A Network Administrator is an IT professional in charge of maintaining the connectivity between computers and applications that make up a computer network. The activities include deployment, configuration, maintenance and monitoring of active network equipment.
Main role of a Network Administrator is to ensure that network services are available and are working efficiently. Daily tasks include network address assignment, assignment of routing protocols and routing table configuration besides configuration of authentication and authorization – directory services.
Maintenance of network facilities in individual machines, such as drivers and settings of personal computers as well as printers, is part of the job. Additionally, network administrators also maintain certain network servers such as file servers, VPN gateways, intrusion detection systems, etc.
Network Administrators, who belongs to a mid to senior level of technical/network staff in an organization, are considered Tier 3 support personnel that only work on break/fix issues that could not be resolved at the Tier1 (helpdesk) or Tier 2 (desktop/network technician) levels.
NETWORK ADMINISTRATOR ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Roles and Responsibilities
Network Administrator’s tasks include ensuring security of stored information and giving access to relevant people. New hardware and softwares can be recommended for installation. Getting constantly updated with the latest advances in the field is required.
The network administrator roles often include maintenance of network facilities in individual machines, such as drivers and settings of personal computers as well as printers and such. Additionally, maintenance of certain network servers: file servers, VPN gateways, intrusion detection systems, etc. is part of the job.
The administrator is responsible for the security of the network and for assigning IP addresses to the devices connected to the networks. Assigning IP addresses gives the subnet administrator some control over the professional who connects to the subnet. It also helps to ensure that the administrator knows each system that is connected and who personally is responsible for the system.
- Customizing the network for their clients – designing the network as per the requirements of the individual or the corporation.
- Installing the necessary software and security systems according to the daily needs and usage of the customers.
- Reviewing the networks established by the network engineers as well as trouble-shooting them.
- Resolving any network crash at the earliest moment with the guidance of the network engineers.
- Data recovery from the crashed clients’ network or from the server terminals.
- Establishing an efficient support system for emergency contingencies at the network server.
- Trouble-shooting the problems at individual terminals and recording them for future reference.
- Creating and managing user accounts and restricting access based on the privileges allotted for different levels of users.
- Manage and control the network usage and its security with the addition of firewalls.
- Updating the security measures periodically.
- maintenance and administration of servers, desktop computers, printers, routers, switches, firewalls, phones, IP Phones, personal digital assistants, smartphones, software deployment, security updates and patches as well as a vast array of additional technologies inclusive of both hardware and software.
JOB OPPORTUNITIES FOR NETWORK ADMINISTRATOR
A graduate in Computer Science/Computer Engineering with good working and troubleshooting knowledge of various operating systems like Unix, Linux, Microsoft, Novell besides critical analysis, logical thinking and communication skills is usually preferred to be a network administrator.
It is a promising career and a qualified administrator is expected to be in demand. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has declared that the growth of this employment opportunity is much faster than that of the other occupations and will continue to grow until 2014.
Educational Requirements and Work Environment
A graduation in Computer Science/ Computer Engineering is preferred by the employers for Network Administrator profile. Good working and troubleshooting knowledge of various operating systems like Unix, Linux, Microsoft, Novell and so on is needed. Critical analysis, logical thinking and communication skills are required in addition to getting updated with knowledge on operating systems, client/server technology and network technology regularly.
You may opt to start a network consultancy yourself. Workplace environment will be the server station or work stations with computers having network problems and issues. During a network crash, one may have to work without time limits. In medium to larger sized teams, network administrators act as the Tier two or three support level. But the hardest part of network administration is the constant context switching.
Depending on the company and its size, network administrator may also design and deploy networks. They are generally mid-level support staff within an organization and do not typically get involved directly with users.
Required Training and Certifications
- Red Hat
Job opportunities and Outlook
Job opportunities for network administrator are in plenty. A qualified administrator will always be in demand and may be employed in varied sized firms in any industry.
Network Administrators may have to design a network on getting promoted to higher levels. They can also opt for diversification. They can move into computer programming, writing network security software programs and much more.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has declared that the growth of this employment opportunity is much faster than that of the other occupations and will continue to grow until 2014.