How Much Do Network Administrators Earn?

A network administrator, often called a network and computer systems administrator, is the trained technician responsible for getting a network system up and running efficiently. Network administrators have many duties, including being in charge of computer hardware and software upkeep. They also design, implement and maintain network systems. They monitor networks, install security programs, test for vulnerabilities, and ensure the network and organization is operating as efficiently as possible. Here is some information on wages and wage potential for network administrators.

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What Factors Affect Wages?

The amount a network administrator earns can vary by many factors, including years of work experience, degree level, employer and geographic location. How much in demand a worker is can also affect wages. It kind of goes back to the principle of supply and demand. If a specific position is in demand, the individual is more likely to be offered a higher wage. Education and work experience affect wage potential as well.

If two network administrators both applied for the same job, and one was fresh out of college while the other has five years of work experience, the higher wage would most likely go to the administrator with more experience because there would be less time required for training. What employer an administrator works for also plays a role in determining wages.

A small company with 20 employers will probably not be able to offer the same wage as a large multi-million dollar corporation with hundreds of employees. Lastly, geographic location can play a large part in earning potential because every state or city has a different cost of living and pays different wages.

Average Wages for Network Administrators

The average wages for network administrators will also depend on who is doing the research. A May 2017 wage report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicates that an average wage of $86,430 was earned by network administrators. They report that administrators in the lowest 10 percent brought in about $49,830, while those at the top 90 percent earned $130,200. Salary.com reports that network administrators earned a median annual wage of $57,269. They list the 10 percent to 90 percent ranges at $38,134 – $79,497. These reports were as of May 2018.

How Geographic Locations Affect Wages

Geographic location plays a large part in determining wages for all employees, and network administrators are no exception. Below are the top-paying states for network administrators, the lowest-paying states and the average wages for each, according to the BLS.

  • Maryland – $107,240
  • New Jersey – $100,220
  • District of Columbia – $98,020
  • California – $96,420
  • Virginia – $94,380
  • Puerto Rico – $47,040
  • Montana – $61,380
  • South Dakota – $61,840
  • Idaho – $64,310
  • Louisiana – $65,090

As you can see, there is a huge difference between Louisiana at $65,090 and Maryland at $107,240. It could be demand, cost of living difference or a combination of both. It would definitely be advantageous for network administrators to browse around before accepting a job if they don’t have a problem relocating.

Network administrators are part of a field that carries much responsibility. If their network is violated, it could affect the profitability of the entire company, so it’s vital that network administrators not only be highly qualified but also keep up with current technology. Working as a network administrator not only brings good wages but also offers many rewarding challenges.