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What is the Job Description of a Network Engineer?

If you are hoping to become a network engineer with a company, then you will find the duties and responsibilities in this job description guide helpful.

The main job of a network engineer is to network different computer systems in an organisation or between different organisations.

After developing a good network between necessary computer systems, network engineers also maintain this network.

A perfect applicant for this job is required to possess strong communication and organisational skills.

Network engineers should also be detail oriented and good at solving problems.

These skills are very relevant for effectively carrying out your duties and responsibilities as a network engineer.

This career path and most other technology based careers have the problem of gender imbalance.

There happens to be more men in this field than women.

But necessary steps have been and are still being taken to strike a balance. On a daily basis women are being encouraged to explore the tech world.

Irrespective of gender, knowing and understanding the job description of a network engineer is a step towards succeeding in this career path.

Therefore, you will be doing yourself a great deal of favour by carefully studying this free guide on the job description of a network engineer.

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What does a network engineer do?

A network engineer is responsible for designing, developing, documenting and maintaining computer networks within computers in the same organisation.

They may also develop computer network within computers in different organisations 

Network engineers may work as a part of the IT department of an organisation.

Or, they may work externally, as a part of an IT consultancy firm or agency.

Different network engineers may perform different tasks. 

One network engineer may be assigned to designing and/configuring a network. While another may be in charge of maintaining an already designed and developed network.

Network engineers regularly visit the user end of a network system.

This helps them identify network issues users may face expeditely

Types of networks

Here are some of the network types a network engineer works with:

  • LANs – local area networks,LANs is uses for  linking a small area like a home,an office or a small group of buildings
  • GANs – global area networks, used for combining LANs, WLAN and WANs  with satellite mobile communication technologies
  • SAN – storage/system/server/small area network
  • MANs – metropolitan area networks, linking a large area like a college.
  • WANs – wide area networks, links computers nationally and/or internationally
  • WLAN – wireless local area network
  • CAN – campus/controller/cluster area network
  • PAN – personal area network
  • DAN – desk area network
  • VoIP – voice over internet protocol network.
  • Intranet
  • Extranet

Organisations greatly rely on the network that network engineers develop and manage to carry out their day to day activities.

What are the duties and responsibilities of a network engineer?

One of the most important parts of practically every job description is the duties and responsibilities section.

Come to think about it, how do you excel in any career path without knowing what your exact duties and responsibilities are?

Therefore, I will strongly advise that you take this section very seriously.

Here are some of the typically duties of a network engineer that you will commonly find in their job description:

1. Ensure optimum network performance

It is the duty of a network engineer to ensure that all networks are performing optimally.

They do this by troubleshooting network problems and scheduling upgrades.

Also, they work with network Architects to optimise network performance.

2. Securing network systems

They also have the responsibility of securing network systems by regularly monitoring virus protection software.

Network engineers also secure network systems by monitoring network access and use and putting all other security measures in place.

3. Preparing reports on network operations.

Network engineers collate necessary information concerning network development and management and compile them into a report.

After compiling the report, they also submit them to the organization’s management.

4. Staying updated with latest technology

As a Network engineer, you need to also stay up to dated with the latest technologies.

Whenever there is a new release, they plan and implement upgrades immediately.

Other duties and responsibilities of a network engineer include:

  • Designing, developing and managing computer networks.
  • Carrying out data backup and disaster recovery when necessary.
  • Securing data, software and hardware
  • Identifying problems with network and rectifying them
  • Removing faulty or damaged network hardwares and replacing them with hardwares that are in good working condition
  • Assessing the performance of networks 
  • Making adjustments to the network whenever it is necessary.
  • Training non technical staffs on the used of networks

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What qualifications do I need to become a network manager?

A network engineer typically have a bachelor’s degree in any of the following fields:

  • Computer science
  • software engineering
  • Computer system engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Electrical and electronics engineering
  • Physics a
  • Network security management

But, it is also possible to become a network engineer without a degree.

As long as you have a good understanding of network and transport infrastructure and hardwares and their application.

