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Become A Data Communications Specialist

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Working As A Data Communications Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $85,188

    Average Salary

What Does A Data Communications Specialist Do

Computer network architects design and build data communication networks, including local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), and intranets. These networks range from small connections between two offices to next-generation networking capabilities such as a cloud infrastructure that serves multiple customers. Network architects must have extensive knowledge of an organization’s business plan to design a network that can help the organization achieve its goals.

Duties

Computer network architects typically do the following:

  • Create plans and layouts for data communication networks
  • Present plans to management and explain why they are in the organization’s best interest to pursue them
  • Consider information security when designing networks
  • Upgrade hardware, such as routers or adaptors, and software, such as network drivers, as needed to support computer networks
  • Research new networking technologies to determine what would best support their organization in the future

Computer network architects, or network engineers, often work with their organization’s chief technology officer (CTO) to predict where the organization will most need new networks. They spend most of their time planning these new networks. Some computer network architects work with engineers such as computer hardware engineers who help build the network a network architect has designed. Network architects are often experienced staff and have 5 to 10 years of experience working in network administration or with other information technology (IT) systems.

Computer network architects also create models to predict future network needs by analyzing current data traffic and estimating how growth will affect the network. They also keep up to date on new hardware and software technology and test how it can improve network performance. In addition, computer network architects have to keep security in mind and when network vulnerabilities arise, implement security patches or other countermeasures.

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How To Become A Data Communications Specialist

Most computer network architects have a bachelor’s degree in a computer-related field and experience in a related occupation, such as network and computer systems administrators.

Education

Computer network architects usually need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information systems, engineering, or a related field. Degree programs in a computer-related field give network architects hands-on laboratory work in classes such as network security or database design. These programs prepare network architects to be able to work with the wide array of technologies used in networks.

Employers of network architects sometimes prefer applicants to have a Master's of Business Administration (MBA) in information systems. MBA programs generally require 2 years of study beyond the undergraduate level and include both business and computer-related courses.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Network architects generally need to have at least 5 to 10 years of experience working with information technology (IT) systems. They often have experience as a network and computer system administrator but also may come from other computer-related occupations such as database administrator or computer systems analyst.

Certification

Certification programs are generally offered by product vendors or software firms. Vendor-specific certification verifies a set of skills to ensure network architects are able to work in specific networking environments. Companies may require their network architects to be certified in the products they use.

Advancement

Some network architects advance to become computer and information systems managers.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Computer network architects have to examine data networks and decide how to best connect the networks based on the needs and resources of the organization.

Detail oriented. Computer network architects create comprehensive plans of the networks they are creating with precise information describing how the network parts will work together.

Interpersonal skills. These workers must be able to work with different types of employees to successfully design and implement computer and information networks.

Leadership skills. Many computer network architects direct teams of engineers who build the networks they have designed, such as computer hardware engineers.

Organizational skills. Computer network architects who work for large firms must coordinate many different types of communication networks and make sure they work well together.

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Data Communications Specialist Jobs

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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
MIS Specialist 3.2 years
Data Specialist 2.5 years
Specialist 2.5 years
Top Employers Before
Supervisor 5.6%
Manager 5.6%
Owner 3.4%
Teacher 3.4%
Consultant 3.4%
Internship 3.4%
Top Employers After
Consultant 8.1%

Do you work as a Data Communications Specialist?

Data Communications Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

71.7%

Female

24.1%

Unknown

4.2%
Ethnicity

White

61.4%

Hispanic or Latino

14.9%

Black or African American

11.2%

Asian

8.8%

Unknown

3.6%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.0%

Korean

21.4%

Carrier

14.3%

Chickasaw

7.1%

Vietnamese

7.1%
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Data Communications Specialist Education

Schools

Widener University

8.1%

Hudson Valley Community College

8.1%

University of Phoenix

8.1%

More Tech Institute

8.1%

Illinois State University

5.4%

University of South Florida

5.4%

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

5.4%

Sowela Technical Community College

5.4%

Daniel Webster College

5.4%

University of Central Oklahoma

5.4%

City College of San Francisco

5.4%

Florida State University

5.4%

Colorado State University

5.4%

Manhattan Institute of Management

2.7%

University of Nevada - Reno

2.7%

California State University - Chico

2.7%

Daytona State College

2.7%

Ramapo College of New Jersey

2.7%

Center for Employment Training - San Diego

2.7%

University of Alabama

2.7%
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Majors

Computer Science

15.9%

Business

12.1%

Computer Information Systems

7.5%

Computer Networking

7.5%

Electrical Engineering

6.5%

Management

5.6%

Marketing

5.6%

Information Technology

5.6%

Communication

5.6%

Management Information Systems

3.7%

Criminal Justice

3.7%

Accounting

3.7%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.8%

General Studies

2.8%

Public Health

1.9%

Project Management

1.9%

Music

1.9%

Educational Technology

1.9%

Mathematics

1.9%

Graphic Communications

1.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

32.7%

Other

29.8%

Masters

17.0%

Associate

11.7%

Certificate

4.1%

Diploma

2.3%

Doctorate

1.8%

License

0.6%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Data Communications Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Voice and Data Communications Specialist First Fire Systems, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Jan 04, 2016 $70,000
Network Systems and Data Communications Specialists Apple Inc. Elk Grove, CA May 14, 2010 $68,085
Network and Data Communication Specialist Unify Solutions, Inc. San Jose, CA Jan 06, 2011 $68,000
Voice and Data Communications Specialist Nextcom, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Oct 01, 2010 $68,000 -
$75,000
Data Communications Specialist, SR. UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside Pittsburgh, PA Nov 25, 2010 $63,236
Data Communications & Network Specialist KDDI America, Inc. New York, NY Oct 22, 2011 $59,800
Data Communications & Network Specialist KDDI America, Inc. New York, NY Oct 22, 2010 $58,000

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Top Skills for A Data Communications Specialist

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  1. Computer
  2. Data Communications Equipment
  3. LAN
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Supervised technical staff to install computer systems on a wide-area network to support a client/server installation.
  • Designed, coded, and tested software tools for support and configuration of data communications equipment.
  • Participate in development and implementation of projects along with program planning and development.
  • Provide on site implementation and configuration of WAN communication equipment.
  • Created tables, queries, reports and data entry interfaces to ensure efficient and accurate utilization of data.

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Top Data Communications Specialist Employers

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Jobs From Top Data Communications Specialist Employers

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