Posted by Robert Half Technology on Tuesday, January 5, 2016 - 08:00 | Follow me
With its heavy dependence on communication tools, cloud software and always-connected applications, the modern office cannot function without a reliable computer network. It’s little wonder that IT professionals with network troubleshooting skills are in high demand.
Two of the most challenging roles to fill in the coming year are predicted to be network administrators and wireless network managers, according to a recent Robert Half Technology survey of more than 2,500 chief information officers.
If you are knowledgeable in these areas and searching for a new position, you’re in the driver’s seat. Here are some career trajectories that make good use of network troubleshooting experience.
Some IT professionals gain their expertise while in a role that’s not explicitly a networking position. For example, desktop support analysts — who also number among in-demand IT professionals — frequently need to resolve network problems. These specialists are expected to earn $54,250 to $80,500 in 2016, a 4.5 percent increase over this year’s starting salaries, according to the Robert Half Technology Salary Guide. A Network+ or an A+ certification from CompTIA can help you land a role as a desktop support technician.
Those who have three to five years of experience with hardware, software and network troubleshooting already possess many of the qualifications required to become a systems administrator. The starting salary for this role will range from $67,500 to $107,500 in the coming year, 5.3 percent higher than in 2015. A Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) certification can help you land this role.
If you have stellar network troubleshooting skills, excellent communication skills and are a solid problem solver, look into network administrator positions. These seasoned professionals are in charge of LAN/WAN systems, which include all upgrades, security protocols and connectivity issues. Their starting salaries are anticipated to range from $76,250 to $112,000 next year, a 6.4 percent jump from 2015. A Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) certification can help your job application stand out and perhaps net you a higher salary.
If you have several years of experience designing, configuring, implementing and troubleshooting network systems, your skill set could help you step into a job as a network architect or wireless networking engineer. Both of these jobs come with starting salaries in the six-digits and are in high demand. In fact, wages for wireless networking engineers are anticipated to see a year-on-year jump of 9.7 percent, the highest of any position in our Salary Guide. For these and other networking positions, a bachelor’s degree and the CCNA certification are either preferred or required qualifications.
When you have a solid history of network troubleshooting, you have in-demand skills for a range of telecommunications and networking jobs. To move up the ladder in your present specialty or segue into another IT role, keep learning about the many aspects of network operating systems, especially Cisco, Windows Server, IBM AIX and Aruba. The more you know, the further you’ll go.
Ready to make the most of your network troubleshooting skills? Check out the Robert Half Technology Salary Center for hiring trends, job search tips, a Salary Calculator and the latest ranges for an array of IT positions.