Where do you want to work?
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.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Unix Administrator
Top Careers After Unix Administrator
Hispanic or Latino7.4%
Black or African American1.7%
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University of Phoenix17.2%
University of Maryland - University College7.8%
Community College of the Air Force6.9%
Illinois Institute of Technology5.2%
University of Cincinnati5.2%
San Francisco State University4.3%
University of Texas at Arlington4.3%
University of Texas at Austin4.3%
American InterContinental University4.3%
George Mason University4.3%
Western Governors University4.3%
University of Colorado at Boulder4.3%
Wayne State University3.4%
Pace University - New York3.4%
Boise State University3.4%
Rochester Institute of Technology3.4%
Texas A&M University3.4%
New Jersey Institute of Technology3.4%
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Backup Administrator/Unix Administrator||Core Services Corporation||Somerset, NJ||May 27, 2016||$142,000|
|Unix Advisory Administrator||Nvidia Corporation||Santa Clara, CA||Jun 23, 2016||$120,000|
|Unix Administrator||The Gymboree Corporation||San Francisco, CA||Jan 10, 2016||$118,000|
|Unix Advisory Administrator||Nvidia Corporation||Santa Clara, CA||Nov 21, 2016||$117,645 -
|Unix Administrator||Populus Group LLC||Detroit, MI||Oct 18, 2016||$108,524|
|Unix Administrator||NCH Corporation||Irving, TX||Mar 15, 2016||$107,000|
|Unix Administrator-Red Hat||United Guaranty Corporation||Winston-Salem, NC||Jun 27, 2016||$100,000|
|Lead Unix Administrator||AKT LLC||Lewisville, TX||Mar 23, 2016||$98,000|
|Lead Unix Administrator||AKT LLC||McKinney, TX||Aug 03, 2016||$98,000|
|Unix Administrator||Envision LLC||Saint Louis, MO||Jul 03, 2016||$94,474|
|Unix Administrator II||Snap-On Business Solutions||Richfield, OH||Nov 15, 2015||$93,984|
|Unix Administrator||Quantum Vision, LLC||Washington, DC||Aug 31, 2016||$92,310|
|Unix Administrator II||Snap-On Business Solutions||Richfield, OH||Aug 06, 2015||$89,315|
|Unix Administrator||Sierra-Cedar, Inc.||Alpharetta, GA||Feb 21, 2015||$88,000|
|Unix Administrator||Shivam Infotech, Inc.||Irving, TX||May 25, 2016||$74,880|
|Unix Administrator||JNIT Technologies||Berlin, NJ||May 22, 2015||$74,235|
|Unix Administrator||Global Bridge Infotech, Inc.||Irving, TX||Jun 13, 2016||$72,400 -
|Unix Administrator||Server Management Services LLC||Irving, TX||Nov 04, 2016||$72,400 -
|Unix Administrator||CNET Global Solutions, Inc.||Augusta, ME||Jul 29, 2016||$72,000|
|Unix Administrator||Trinity Consulting, Inc.||San Jose, CA||Sep 27, 2016||$71,450 -
|Unix Administrator||Monsanto Company||Saint Louis, MO||Aug 13, 2015||$70,200|
|Unix Administrator||Trinity Consulting Inc.||Detroit, MI||Jun 30, 2015||$70,000|
|Unix Administrator||Global Business Consulting Services, Inc.||Warren, NJ||Sep 16, 2016||$65,500|
|Unix Administrator||Webilent Technology Inc.||Phoenix, AZ||Sep 30, 2016||$65,500|
|Unix-Hp Administrator||Sunrise Systems, Inc.||Metuchen, NJ||Sep 14, 2015||$65,500|
|Unix/Solaris Administrator||Reliant Vision Group, Inc.||Iselin, NJ||Aug 31, 2016||$65,333|
|Linux/Unix Administrator||Veritis Group, Inc.||Irving, TX||Jan 09, 2016||$65,100|
|Linux/Unix Administrator||Veritis Group, Inc.||Irving, TX||Jun 09, 2016||$65,100|
|Unix Administrator||Ezenius, Inc.||Twinsburg, OH||Dec 09, 2016||$65,000|
|Unix Administrator||Veritis Group, Inc.||Irving, TX||Jun 26, 2016||$65,000|
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