Those without professional qualification may enroll for accredited programs which provide certification to network engineers and students as well.

Some organisations usually have specific requirements depending on the current configuration.

Therefore, it is advantageous for both graduates and non graduates, to obtain Cisco certified network professional certification.

Employers also look out for those with some years of experience.

Experience in this field may be gotten through internship or holiday placements.

What are the skills a network engineer should have?

There are certain skills employers prefer network engineers to possess.

Usually, these skills are featured in a network engineer job description.

They are relevant because they help network engineers carry out their duties with much ease.

Some of the skills commonly featured in the a network engineer job description include:

1. Communication skills

A good network engineer should be able to communicate the technical and non technical aspects of their job.

This skill plays a very important role when working with your team and also when teaching non technical staff on the use of network systems.

As a network engineer, you should be capable of communicating effectively both verbally and in writing as well.

Good communication skills involve speaking and listening as well.

A good network engineer should be able to listen attentively to the needs of their clients.

So as to develop a good network system that suits their needs.

2. Teamwork skills

These professionals work as a team with other IT professionals as well as non technical staff.

Therefore, it is very important that they possess high team spirit

3. Ability to learn fast

If there is one thing that has never stopped happening to technology, it is it’s advancement.

A network engineer should be able to quickly learn the theory and application of new technological products.

4. Attention to details

A good network engineer should also be detailed oriented even when performing more than one task at a time.

This way, errors or mistakes can be avoided, or quickly identified 

5. Organisational skills

Network engineers are also expected to be organised at all times.

They should know how to plan and prioritize their activities.

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Where does a network engineer work?

With the increase in the use of technology in practically every aspect of life, there is also an increase in the number and type of organisation that requires the services of a network engineer.

Here are some of the typical employers of network engineers:

  • Banks
  • Management consultancies
  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • IT firms
  • Transport company/providers
  • Utility companion
  • Insurance companies
  • Logistics companies

Vacancies may be advertised online. through recruitment agencies and on local newspapers.

How much do network engineers make?

In the United States, the salary of network engineers ranges from $73,335 to $154,325 per year

On the average they make up to $104,650 per year.

These figures may vary slightly or greatly depending on your geographical location.

Some other factors that may determine the salary of a network engineer include:

  • Location: network engineers who work in more developed states or countries may earn more than their counterparts in other locations.
  • Experience: Those with more years of experience are at a better position of being paid more.
  • Qualification: more qualified network engineers are usually paid better than others
  • Employer: Individuals who work for large organisations such as Facebook or Microsoft usually earn more than those who work for smaller firms.

Network engineer work environment and schedule

Network engineers usually work in offices, they may have to travel to meet with clients.

Typically, they work on regular working days and hours.

Although, they may have to work over time or during weekends whenever they have a deadline to meet up with.

Is network engineering a good job?

For someone who has a flare for technology, YES, network engineering is a good job.

There is a regular increase in demand of those with tech skills, but few individuals available to meet these demands.

According to the US bureau of labor statistics, in 2015, job opportunities for IT professionals increase by 74%, and three quarter of these opportunities were open to network engineers.

Also, in 2017, the average salary of a network engineer was about $37,690 per year.

But, as of the time of composing this free guide on the job description of a network engineer, their average salary is now about $104,650 per year.

Conclusion: network engineer job description guide

This network engineer job description guide was compiled with aspiring network engineers in mind.

But, it can also be used as a template for creating a network engineer job description by employers.

Prospective network engineers should feel completely free to make use of this free guide to support their goal.

Employers who decide to use this network engineer job description as a template are also free to make necessary adjustments to it, in order to suit their organisation’s needs.

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Chibuzor Mbazuhttps://agro4africa.com/
Mbazu Chibuzor is a content creator and an agriculturist with the mandate of helping farmers to succeed in agriculture. When he is not talking about agriculture on his blog https://agro4africa.com, he goes about providing valuable information and motivation to students, employees and entrepreneurs. His dream is to see a #ZeroHunger world and he is working really hard advocating for that on his YouTube channel https://bit.ly/35xQmfX
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