Network Administrator


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Network Administrator

Network Administrators manage networks & communications systems.

network administrator training onlineNetwork administrators install, support and manage the networks and computer systems that keep information flowing. They implement and maintain network hardware and software, troubleshoot network problems, and ensure network security, availability & performance standards.
In challenging economic times, organizations retain and hire new network administrators to optimize existing systems to reduce costs and increase productivity. In a strong economy, companies implement new networking and communications technologies to spur a competitive advantage, leading to increased demand for trained and certified network administrators to install, secure and optimize the new systems. This consistent demand for network administrators, independent of economic conditions, has led some leading employment experts to dub network administrator a "recession proof career."
The U.S. Dept. of Labor forecasts network administrator employment to explode by 28% from 2010 to 2020, much faster than the average for all occupations. With demand at an all-time high, it's an ideal time to begin or advance your network administration career. Universities, colleges and private computer schools offer a range of network administrator training and degree programs. Compare top-reviewed network administrator courses & degrees in the U.S., Canada and online.

Network Administrator Skills & Responsibilities

Typical daily activities and marketable skill sets for network administrators include the following. Network administrators:
  • Configure and maintain the organization's internal computer network.
  • Manage network security tools, e.g., firewall, anti-virus and intrusion detection systems.
  • Identify, troubleshoot, solve and document network connectivity and performance issues.
  • Install and support hard-line telephones and other networked telecommunication devices.
  • Monitor network performance and optimize the network for optimal speed and availability.
  • Install, configure and maintain network hardware, for example, Cisco routers and switches.
  • Deploy, configure and upgrade network software, such as, enterprise antivirus or diagnostics programs.
  • Implement and maintain emergency backup and restore systems for mission-critical network servers.
  • Network administrators regulate user access to sensitive files to protect against internal security breaches.
  • In smaller companies, network administrators are often responsible for end-user desktop support, and the
    maintenance of servers and other networked devices.

Network Administrator Salary

  • Network Administrator average annual salary (U.S.): $69,000
Network Administrator Salary $69,000

Average starting salaries for network administrators and related positions:
  • Network Administrator: $69,000
  • Network Manager: $73,000
  • Cisco Network Administrator: $80,000
  • Network Designer: $81,000
  • Network Engineer: $86,000
  • Cisco Network Engineer: $88,000
  • Network Security Administrator: $89,000
  • Network Maintenance Specialist: $90,000
  • Network Architect: $105,000
  • Cisco Network Architect: $109,000
  • Cisco CCIE Network Engineer: $114,000
The hourly wage for network administrators ranges from $21 to $60 per hour, depending on the individual's geographic location, known technologies, certifications and practical field experience.

Network Administrator Education Requirements

Network administrators are often required to have an undergrad or graduate degree in computer science, network administration, systems engineering, or a related field of study. Upon completion of a formal education program, network administrators can further distinguish themselves and increase employment and advancement opportunities by earning networking certifications, such as CompTIA's Network+, Cisco's CCNA, and Microsoft's MCTS: Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration.
Fundamental skills and courses to look for in a network administration degree program include systems administration training, LAN & WAN installation & configuration, routing & switching, and network security training. A networking degree that includes certifications will help you graduate with a distinct competitive advantage. Effective communication skills are also key, as network administrators communicate complex ideas and solutions to both technical and non-technical employees. Computer networking is a rich and vast domain, so beyond the basics, choose a degree with the courses that spark your interest, or those featuring networking skills that are hot right now, e.g., virtualization or cloud computing.

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