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Become A Senior System Administrator

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Working As A Senior System 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

  • $89,917

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior System 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 Senior System 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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Senior System Administrator jobs

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Senior System Administrator Career Paths

Senior System Administrator
Information Technology Manager Director Of Information
Chief Information Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Project Leader Support Lead Technical Support Manager
Data Center Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Project Manager Senior Manager Director Of Information
Director Information Technology Infrastructure
13 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Manager Senior Manager
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Information Security Analyst Information Security Officer Director Of Information
Director Of Information Technology Security
12 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Project Manager Director Of Information
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Lead Systems Engineer Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Director Of Infrastructure Operations
13 Yearsyrs
Engineer Senior Network Engineer Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Director Of Information Program Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Business Analyst Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Infrastructure Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Consultant Senior Consultant
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Senior Consultant Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Systems Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Infrastructure Engineer Senior Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager
Infrastructure Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Director Technical Director Director Of Information
Senior Director Of Information & Technology
13 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Director Program Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Systems Architect Information Technology Manager Infrastructure Manager
Senior Manager Infrastructure
13 Yearsyrs
Project Manager General Manager Database Administrator
Senior Software Engineer
6 Yearsyrs
Engineer Systems Engineer
Senior Systems Engineer
8 Yearsyrs
Director Of Information Information Technology Director
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Network Manager 3.9 years
AIX Administrator 3.4 years
LAN Administrator 3.3 years
Administrator 3.2 years
Systems Engineer 3.2 years
MIS Administrator 3.2 years
LAN Engineer 3.2 years
Lead Administrator 3.1 years
Unix Administrator 2.9 years
Server Engineer 2.5 years
Network Consultant 2.4 years
Citrix Engineer 2.1 years
Exchange Engineer 1.9 years
Windows Engineer 1.8 years
Linux Engineer 1.6 years
Top Employers Before
Consultant 3.4%
Top Employers After
Consultant 4.7%

Senior System Administrator Demographics

Gender

Male

86.7%

Female

10.9%

Unknown

2.4%
Ethnicity

White

74.7%

Asian

12.0%

Hispanic or Latino

9.5%

Unknown

2.9%

Black or African American

0.8%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

34.3%

German

7.9%

French

6.4%

Carrier

6.4%

Portuguese

5.0%

Chinese

5.0%

Cheyenne

5.0%

Russian

4.3%

Japanese

4.3%

Arabic

4.3%

Hindi

2.9%

Korean

2.1%

Italian

2.1%

Urdu

2.1%

Dutch

1.4%

Mandarin

1.4%

Sanskrit

1.4%

Navajo

1.4%

Armenian

1.4%

Sami

0.7%
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Senior System Administrator Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

