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Become A Systems Operator

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Working As A Systems Operator

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

  • Repetitive

  • $65,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Systems Operator 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 Systems Operator

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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Systems Operator Jobs

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Systems Operator Career Paths

Systems Operator
Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Network Engineer Systems Engineer
Manager, Systems Engineering
9 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Computer Technician Systems Analyst
Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Technician Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Consultant Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Infrastructure Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Network Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Technical Services Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Senior Network Engineer Information Technology Director
Director, Technical Operations
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Network Administrator Information Systems Manager
Information Systems Director
8 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Senior Systems Engineer Information Technology Director
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Field Service Technician Technical Services Manager
Director Of Technology And Services
11 Yearsyrs
Technician Systems Engineer Systems Manager
Senior Manager-Systems
11 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Computer Technician Information Technology Consultant
Information Technology Systems Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Technician Senior Technologist
Principal Technologist
10 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Systems Engineer Senior System Administrator
Infrastructure Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Service Desk Analyst Service Desk Supervisor
Service Desk Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Operator Maintenance Technician Journeyman
Systems Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Information Technology Analyst
Information Technology Supervisor, Information Technology
6 Yearsyrs
Help Desk Analyst Senior Computer Operator Computer Operations Manager
Data Center Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Operator Computer Technician Service Desk Analyst
Incident Manager
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Systems Operator?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Systems Specialist 4.2 years
Systems Operator 4.0 years
Systems Integrator 3.2 years
Network Operator 3.1 years
Help Desk Operator 3.0 years
Systems Support 2.7 years
NOC Operator 2.1 years
Top Careers Before Systems Operator
Cashier 10.5%
Operator 5.2%
Internship 4.8%
Technician 4.4%
Supervisor 3.7%
Manager 3.2%
Server 2.8%
Top Careers After Systems Operator
Technician 5.6%
Manager 4.6%
Cashier 4.5%
Operator 4.2%
Supervisor 3.9%
Consultant 3.6%

Do you work as a Systems Operator?

Systems Operator Demographics

Gender

Male

70.3%

Female

20.9%

Unknown

8.8%
Ethnicity

White

60.3%

Hispanic or Latino

16.3%

Black or African American

12.1%

Asian

7.7%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

52.1%

German

5.3%

French

4.8%

Chinese

4.8%

Mandarin

4.3%

Carrier

4.3%

Arabic

4.3%

Korean

2.7%

Russian

2.7%

Portuguese

2.7%

Japanese

2.7%

Cantonese

2.1%

Turkish

1.6%

Vietnamese

1.6%

Italian

1.6%

Balti

0.5%

Hawaiian

0.5%

Ukrainian

0.5%

Thai

0.5%

Navajo

0.5%
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Systems Operator Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

