Systems administrators need to know about a wide range of computers and networks. While some focus on specific types of networks, many are responsible for designing and overseeing local area networks, wide area networks, and network segments. Depending on what their employers need, they may also develop and manage intranet and Internet systems.
Other duties that might fall within this job title include troubleshooting problems as they arise, reviewing networks to improve efficiency, and upgrading systems to match the evolving needs of employees and clients.
Systems Administrator Job Education Requirements
Most employers expect systems administrators to hold bachelor's degrees in computer science, engineering, or a related subject. Applicants with graduate degrees may find it easier to secure challenging positions with higher salaries.
Employers also pay attention to how much experience applicants have. Those without real-world experience may want to start their careers working as computer support specialists.
Systems Administrator Job Market
The job market for systems administrators is expected to grow by 12 percent between 2012 and 2022. This is about the same rate of growth as most jobs.
Specialists looking for more opportunities may want to search for jobs as systems analysts. This job title is expected to grow by 25 percent during the same period.
Systems Administrator Job Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for network and computer systems administrators was $75,790 in May 2014. Those at the highest level of earnings could expect to make about $120,000 per year. The lowest paid systems administrators made about $46,000.
Where a systems administrator works can significantly affect pay. At $96,500 per year, Maryland has the highest annual mean wage in the country. Other states that offer exceptional median wages include Virginia, District of Columbia, New Jersey, and California.