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Become A Network Administrator

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Working As A Network Administrator

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

  • Repetitive

  • $69,550

    Average Salary

What Does A Network Administrator 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 Network Administrator

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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Network Administrator Jobs

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Network Administrator Career Paths

Network Administrator
Systems Analyst Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager
Data Center Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Director
Director Information Technology Infrastructure
13 Yearsyrs
Web Developer Systems Analyst Information Systems Manager
Director Of Information Services
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Systems Engineer Senior System Administrator Information Technology Manager
Director Of Information Technology Security
12 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Project Manager Information Technology Director
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Senior Systems Engineer Senior Consultant Information Technology Director
Director Of Infrastructure Operations
13 Yearsyrs
Specialist Service Technician Technical Services Manager
Director Of Technology And Services
11 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Network Engineer Network Manager
Director, Network Operations
10 Yearsyrs
Software Engineer Systems Analyst
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Infrastructure Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Systems Engineer Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Support Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Lead Technician Technical Support Specialist Network Technician
Information Technology Systems Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Systems Analyst Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Manager
Infrastructure Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Infrastructure Project Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Network Engineer Systems Engineer
Manager, Systems Engineering
9 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Manager Information Technology Director
Senior Director Of Information & Technology
13 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Engineer Senior Network Engineer Infrastructure Manager
Senior Manager Infrastructure
12 Yearsyrs
Engineer Senior Software Engineer Technical Manager
Technical Operations Manager
8 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Network Administrator?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
LAN Administrator 3.3 years
Network Technician 3.1 years
Network Consultant 2.3 years
Network Internship 0.6 years
Top Employers Before
Technician 3.1%
Consultant 2.9%
Top Employers After
Consultant 3.8%

Do you work as a Network Administrator?

Network Administrator Demographics

Gender

Male

86.0%

Female

11.7%

Unknown

2.3%
Ethnicity

White

58.2%

Hispanic or Latino

15.3%

Black or African American

11.3%

Asian

10.1%

Unknown

5.2%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

40.5%

French

10.6%

Arabic

5.4%

Carrier

4.9%

Chinese

4.9%

Mandarin

4.1%

German

4.1%

Portuguese

3.8%

Cheyenne

3.6%

Russian

3.3%

Japanese

3.0%

Italian

2.5%

Korean

1.9%

Hindi

1.6%

Vietnamese

1.4%

Urdu

1.3%

Cantonese

1.1%

Swedish

0.6%

Dutch

0.6%

Norwegian

0.6%
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Network Administrator Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

24.9%

Strayer University

8.6%

Western Governors University

7.4%

University of Maryland - University College

6.8%

Community College of the Air Force

6.1%

American InterContinental University

4.3%

Colorado Technical University

3.9%

George Mason University

3.8%

Pennsylvania State University

3.7%

Kaplan University

3.6%

University of Houston

3.3%

Capella University

3.2%

Northern Virginia Community College

3.0%

DePaul University

2.7%

The Academy

2.7%

Northeastern University

2.6%

More Tech Institute

2.5%

American University

2.4%

New Jersey Institute of Technology

2.4%

University of Central Florida

2.2%
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Majors

Computer Science

17.5%

Computer Information Systems

13.6%

Information Technology

13.4%

Business

12.5%

Computer Networking

8.6%

Electrical Engineering

6.1%

Information Systems

4.0%

Management Information Systems

3.5%

Computer Engineering

3.0%

Computer Systems Security

2.4%

Management

2.2%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.1%

Criminal Justice

1.7%

Computer Technical Support

1.6%

Communication

1.5%

Project Management

1.4%

Education

1.4%

Computer Programming

1.2%

Accounting

1.2%

Finance

1.1%
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Degrees

Bachelors

41.1%

Other

21.5%

Associate

17.3%

Masters

14.0%

Certificate

3.6%

Diploma

1.8%

Doctorate

0.7%

License

0.1%
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Internship
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Real Network Administrator Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Network Administrator Visa Technology & Operations LLC Ashburn, VA Aug 28, 2018 $85,280 -
$97,309
Network Administrator-II HCL America, Inc. Ashburn, VA Jun 07, 2018 $85,280
Network Administrator-II HCL America, Inc. Ashburn, VA Jan 08, 2017 $83,221
Network Administrator Disys Solutions, Inc. Ashburn, VA Apr 27, 2016 $82,000
Network Administrator Arthur Grand Technologies Inc. Ashburn, VA Jan 09, 2016 $80,000
Network Administrator Arthur Grand Technologies Inc. Ashburn, VA Sep 01, 2015 $80,000
Network Administration Tachys Inc. Ashburn, VA Jan 03, 2018 $75,000
Network Administrator Accentuate Technologies, Inc. Ashburn, VA Jan 12, 2015 $73,258
Network Administrator Balagan Inc. Ashburn, VA Sep 15, 2014 $58,500 -
$68,500
Network Administrator Secure Networks, Inc. Ashburn, VA Jan 21, 2010 $51,000
Network Administrator Secure Networks Inc. Ashburn, VA Jan 19, 2010 $51,000
Network Administrator Secure Networks Inc. Ashburn, VA Sep 15, 2011 $50,000
Network Administrator Secure Networks Inc. Ashburn, VA Sep 13, 2011 $48,000

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Top Skills for A Network Administrator

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  1. Windows XP
  2. Network Hardware
  3. Backup
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Support diversified desktop/laptop environment using Windows XP O.S.
  • Maintain, monitor and document all network hardware/software inventory using EMCO Network Inventory Software.
  • Involved in backup and restoring data procedures while maintaining documentation.
  • Experience establishing and configuring Enterprise Active Directory including firewall settings, group policies, and user/device accounts.
  • Maintained and configured SonicWall and Cisco-Meraki network appliances at 20+ sites for intrusion detection/protection, content filtering and remote access.

How Would You Rate Working As a Network Administrator?

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Top Network Administrator Employers

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Jobs From Top Network Administrator Employers

Network Administrator Videos

How to Become a Network Engineer

The Salary and Career Potential of a Cisco Certified Network Associate CCNA)

Q&A - Salaries for Computer Jobs [How much $$$ can you make?]

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