18.0%

Community College of the Air Force

14.9%

Central Texas College

8.3%

University of Maryland - University College

6.9%

American University

6.2%

Colorado Technical University

5.2%

Strayer University

4.6%

Liberty University

4.1%

Cochise College

4.0%

Ashford University

3.9%

American InterContinental University

3.3%

Western Governors University

2.8%

Webster University

2.8%

Southern New Hampshire University

2.2%

Grantham University

2.2%

Excelsior College

2.2%

Troy University

2.1%

Capella University

2.1%

Columbia Southern University

2.0%

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

2.0%
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Majors

Business

20.2%

Computer Science

12.0%

Information Technology

9.3%

Computer Information Systems

9.2%

Criminal Justice

7.1%

Electrical Engineering

5.4%

Computer Networking

4.6%

General Studies

4.4%

Accounting

3.7%

Management

3.2%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.9%

Communication

2.6%

Education

2.2%

Psychology

2.1%

Information Systems

2.0%

Mechanical Engineering

2.0%

Graphic Design

1.9%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

1.8%

Computer Engineering

1.7%

Computer Systems Security

1.7%
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Degrees

Bachelors

35.7%

Other

27.3%

Associate

18.0%

Masters

10.5%

Certificate

5.7%

Diploma

2.0%

Doctorate

0.6%

License

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$65,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$39,000
Min 10%
$65,000
Median 50%
$65,000
Median 50%
$65,000
Median 50%
$65,000
Median 50%
$65,000
Median 50%
$65,000
Median 50%
$65,000
Median 50%
$108,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Messer Construction
Highest Paying City
Baltimore, MD
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
4.0 years
How much does a Systems Operator make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Systems Operator in the United States is $65,768 per year or $32 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $39,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $108,000.

Real Systems Operator Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Trading System Operator Worldquant, LLC Old Greenwich, CT Jun 16, 2011 $125,000
Trading System Operator Worldquant, LLC Old Greenwich, CT Sep 01, 2012 $120,000
Trading System Operator Worldquant, LLC Old Greenwich, CT Oct 01, 2010 $120,000
Anti-Money Laundering Systems and Operations Suppo HSBC Bank USA, N.A. New York, NY Apr 18, 2011 $95,000
Decision Support Systems Operation Research Analys Business Intelli Solutions, Inc. Richardson, TX Jun 17, 2011 $82,000
Decision Support Systems Operations Research Analy Business Intelli Solutions Inc. Tampa, FL Feb 16, 2012 $82,000
Decision Support Systems Operation Research Analys Business Intelli Solutions Inc. Richardson, TX Jun 18, 2010 $82,000
Decision Support Systems Operation Research Analys Business Intelli Solutions, Inc. Richardson, TX Jun 18, 2010 $82,000
Data Systems Operator Peoples Choice Stafffing, Inc. Arlington Heights, IL Oct 01, 2010 $75,132
Collateral Operations Systems Analysis/Dev+Interna Credit Agricole America Services, Inc. New York, NY Aug 25, 2013 $70,000
Collateral Operations Systems Analysis/Dev+Interna Credit Agricole America Services, Inc. New York, NY Oct 01, 2010 $65,000
Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Systems and Operations HSBC Bank USA, N.A. New York, NY Sep 23, 2013 $62,000
Systems Operator Tenaska, Inc. Arlington, TX Sep 21, 2010 $60,150
System Operator Tech Mahindra (Americas), Inc. White Plains, NY Dec 15, 2011 $60,000
System Operator Tech Mahindra (Americas), Inc. Saint Louis, MO Dec 15, 2011 $60,000
System Operator Tech Mahindra (Americas), Inc. San Diego, CA Dec 15, 2011 $60,000

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Top Skills for A Systems Operator

  1. Procedures
  2. Computer Hardware
  3. Ancillary Communications Equipment
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Demonstrate familiarity with terminology of work environment, knowledge, and understanding of USCIS basic immigration paperwork and procedures.
  • Answered simple technical or functional questions and performed minor troubleshooting regarding the use and identification of personal computer hardware.
  • Installed, operated and performed unit-level and direct support maintenance on electrical assemblages, systems and ancillary communications equipment.
  • Perform preventative and reactive troubleshooting, repair, and modification of various mechanical, electrical and pneumatic systems.
  • Assisted subordinate operators in the conduct of communication security operations, combat Net Radio interface procedures and associated computer/technical tasks

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Top 10 Best States for Systems Operators

  1. Alaska
  2. Nevada
  3. Washington
  4. Connecticut
  5. California
  6. Colorado
  7. Massachusetts
  8. Rhode Island
  9. New York
  10. Wyoming
  • (29 jobs)
  • (76 jobs)
  • (263 jobs)
  • (93 jobs)
  • (893 jobs)
  • (256 jobs)
  • (263 jobs)
  • (39 jobs)
  • (470 jobs)
  • (21 jobs)

Top Systems Operator Employers

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Jobs From Top Systems Operator Employers

Systems Operator Videos

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