IT career spotlight: The network administrator

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A network administrator is responsible for ensuring the safe passage and storage of data, security access and other related functions.

U.S. companies from a wide variety of sectors, ranging from financial firms to construction businesses to oil production corporations, rely on network administrators to oversee the vast store of data that they need to function competitively in their industries. Additionally, these professionals are responsible for managing staff access, internal communication systems and security protocols that are essential to daily operations.

In most cases, a network administrator is working in a local area network (LAN) or wide area network (WAN) environment. Depending on the size of the company they work for, they may have a team of specialists working beneath them or they may simply perform their duties by themselves.

To become a network administrator, the educational requirements may vary. In most instances a bachelor’s degree in a related computer science field or specialization is important because of the base knowledge those programs impart.  Furthermore, certifications in particular areas of information technology (IT) that affirm a proficiency in a programming language or skill with a particular operating system, are helpful as well.

Professionals in this field enjoy competitive benefits, based on experience and skill. In 2010, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a network administrator’s average salary was $69,160, or roughly $33 per hour, in addition to various insurance packages or miscellaneous incentives. As well, the BLS forecasts a 28 percent increase in the number of network administrator positions between 2010 and 2020.

Those interested in transitioning from one IT field to another may want to consider this industry. For example, database architects who have a knowledge of complex system coordination might find the field worthwhile. If so, they should contact Inquest Staffing, an IT staffing agency that can help those considering a career change.

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