Network administrator, IT manager
Network managers supervise the design, installation and running of IT, data and telephony systems in an organisation.
Salary Range: £22,000 to £70,000
How to become a network manager
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- an apprenticeship
- working towards this role
- training with a private provider
You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree before applying for a job as a trainee network manager. Relevant subjects include:
- computer networking and security
- networks and communications systems
- computer science
- digital communications and networks
You’ll usually need:
- 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
- equivalent entry requirements
- student finance for fees and living costs
- university courses and entry requirements
You could complete a network engineer higher apprenticeship or a digital technology solutions degree apprenticeship.
You’ll usually need:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
You could move into network management if you have relevant experience. For example, from working as a network engineer, senior IT support technician or more general IT manager.
You may be able to get industry recognised certification like Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) or CompTIA Network+ through a private training provider. You’ll normally be working in IT to do these or have a high level of technical ability.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- analytical thinking skills
- the ability to work well with others
- the ability to use your initiative
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- customer service skills
- persistence and determination
- to have a thorough understanding of computer systems and applications
What you’ll do
Typically your responsibilities will include:
- assessing a client’s computing requirements
- designing and testing network plans to meet your client’s needs
- putting in place network security measures
- planning back up and recovery systems
- organising preventative maintenance schedules
- monitoring and reporting on network performance and usage
- supervising technical staff
- managing network growth and development
You could work in an office.
Career path and progression
You’ll need to keep your skills up to date, for example in mobile and ‘cloud’ technologies. You can do this through professional development training and industry certifications.
You can move into project and information management, service planning and delivery, information security, business analysis or freelance consultancy.