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Network Specialist/ Administrator

A Network Specialist/ Administrator
· The specialist participates in alpha and beta test cycles of software looking for bugs or other usability problems.
· This job title sometimes refers to assembly line workers who examine and test chips, circuit boards, computers, peripheral devices.
· An effective QA specialist has a good eye for detail and a passion for perfection.
· Plans, installs, and maintains one of more local area networks.
· These specialists also provide network accounts and access rights to approved users.
· They troubleshoot connectivity problems and respond to requests from the network's users for new software. · Network specialists/administrators might be responsible for maintaining the security of a network, plus they often pick up Webmaster duties to maintain an organization's Web site.

· What Is This Job Like?
· How Do You Get Ready?
· How Much Does This Job Pay?
· How Many Jobs Are There?
· What About The Future?

What Is This Job Like?

Duties of a network administrator, for which nearly every network out there requires at least one, include the installation, configuration and maintenance of PCs, networking equipment and network operating systems. As well, a network administrator must deal with patching systems where necessary as well as locking down systems so that only authorized personal can access and use them. Network administration is a rather highly technical role. A good understanding of network operating systems, network equipment and networking protocols is essential, as well as a basic ability to program scripts and batch files. However, relatively strong interpersonal skills are also important, as the network administrator must understand the networking needs and problems of users and be able to address those issues in a timely fashion. Lastly, a network administrator must be diligent at documenting the network as well as be proficient at troubleshooting problems, often under tense situations. This includes knowing when to give up trying to be the hero when solving a problem and having the humility to go to outside sources for help.

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How Do You Get Ready?

A person may consider entering this field after attaining a Computer Science or Computer Engineering university degree or a one or two year computer diploma from a local technical institute. However, some Network administrators are quite proficient without this recommended educational background. Either way, at least some dedicated training and related certification in one or more leading network operating systems is highly recommended as is training and certification on network equipment and protocols. A large dose of caution is also important as is the ability to plan for what-if scenarios and to remember to provide management and users with a heads up on system changes and upgrades.

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How Much Does This Job Pay?

The median salary by years of experience, those with 20 years of more-the median is $56,978.

Salary information is so dependent on an IT professionalís particular skill set, experience and geographic location. However, fairly experienced network administrators can attain salaries around $50,000 USD.

Median Salary by Years Experience - Job: Network Administrator, IT (United States)
Median Salary by Years ExperiencePayScale Salary Calculator
Median Salary by City - Job: Network Administrator, IT (United States)
Median Salary by CityPayScale Salary Calculator
Median Salary by Employer Type - Job: Network Administrator, IT (United States)
Median Salary by Employer TypePayScale Salary Calculator
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How Many Jobs Are There?

In 2004, there were around 278,000 network and computer systems administrators jobs.

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What About The Future?

A network administrator often moves on to becoming a network or systems engineer and reaps higher salary rewards as a result. As well, those with exceptional communication and interpersonal skills often slide into management roles, but not generally until first becoming a network or systems engineer.

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