In 2019, Cisco announced the new DevNet Associate certifications, along with some other changes to the certification structure. This clearly indicated the importance of customization and automation within the realm of Cisco products, as well as within the IT industry as a whole.

Discover how CDW services and solutions can help meet your automation and network management needs.

What separates companies in today’s marketplace is the ability to provide services that require multiple integrations, custom applications and automation. These can all be implemented with programmability, and achieving a DevNet certification is a great way to begin the journey.

What is Programmability?

Programmability is the term used to describe the process of creating logic within hardware and software for the purpose of altering business rules and performing tasks. It can also pertain to building user interfaces that may communicate with multiple components in order to create a “single pane of glass.” One may hear different definitions for this term, but in a nutshell, it refers to the process of making repetitive or difficult tasks easier and more efficient to perform using technology such as programming languages, PowerShell scripts or APIs to name a few examples.

For more information on this topic, and to get a feel for what will be covered on the DevNet Associate exam, check out these great blogs by Khaled Abuelenain:

Why Get DevNet Certified?

Certifications in general are important for the obvious reasons, such as keeping up with current technology and improving technical skills, but the DevNet Associate certification has the potential to be a career changer. It’s a well-rounded program that touches just about every Cisco API, covers networking fundamentals, discusses the importance of security, introduces Python as a programming language and spotlights the need to automate IT infrastructure that used to be done via tedious command line interfaces. And this is just a small sampling of topics covered on this exam; the full list is quite impressive. By covering the topics in the DevNet Associate certification, you may discover that writing a script to perform repeatable, mundane tasks is both rewarding and time saving.

DevNet 500/Class of 2020

As a part of the new DevNet certifications, Cisco gave special recognition to the first 500 applicants that passed the exam, which included 6 people from CDW. Cisco also gave special recognition to the DevNet Class of 2020 — those who passed the exam prior to February of 2021 (after the deadline was extended into 2021) — which included about 8,000 people. These recognitions show just how important Cisco deems the DevNet certifications, as I don’t believe this type of recognition has ever been done in the past.

DevNet Certification Resources

There are many resources available online, such as Cisco DevNet Learning Labs and study materials available on the exam overview page. Other resources that could prove invaluable include the videos on LinkedIn Learning and study guides and practice tests on the O’Reilly book website (search either site for “DevNet Associate”). One of the best ways to achieve a DevNet Associate certification is to start a book club within your organization and study together. CDW has done this and it has proven to be very successful. In fact, CDW is currently collaborating with Cisco, delivering a 10-week book club for our customers to introduce the topics on the exam.

Getting Certified

A DevNet Associate certification is a great step in advancing your career. There are many topics to study in order to pass this exam, as it touches on a multitude of technology areas including networking, security, API development and Cisco core software. You can acquire new skills and learn new ways of performing a job more efficiently. Once you get certified and learn how programmability can effectively change the way you perform a job, you can start to think about ways to innovate. You can also enter fun challenges, such as the Cisco Innovation Challenge, to show off your new programmability skills, or simply wow your co-workers with innovative new ways of performing your job. The possibilities are endless.

To learn more about how CDW can assist with Programmability in your environment, contact your account manager.