Comparative Analysis of Microsoft Certifications and Cisco Certifications

By Avni Singh 26-May-2022
Comparative Analysis of Microsoft Certifications and Cisco Certifications
The two major certification giants for IT professionals are Microsoft and Cisco. They offer a wide range of certifications for individuals who wish to attain proficiency in Information Technology and Networking.
The huge list of top it certifications 2021 offered from both the brands often make the candidates perplexed in choosing the most suitable certification. With these varied options, they find themselves lost in figuring out the credential most appropriate for them as per their skills and requirement. Therefore, it becomes imperative to analyze and go through a detailed comparative study to understand which is the most worthy of all.

Comparative Analysis

  • The Microsoft certifications have been designed for individuals interested in building a career in the IT sector while Cisco offers a range of certifications in networking.
  • Microsoft is the leading software company while Cisco manufactures networking devices and IT infrastructure equipment such as routers and switches.
  • With Microsoft certifications, a candidate gains experience in working with Microsoft servers and software. Cisco certifications showcase your experience in IT networking.
The Microsoft exams are less difficult in comparison to the Cisco certification exams . The number of certifications offered by Microsoft are more than the number of certifications offered by Cisco.

The Cons Behind the Two Programs


  • Opting for  Microsoft certifications  ensures the understanding and knowledge of only the Microsoft software and computer languages associated with it.
  • Though the examinations may be easier than the ones created by Cisco, they are still often viewed as tough by the candidates.
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  • The certification programs are costlier.
  • The preparation for these exams require a lot of sincerity, time and effort as the exams are relatively tougher.
  • The certifications are tough to avail.
  • The popularity of these certifications are lesser than Microsoft certifications.
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Some more Specific Comparisons

Working technique
The Microsoft needs to be updated on a weekly basis whereas the router in Cisco networks needs to be configured within six months.
Microsoft tracks the associated users and computers while Cisco keeps a track of IP numbers.
If we look at the popularity of the two certification programs, we conclude that Microsoft certifications are more popular than Cisco certifications because of the increased familiarity of these certifications among the masses.
IT companies prefer Microsoft Certified Professionals over Cisco Certified Professionals. For instance, a particular IT company may prefer hiring a Certified Microsoft Engineer rather than a Cisco Networking professional.

Comparison of salaries

Considering the salaries, Cisco certified professionals are hired at a higher salary than their Microsoft certified peers.


Looking at all the aspects of both the certifications, it is still difficult to interpret which of the two one should opt for. Both the programs are designed well to give your career a boost. The major difference that one can focus on is the kind of systems that they both work on. While Microsoft focuses on server maintenance, Cisco looks after the networking systems. Thus, the onus is left on the candidate to decide the credential based on the preference, skills and interest.

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Avni Singh

Avni Singh has a PhD in Machine Learning and is an Artificial Intelligence developer, researcher, practitioner, and educator as well as an Open Source Software developer, with over 7 years in the industry.