Network administrators (LAN/WAN) are responsible for maintaining computing environments, identifying system requirements, handling repairs, installing upgrades, and monitoring network operations and efficiency for their organizations. They also confer with end-users and management, set up permissions and workstations, access protocols, perform security upgrades, and patch critical vulnerabilities in network systems.
These administrators work with vendors to fine-tune network stability and usefulness, and with end-users to handle training and data security measures. As the technology in this position is constantly growing and changing, those in this position must always stay up-to-date by researching and taking advantage of educational opportunities in their field.
This is typically an indoor position, though it may involve work from behind a desk to crawling through ceilings to install new wire-runs. These administrators must have an array of professional-level skills, including: network performance tuning, exceptional LAN knowledge, network design and implementation, strategic planning, coordination, and quality-focus.
Many positions require at least a bachelor's degree in computer science, as well as more specific certifications such as Microsoft Server, MySQP, MS SQL, and others which deal with hardware and software on a regular basis. In some cases, this may be a 24-hour on-call position, in which sufficient training and preparation will be provided.
Network Administrator, LAN / WAN Tasks
Oversee network infrastructure and monitor system reliability and performance.
Plan and implement network security, set up firewalls, manage host security, apply cryptography to network applications, and regulate file permissions.
Investigate, recommend, and install enhancements and operating procedures that regulate network availability.
Support operating capability of networks, both wireless and wired.
Respond to unplanned events that adversely affect the network or computing environment.