IT is booming, and it provides professionals with an exciting, engaging, and profitable career path. Industries from healthcare to manufacturing depend heavily on the skills of their IT professionals. Technology is quickly changing the way work is done, how companies engage with clients, and the products and services customers are investing in. If you are at all interested in exploring a career in IT, there are many, many opportunities for you to grow your career in a big way.
One of the most interesting and engaging opportunities in tech right now is the role of the network administrator. Here’s what companies are looking for from their network administrators, and what you need to bring to the table to qualify for the opportunity.
Network administrators are counted on to handle LAN/WAN protocol, software, and hardware. They organize, install, and support an organization’s computer systems, including network segments, intranets, and other data communication systems. They spend their day troubleshooting and are often needed to be on call in case of a network emergency or failure. Depending on the needs of the corporate network in question, there are different degrees to which a network administrator may be called on, but for all scales there are certain skills and certifications that help employers identify the most qualified workers.
Day to day, a network administrator may work to clarify an organization’s system needs and install network hardware and software to meet those needs, make necessary upgrades and repairs to existing networks and make sure that the system is operating correctly. They maintain network and computer system security to a degree, as well as evaluate and optimize for network performance. They add users to the network and assign security permissions as well. They often train users in proper use of hardware and software and troubleshoot problems when a user or monitoring system alerts them to an existing issue.
Required Skills and Education
Although some employers require only a postsecondary certificate or an associate’s degree, most require a bachelor’s degree in any IT role. There are several different degree programs that focus on a computer network and system administration. But as administrators work with computer hardware and equipment, a degree in computer engineering or electrical engineering is usually acceptable as well.
Companies generally look for their network administrators who are certified in the products they use. Certification programs usually are offered directly from vendors or from vendor-neutral certification providers. Microsoft and Cisco offer some of the most common certifications in this field, which validates the knowledge and skills required of network administrators from the companies who build the components of the system directly.
Outside of traditional education and qualifications, network administrators benefit from some key skill sets that support them in their work. Analytical skills are needed to evaluate networks and systems to make sure they perform reliably and are adapted to changing user needs. Communication skills are important for administrators who must describe problems and solutions to non-IT workers who still count on the network to accomplish their business goals. The ability to multi-task and problem solve is also critical in this role, as is often the case in most technical roles such as this.
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Are you looking for your next job as a network administrator? The team of recruiters at ESGI is ready to help you take the next step in your career. Contact us today to get started!