Insider Pro | Career Path
Become a Network Engineer
Want to come into the exciting field of network engineering but don’t know how? Join the hundreds of thousands of professionals who have built their careers through this pathway. Pass the CCNA and Linux+ to catapult your career in network engineering.
About this Career Path
You have chosen an amazing career in network engineering. There are currently over 8 million jobs and growing with an average starting salary of $50,000-$80,000 a year. You will learn how to protect, administrate, and build best in class networks. Master management of systems performance, troubleshoot and diagnose network issues, understand infrastructure protocols, application and transport to empower organizations to securely scale. Through hundreds of practical, virtual lab environments, you will gain real-world, hands-on skills with today’s latest tools and technologies.
In our community you will be guided by the top experts in network engineering. We have over 40 mentors including our Chief Mentor Mark Nibert who manages a network operations center for the US government. You will be learning with over ten thousand community members that are all building their career in the cyber security and technology space. As you grow your career you will now have a network of people that will help you continuously.
- This is an entry level career path, however, IT Fundamentals would be helpful to tackle some of the more advanced concepts
Once Completed You Are Ready To:
- Wireless networks
- Network troubleshooting
- Network security fundamentals
- Incident Response
- Network Defense
Apply for Jobs
- Network Engineer
- Network Architect
- Network Operations Specialist
- CCNP Switch
- CompTIA Linux+
BEGINNER LEVELEntry level career
APPROX 2.5 MONTHSStudy 10 hrs/week and complete in 2.5 months
$73,015Average Salary via Payscale.com
PROGRAM STARTS SOONGain access to materials immediately
Learn about Cybrary's Career Paths
Learn Through Courses
A Career Path contains a series of courses taught by Cybrary's community of instructors. Our instructors are subject matter experts, thought leaders, and inddustry veterans that deliver relevant, high-quality content.
Practice Your Skills
Every Career Path includes guided virtual labs chosen to give you real world experience in key topics you are learning. With unlimited access to the labs, you can practice until you're confident in your abilities, all in a safe environment that is accessible from anywhere, at anytime.
Assess Your Knowledge
Practice Tests give you confidence that you really know the material through standard questions and advanced virtual labs to test your skills.
Earn a Certificate
When you finish every course and complete the hands-on project, you'll earn a Certificate that you can share with prospective employers and your professional network.
Brick-and-mortar cybersecurity and IT training helps you gain theoretical knowledge but they don’t provide you with enough practical experience to prepare you for a job. You need guidance; so, you spend $3,000+ on classroom-based cybersecurity and IT training to get access to instructors and mentors. After 5, 8-hour days, and $3,000 later, you still walk away unprepared and unsure where to go from there.
Welcome to the Cybrary Career Path. Confidently, be guided down the path towards your next job and a new career. This three month program helps you take the right training, get the right hands-on experience and prove your ability through online assessment tools. No experience? No problem. Work with industry-leading mentors as they help you get started and guide you through the program.
Feel confident you are learning with the best
After having helped grow the careers of 2.5 million cybersecurity professionals around the world and individuals from thousands of companies, be rest assured you are choosing the right program from a provider with the track-record to show for it.
Work through a structured career path curated by experts and tied directly to popular industry job roles
Use virtualized, hands-on experiences to learn by doing gaining practical, real-world skills
Track your progress as you move closer to your goal with each learning session
Be confident you’re ready for the next step of your career journey upon completion
What you will learn on the Network Engineer career path
Once you join in our Network Engineer program, our team will help guide you into the right skill level based on your experience.
What Are Some Network Engineer Roles and Responsibilities?
Network engineers make and maintain network systems that all employees of the organization will use. This role involves many tasks and responsibilities that can vary, depending on the specific organization.
As a network engineer, you will likely be required to:
- Administer and maintain computer networks and related computer areas such as hardware, systems software, applications software, and configurations.
- Protect the security of hardware, software, and data by establishing, coordinating, and implementing network security procedures.
- Perform data backups and disaster recovery operations when necessary.
- Order and replace defective or outdated hardware components when necessary.
- Monitor system performance in order to determine when adjustments are necessary.
- Troubleshoot any software, hardware, or other system or network issues in order to diagnose and resolve the problem.
- Configure, maintain, and monitor email applications and virus protection programs.
- Work with network users to solve any systems issues.
- Coordinate access and use of computer networks.
- Operate master consoles for monitoring performance of computer systems and networks.
While the above are typical responsibilities for a network engineer, you may have additional duties depending on the organization you work for.
What Are Some Network Engineer Job Requirements?
At a minimum, network engineers must have a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study like computer science, programming, or engineering, but many employers prefer to hire candidates with an MBA in information systems. Employers also prefer their network engineers to have previous experience in the field, either as working with IT systems or in network administration.
Some of the other requirements for network engineer positions are:
- A solid understanding of network infrastructure and hardware.
- The ability to implement, administer, maintain, and troubleshoot network infrastructure devices.
- An understanding of network infrastructure protocols and application transport.
- The ability to provide detailed information for software and hardware upgrades or purchases.
- The ability to produce detailed network diagrams and documentation for the design and planning of network systems.
- Excellent analytical skills that allow for finding flaws or areas for improvement in complex network systems.
- Strong attention to detail and organization.
- Leadership skill when the position requires the network engineer to work with a team of other engineers.
- The ability to work well with a team of both upper management and subordinates.
- Dependability and flexibility.
- LAN and WAN experience, as well as network security experience.
- Initiative to stay up-to-date on the latest technology.
- An understanding of the hardware and wiring needs of the organization.
What is a Typical Network Engineer Job Description?
As a network engineer, you will be responsible for administering and maintaining an organization’s computer networks. The most common duties for the network engineer role include the maintenance of software, hardware, networks, and other related systems. Additionally, you will be responsible for protecting information, hardware, and software from threats, and replacing any defective hardware components when necessary. You will also work closely with network users to identify any issues and resolve them.
Being a network engineer requires that you have a strong understanding of network hardware and network infrastructure. It’s also necessary to have the ability to implement, administer, maintain, and troubleshoot various network devices including firewalls, WAPs, switches, routers, and controllers. In most cases, a network engineer position also requires extensive knowledge of application transport and network infrastructure protocols.
Overall, as a network engineer, you need to possess the knowledge and experience that allows you to make and maintain network systems that all employees of the organization will use. The complexity of these networks can vary widely depending on the organization and may require that you work alongside a Chief Technology Engineer. That means that excellent communication skills are also a must.
A Day in the Life of a Network Engineer
A typical day for a network engineer can vary widely depending on the culture and industry of the organization. While some network engineers will work a regular 9-5 workday, there are others who may be required to work evenings and weekends or be on call should any network problems arise. However, there are some daily tasks and responsibilities that are generally common to most network engineer positions. Based on those tasks, a typical day for a network engineer may include:
- Review any downed devices, trouble tickets, and network monitoring tools
- Diagnose and resolve those network issues and continually monitor ticketing system for new trouble tickets entered throughout the day
- Monitor network performance tools and investigate any issues
- Review and perform scheduled maintenance on network systems, as necessary
- Review device configurations to ensure they are correct and up to standards
- Work on any ongoing projects including writing project plans, monitoring and documenting the progress of the project, communicating with other departments and upper management regarding the project
- Administrative tasks like inventory and documentation
While the network engineer position is not a cookie cutter job, and daily responsibilities and tasks can be very different depending on the organization, the overall goal is to maintain network systems for users so that they can work efficiently and productively.