Network Administrator Kaiwhakahaere Whatunga
Network administrators design, install and maintain computer hardware and software networks, from one-building LANs (local area networks) to worldwide WANs (wide area networks).
Network administrators may choose to become certified through associations such as the Institute of IT Professionals.
Network administrators may do some or all of the following:
- design and configure linked computer network systems
- install systems and their parts, such as cabling, routers, switches, servers, and wifi devices
- maintain networks, and identify and fix faults
- make sure networks are secure and have enough capacity
- assess and recommend network and software improvements
- provide support and technical assistance to network users.
Network administrators spend a lot of time using computers, so they need to know how to use computer equipment properly to avoid occupational overuse syndrome (OOS).
Useful experience for network administrators includes:
- technical computer work
- computer helpdesk and support work
- customer service.
Network administrators need to be:
- methodical, accurate and patient
- able to work well under pressure, and meet deadlines
- able to work well as part of a team, and with minimal supervision
- skilled problem solvers
- good communicators, to explain complex information about computers in easily understood terms.
Network administrators need to have knowledge of:
- computer systems, software and technology
- networking systems, methods and devices
- project management.
- usually work full time and often work evenings, weekends and on call
- work in offices in conditions that may be stressful when working to strict deadlines
- may travel locally or overseas to meet clients.
A tertiary entrance qualification is needed to enter tertiary training. Useful school subjects include digital technologies, maths, physics and English.
For Year 11 to 13 learners, trades academies and the STAR and Gateway programmes are good ways to gain relevant experience and skills.
Network administrators may progress to set up their own business, become enterprise architects (providing IT solutions for a whole organisation), or move into management roles.
Years Of Training1-3 years of training usually required.
There are no specific requirements to become a network administrator. However, you usually need:
- a diploma or degree in networking, systems administration, computer science or information systems
- relevant industry-based certification with a well-known company such as Microsoft or Oracle
- experience in related IT roles such as systems administrator.
Network administrators gain skills on the job and may attend courses to update their knowledge and skills.
If you are a graduate from other fields, you can gain a fast-tracked IT-related qualification through ICT Graduate Schools.
- Microsoft website - information on Microsoft certification programmes
- Oracle website - information on Oracle certification programmes
- NxtStep website - find IT internships and graduate programmes
- Summer of Tech website - information on the IT internship programme
- Tertiary Education Commission website - information on ICT graduate schools