22.7%

University of Maryland - University College

10.4%

Strayer University

10.2%

Western Governors University

6.5%

Colorado Technical University

5.3%

American InterContinental University

4.0%

George Mason University

3.7%

Community College of the Air Force

3.6%

Capella University

3.4%

University of Maryland - College Park

3.1%

University of Houston

3.1%

Kaplan University

3.1%

Webster University

2.9%

Northeastern University

2.9%

San Jose State University

2.8%

American University

2.8%

University of Massachusetts - Lowell

2.5%

More Tech Institute

2.5%

Purdue University

2.4%

Pennsylvania State University

2.3%
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Majors

Computer Science

20.9%

Business

13.9%

Information Technology

12.8%

Computer Information Systems

12.7%

Electrical Engineering

6.6%

Computer Networking

4.3%

Information Systems

4.3%

Management Information Systems

3.8%

Computer Engineering

2.8%

Management

2.4%

Computer Systems Security

2.3%

Project Management

2.0%

Electrical Engineering Technology

1.8%

Communication

1.5%

Computer Technical Support

1.5%

Education

1.5%

Criminal Justice

1.5%

Computer Programming

1.3%

Engineering

1.2%

Accounting

1.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

45.3%

Other

19.9%

Masters

17.2%

Associate

11.9%

Certificate

3.4%

Diploma

1.4%

Doctorate

0.9%

License

0.0%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Senior System Administrator Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Systems Administrator Tower Research Capital LLC Chicago, IL Sep 13, 2015 $170,000
Senior System Administrator Information Management Consultants, Inc. Rockville, MD Dec 07, 2015 $151,425
Senior Systems Administrator Hotwire, Inc. San Francisco, CA Oct 01, 2016 $151,269 -
$158,700
Senior Systems Administrator Hotwire, Inc. San Francisco, CA Jan 10, 2016 $151,269 -
$158,700
IT Leader-Senior System Administrator General Electric Company San Ramon, CA Mar 23, 2015 $150,000
Senior System Administrator EBAY Inc. San Jose, CA Jul 17, 2016 $145,142
Senior Systems Administrator-Labs Fireeye, Inc. Reston, VA Aug 10, 2015 $145,000
Systems Administrator, Senior Yahoo! Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Feb 29, 2016 $145,000 -
$165,000
Senior Systems Administrator-Labs Fireeye, Inc. Reston, VA Oct 08, 2015 $145,000
SR. Systems Administrator Fareportal, Inc. New York, NY Jan 09, 2016 $138,200
Senior System Administrator Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) Sunnyvale, CA Jun 12, 2015 $135,283 -
$139,500
Senior Staff Systems Administrator Xilinx, Inc. San Jose, CA May 11, 2015 $135,000
Senior Systems Administrator Westcon Group Tarrytown, NY Oct 20, 2016 $134,909
SR Systems Administrator/Engineer Arista Networks, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Jun 06, 2016 $130,000
Senior Systems Database Administrator Navy Mutual Aid Association Arlington, VA Apr 07, 2016 $104,800 -
$124,231
System Administrator Senior Professional CSC Covansys Corporation Southfield, MI Dec 09, 2016 $104,187
System Administrator Senior Professional CSC Covansys Corporation Southfield, MI Apr 11, 2016 $104,187
System Administrator Senior Professional CSC Covansys Corporation Southfield, MI Apr 14, 2016 $104,187
System Administrator Senior Professional CSC Covansys Corporation Southfield, MI Aug 28, 2015 $104,000
SR. Systems Administrator Illumina, Inc. San Diego, CA Sep 26, 2015 $103,813 -
$151,200
Senior Systems Administrator AOL, Inc. Dulles Town Center, VA Jan 05, 2016 $103,750
Senior Hyperion System Administrator CVS Pharmacy, Inc. Cumberland, RI Apr 21, 2016 $102,597
SR. Systems Administrator Scepter Technologies Inc. Owings Mills, MD Sep 06, 2016 $90,584
SR. Systems Administrator Scepter Technologies Inc. Owings Mills, MD Oct 03, 2016 $90,584
SR. Systems Administrator Scepter Technologies Inc. Owings Mills, MD Nov 18, 2015 $90,584
Senior System Administrator Grifols Shared Services North America, Inc. Clayton, NC Mar 22, 2016 $90,542 -
$98,000
Middleware System Administrator Senior TSYS Columbus, GA May 19, 2016 $90,500 -
$100,500
Middleware System Administrator Senior TSYS Columbus, GA Aug 19, 2016 $90,500 -
$100,500
Senior-Systems Administrator at&T Services, Inc. Atlanta, GA Mar 14, 2016 $90,200
Senior-Systems Administrator at&T Services, Inc. Atlanta, GA Mar 15, 2016 $90,200

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Top Skills for A Senior System Administrator

WindowsServerHardwareSymantecBackupExecActiveDirectoryNetworkInfrastructureStorageSQLServerLinuxRemoteWebServersDNSSANDisasterRecoveryDatabaseVmwareESXDomainControllersDesktopSetupUnixSystemAdministration

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Top Senior System Administrator Skills

  1. Windows Server
  2. Hardware
  3. Symantec Backup Exec
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Deployed and configure new Windows Server 2003/2008 physical and virtual servers.
  • Perform installation, configuration, and maintenance of all manners of server hardware and associated equipment.
  • Researched and implemented server backup by using Symantec backup EXEC 10d.
  • Perform Active Directory administration as needed.
  • Created design and engineering specifications for new computer and network infrastructures.

Top Senior System Administrator Employers