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Become A Data Network Technician

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Working As A Data Network Technician

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $89,758

    Average Salary

What Does A Data Network Technician Do

Computer networks are critical parts of almost every organization. Network and computer systems administrators are responsible for the day-to-day operation of these networks. They organize, install, and support an organization’s computer systems, including local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), network segments, intranets, and other data communication systems.

Duties

Network and computer systems administrators typically do the following:

  • Determine an organization’s network and computer system needs before setting one up
  • Install all network hardware and software and make needed upgrades and repairs
  • Maintain network and computer system security and ensure that all systems are operating correctly
  • Collect data in order to evaluate and optimize network or system performance
  • Add users to a network and assign and update security permissions on the network
  • Train users in the proper use of hardware and software
  • Interpret and solve problems when a user or an automated monitoring system alerts them that one exists

Administrators manage an organization’s servers and desktop and mobile equipment. They ensure that email and data storage networks work properly. They also make sure that employees’ workstations are working efficiently and stay connected to the central computer network. Some administrators manage telecommunication networks.

In some cases, administrators help network architects design and analyze network models. They also participate in decisions about buying future hardware or software to upgrade their organization’s network. Some administrators provide technical support to computer users, and they also may supervise computer support specialists who help solve users’ problems.

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How To Become A Data Network Technician

Most employers require network and computer systems administrators to have a bachelor’s degree in a field related to computer or information science. Others may require only a postsecondary certificate.

Education

Although some employers require only a postsecondary certificate, most require a bachelor’s degree in a field related to computer or information science. There are degree programs that focus on computer network and system administration. However, because administrators work with computer hardware and equipment, a degree in computer engineering or electrical engineering usually is acceptable as well. Programs in these fields usually include classes in computer programming, networking, or systems design.

Because network technology is continually changing, administrators need to keep up with the latest developments. Many continue to take courses throughout their careers and attend information technology (IT) conferences to keep up with the latest technology. Some businesses require that an administrator get a master’s degree.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Certification programs are generally offered directly from vendors or from vendor-neutral certification providers. Certification validates knowledge and best practices required from network and computer systems administrators. Companies may require their network and computer systems administrators to be certified in the product they use. Microsoft and Cisco offer some of the most common certifications.

Other Experience

To gain practical experience, many network administrators participate in internship programs while in school.

Advancement

Network administrators can advance to become computer network architects. They can also advance to managerial jobs in information technology (IT) departments, such as computer and information systems managers.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Administrators need analytical skills to evaluate network and system performance and determine how changes in the environment will affect them.

Communication skills. Administrators must be able to describe problems and their solutions to non-IT workers.

Computer skills. Administrators oversee the connections of many different types of computer equipment and must ensure that they all work together properly.

Multitasking skills. Administrators may have to work on many problems and tasks at the same time.

Problem-solving skills. Administrators must be able to quickly resolve any problems that arise with computer networks.

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Average Length of Employment
Network Technician 3.1 years
Network Associate 2.7 years
Data Technician 2.7 years
Network Assistant 1.8 years
Network Internship 0.6 years
Top Careers Before Data Network Technician
Technician 5.1%
Cashier 5.1%
Mail Clerk 3.8%
Top Careers After Data Network Technician
Technician 5.1%
Consultant 4.2%

Do you work as a Data Network Technician?

Data Network Technician Demographics

Gender

Male

89.6%

Female

7.5%

Unknown

2.9%
Ethnicity

White

60.6%

Hispanic or Latino

18.1%

Black or African American

11.1%

Asian

7.6%

Unknown

2.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

77.8%

Carrier

22.2%

Data Network Technician Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

17.1%

Community College of the Air Force

11.4%

American University

5.7%

Humboldt State University

5.7%

Cape Fear Community College

5.7%

Andover College

5.7%

Grace University

5.7%

Saint John Fisher College

5.7%

Weber State University

5.7%

Louisiana State University and A&M College

2.9%

ITT Technical Institute-Strongsville

2.9%

Washington State University

2.9%

ITT Technical Institute-Norwood (Ohio)

2.9%

ECPI University

2.9%

Northwood University

2.9%

Clark College

2.9%

Gadsden State Community College

2.9%

Tarrant County College District

2.9%

Mesa Community College - Boswell

2.9%

Black Hawk College - Quad-Cities Campus

2.9%
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Majors

Computer Science

15.8%

Information Technology

13.7%

Business

10.5%

Computer Information Systems

7.4%

Computer Networking

7.4%

Electrical Engineering

7.4%

Computer Technical Support

4.2%

Criminal Justice

4.2%

Computer Engineering

4.2%

Electrical Engineering Technology

3.2%

Communication

3.2%

Management

2.1%

Information Sciences

2.1%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.1%

Management Information Systems

2.1%

Political Science

2.1%

Computer Systems Security

2.1%

Health Care Administration

2.1%

Electrical And Power Transmission Installers

2.1%

English

2.1%
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Degrees

Other

29.3%

Bachelors

27.6%

Associate

25.0%

Masters

9.5%

Certificate

6.9%

Diploma

1.7%
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Top Skills for A Data Network Technician

  1. Network Services
  2. Internet
  3. Windows XP
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Install, configure, and maintain network services, both hardware, and software.
  • Crossed trained with wireless internet department and assisted with equipment pulls as needed and delegated by default management.
  • Contacted vendors and equipment manufactures to create trouble tickets for repair of sites, equipment, VLAN's and cabling.
  • Install, configure and maintain the LAN/WAN and cable infrastructure for Nations Bank, Bank One, TU Electric and Texas Instruments
  • Consulted with users to develop cost effective strategies to expand network access by planning cabling and wireless access point locations.

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Top Data Network Technician Employers

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