What is a Network Administrator

It is not surprising that many kinds of technology careers nowadays are very in-demand in almost every industry. That's why people are spending money studying technical skills to land a job that pays well in exchange for their expertise. But don't take it the wrong way, though. Being a computer expert isn't rainbows and rays of sunshine. You would probably get a lot of "WTF" moments during network failures and system downtimes. And worse.

A network administrator is just one of the many branches of technology. Network administrators manage troubleshooting procedures, requiring them to have both excellencies in technical skills and customer service. Most companies that need network administrators prefer to hire someone with prior experience, as this job has a lot of responsibility. Though they are usually working within regular business hours, a network administrator does not normally slouch until the end of the shift.

You thought scientists are the people who do experiments? You should see what a network administrator's day looks like. They actually search for the best methods to improve the network's condition and prevent system delays. If you're a frustrated scientist who always loved experiments, why don't you try your luck as a network administrator? Who knows, right?

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.

Learn more about what a Network Administrator does

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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Average Salary
$66,701
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
5%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
108,100
Job Openings
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Network Administrator Career Paths

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Average Salary for a Network Administrator

Network Administrators in America make an average salary of $66,701 per year or $32 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $81,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $54,000 per year.
Average Salary
$66,701
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Network Administrator Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Network Administrator. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Network Administrator Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Network Administrator resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

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Network Administrator Demographics

Network Administrator Gender Statistics

male

83.5 %

female

12.4 %

unknown

4.1 %

Network Administrator Ethnicity Statistics

White

64.8 %

Hispanic or Latino

11.6 %

Black or African American

10.6 %

Network Administrator Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

41.9 %

French

10.6 %

Arabic

5.0 %
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Network Administrator Education

Network Administrator Majors

11.5 %

Network Administrator Degrees

Bachelors

55.1 %

Associate

29.8 %

Masters

7.0 %

Top Colleges for Network Administrators

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,832
Enrollment
4,550

2. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

3. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

4. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

5. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

6. Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$12,424
Enrollment
15,201

7. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

8. Georgetown University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,104
Enrollment
7,089

9. Dartmouth College

Hanover, NH • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,453
Enrollment
4,312

10. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451
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Top Skills For a Network Administrator

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 11.9% of network administrators listed network security on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and communication skills are important as well.

12 Network Administrator RESUME EXAMPLES

Best States For a Network Administrator

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a network administrator. The best states for people in this position are California, Washington, Maryland, and Massachusetts. Network administrators make the most in California with an average salary of $76,837. Whereas in Washington and Maryland, they would average $75,821 and $75,418, respectively. While network administrators would only make an average of $73,637 in Massachusetts, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Washington

Total Network Administrator Jobs:
938
Highest 10% Earn:
$102,000
Location Quotient:
1.12
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Maryland

Total Network Administrator Jobs:
1,464
Highest 10% Earn:
$98,000
Location Quotient:
2.02
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Vermont

Total Network Administrator Jobs:
109
Highest 10% Earn:
$92,000
Location Quotient:
1.24
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Network Administrators

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Updated August 18, 2021