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A network and computer systems administrator’s greatest contribution is maintaining an organization’s work flow and keeping its lines of communication open. This work is not for the faint of heart. In a single day, he or she may encounter stacks of servers, dozens of crisscrossing network cables and major malfunctions with the hardware and software that runs the company’s local area and wide area networks. Since companies depend on their networks for so much of their work, problems must be corrected swiftly and completely. Aside from identifying network issues and fixing them, computer systems administrators must also make updates to all equipment and software so they’re current. Another important aspect of the job is ensuring email and data storage networks work properly and employee workstations are connected to the central computer network. They also set up and maintain an organization’s computer servers and train new users on how to use relevant hardware and software. Some network and computer systems administrators also manage telecommunication networks so employees can work from home or on the road, which is becoming more and more important as new technologies allow employees to connect outside the office.
As its low unemployment rate of 4.1 percent indicates, this is an in-demand profession that’s expected to grow as employers invest in new technology and faster mobile networks. More administrators will also be needed to implement upgraded security measures to protect workplace computer systems. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts employment growth of 11.7 percent between 2012 and 2022, which should lead to approximately 42, 900 new positions over this period.
Network and computer systems administrators earned a median of , 000 in 2013, or approximately .58 per hour, according to the BLS. The best-paid 10 percent earned more than $117, 150 in 2013, while the lowest-paid made less than $45, 270. The best-paid computer and network administrators work in the metropolitan areas of Hagerstown, Maryland; Edison, New Jersey; and Palm Bay, Florida.
|75th Percentile||$93, 950|
|25th Percentile||$57, 560|