Internetworking technicians set up and maintain networks for companies and organizations. This includes installing and upgrading hardware and software throughout a facility. While you may only need an associate's degree to find employment, a bachelor's degree often opens up more job opportunities.
Internetworking technicians create networks for information systems and keep them functioning properly. They may work for manufacturers that produce network products and services or for information technology departments. Internetworking technicians may also work independently, assisting individual customers with network troubleshooting. These professionals often have an associate's or a bachelor's degree in computer network systems or a related field, and they may also earn certification through specific technology companies.
|Required Education||Associate's or bachelor's degree in computer network systems or related field|
|Other Requirements||Certification through technology companies may be beneficial|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)*||8% (for all network and computer systems administrators)|
|Median Salary (2015)*||$77,810 (for all network and computer systems administrators)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Internetworking involves a collection of individual networks that are linked via devices and programs to create one large network. Commonly known network configurations include a high-speed data network known as a local area network (LAN) and a data communications network that covers a large area known as a wide area network (WAN). Internetworking technicians design and maintain such systems.
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In addition to creating and designing networks and systems, internetworking technicians install and maintain programs for network routers, hubs, and switches. In many cases, they help troubleshoot problems for individuals and companies.
Internetworking technicians may also be known as computer systems and network technicians or networks systems and data communications analysts. According to O*Net Online, data communications and network systems analysts also:
- Test software reliability
- Determine future network needs
- Design network configurations
- Supervise network performance
- Provide security measures
Educational requirements will vary by employer and job title. In most cases, internetworking technicians need an associate's or a bachelor's degree and potentially a certification.
Undergraduate degrees in computer network systems, computer information systems or a related subject are available at several universities and colleges. These programs offer core courses in topics such as networking and information system concepts, programming, operating systems and information system security. Some programs also offer certificates.
Certification programs are offered by technology companies such as Microsoft and Cisco. Cisco offers the Cisco Certified Internetworking Professional and the Cisco Certified Network Associate credentials, as well as other certification programs. Microsoft offers two primary certifications on internetworking: the Certified Systems Administrator and the Certified Systems Engineer credentials.
Salary Info and Job Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment of network and computer systems administrators, including internetworking technicians, was expected to grow by 8% between 2014 and 2024. The BLS also reported the median annual salary earned by such administrators as $77,810 in May 2015.
Due to steady job growth, employment opportunities for network administrators, including internetworking technicians, should be good over the next decade. Holding a bachelor's degree and certification in the latest technology can help jobseekers catch the interest of employers.