Data communications systems are set up and maintained, and their performance monitored by trained individuals referred to as computer network management professionals. In this article, we will look at the career path of a Computer network management professional and discuss what an aspiring Computer network management professional must do in order to pursue their career.
These professionals undertake various responsibilities including data security, e-mail systems, intranets, telecommunications, and wide and local area networks, among others. A number of industries employ managers and administrators of computer networks; these professionals belong to one of the highest paid and fastest growing career fields.
Job Potential for Computer Network Management Professionals
In 2009, there were about 339,000 systems and network administrators employed in the United States (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) (www.bls.gov). Job growth of twenty-three percent has been projected for computer network management professionals during the decade from 2008 to 2018, a rate that is projected much higher than other occupations. Information system managers and computer system managers who held around 287,210 jobs in 2009 are projected to enjoy excellent job growth prospects of seventeen percent during this period. In 2009, most network administrators were engaged in doing systems and computer design work; however, these professionals were employed by many other industries, including schools, telecom companies, and business management services. The most employed categories among computer network management professionals were managers of computer and information technology systems who were mainly employed by insurance carriers, business management services and software publishers.
Wage Potential for Computer Network Management Professionals
In 2010, entry level computer network administrators with less than two years of experience earned an average annual salary ranging from $39,089 to $64,579 (source: salary.com). The average annual earnings of the middle 50% ranged from $45,125 to $58,468. Professionals with two to five years of experience took home average annual pay-packets of $63,303, while the middle 50% of top-level computer network management professionals with more than ten years in the field took home annual pay-packets ranging from $77,816 to $98,892.
Earnings Improved Through Certification
Computer network management professionals who earned and maintained professional certifications from industry standard organizations and product vendors got a salary increase. As many as fifty-two percent of respondents in a survey in 2009 reported a salary increase after earning certification, and thirty percent reported receiving an increase of ten to twenty percent (source: Certification Magazine, (www.certmag.com). The International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium Inc. and Brocade accounted for the certification that corresponded with the five highest salary increases reported, each attracting average annual salary in excess of $120,000.