Computer Networking Career Information

Begin a career in computer networking to help users stay connected.

Keeping People Connected

computer networking specialist fixing computer

Providing assistance and advice to computer users are two responsibilities of computer networking specialists.

Computer network technicians respond to inquiries from their organizations' computer users and run diagnostic programs to keep networks up and running. They also install and repair computer networking hardware and software. In addition, they sometimes write training manuals and train computer users to use new networking hardware and software.

Computer Networking Specialist Education

The technical skills required to become a computer networking technician may include expertise in one or more of the following: UNIX Shell/Perl Scripting, UNIX administration, Windows administration, SQL training and network security (firewalls and spamwalls). If you're thinking of a career in computer networking, you'll also need working knowledge of PC-compatible hardware and software.

Most employers prefer to hire computer networking specialists with some formal college education. However, the type of degree is sometimes secondary to relevant experience and training. Some employers require a bachelor’s degree in computer science or information systems; others may require only a computer-related associate degree. Computer networking certification and practical experience demonstrating network skills is essential for all applicants with or without a university degree.

Even if you're already working in computer networking, continuing education is still of prime importance because the industry changes so quickly. In order to stay competitive and achieve your career goals, additional information technology training is often desirable—or required.

Typical credentials for computer networking specialists include the following:

Computer Networking Specialist Salaries

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2016-17 Occupational Outlook Handbook, the median national annual salary for network and computer systems administrators is $75,790. Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors. National long-term projections of employment growth may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth. Read more about computer networking career salaries.