A Step By Step Guide To Becoming A Network Engineer by@ankitdixit
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A Step By Step Guide To Becoming A Network Engineer

by Ankit DixitMay 7th, 2022
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Being a software engineer requires you to have many skills. Technical skills are easy to learn but soft skills are harder. In this post I share with you the skills I think software engineers should have to succeed in their career. If you were expecting skills such as "Writes clean code" or "Expert of databases" you will be surprised!

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Businesses are depending more than ever on networked devices to execute routine activities. As a result, they frequently require network engineers' assistance in the design, construction, setup, and maintenance of their computer networks. Learning how to start a network engineering profession might allow you to determine if this is the best path for you. In this post, we will cover what network engineering comprises and how to become a network engineer. 

Who is a Network Engineer? 

Network engineering is a technological domain that has given the network a new identity. An IT professional that works in the area of computer networking is known as a network engineer. They are also known as network administrators. These professionals are usually employed by a company's IT department and are in charge of ensuring that the company's computer systems and network devices are running seamlessly. They achieve this by consistently installing new hardware, executing diagnostics, and installing routine software upgrades as they become available. They should also take preventive actions to safeguard systems against malware and other potential network safety concerns.

If you follow the typical educational path, being a network engineer can take anywhere from five to six years. You must first get a bachelor's degree in network engineering, computer networking, computer science, systems engineering, or a similar discipline after completing a three-year or four-year bachelor's degree course. Following that, earning various network engineering certifications can take anywhere from six months to three years.

While a degree isn't required to get employed as a network engineer, possessing one can help you land a job with some of the industry's biggest goliaths, including IBM, Siemens, Microsoft, Cisco, AT&T, and others. Many firms insist on candidates having a master's degree. Some employers, on the other hand, may accept a bachelor's degree as well as vendor certifications.

When it comes to getting recruited, your network engineering experience is also important. In this industry, there aren't nearly as many skilled network engineers as there is demand in the market. You will be in great demand if you have a lot of experience developing, implementing, configuring, and troubleshooting networks.

The Step by Step Guide to Become a Network Engineer

Step 1: Get the required education qualifications

After completing your 10+2, you can enrol in a Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree programme in networking technology or a Bachelor of Technology (BTech), or a Bachelor of Engineering (BE) programme in computer science or a similar discipline. A formal education can assist you in launching a career in network engineering. Most firms, in fact, prefer applicants who have had formal training in network engineering or a similar discipline. After you finish your degree, you can pursue additional professional certifications.

Step 2: Learn the fundamentals of network engineering

Subsequent to getting your respective degree(s), learning the fundamentals of network engineering is one of the best things you can do to elevate your knowledge base. You can learn about the fundamentals of network engineering before turning towards getting certifications. Some of the fundamentals that you can learn about network engineering are:

MANs – Metropolitan Area Networks

LANs – Local Area Networks

PANs – Personal Area Networks

VoIP – Voice over Internet Protocol Network

SANs – Storage Area Networks

WANs – Wide Area Networks

CANs – Campus Area Networks

DANs – Desk Area Networks

WLANs – Wireless Local Area Networks

Step 3: Put some esteemed certifications on your resume

After you've learned the fundamentals of network engineering, you can get some esteemed certifications that will complement your resume. Consider taking the Comp TIA A+, Comp TIA Network+, and Comp TIA Security+ exams. These certificates range from basic to advanced IT skills. To advance to the next level, you need to pass one or more exams at each level. A certification course can take anything from six months to a little more than a year to finish.

Before going onto the Comp TIA Network+, you must pass the Comp TIA A+ test, which is a basic-level certification that provides basic IT knowledge. This credential will educate you on how to troubleshoot and operate various devices. These certifications, on the other hand, do not provide in-depth rules on a specific company's hardware. You have the option of earning the Comp TIA Security+ certification, which tends to focus on network security and associated topics.

Besides these vendor-neutral certifications, you can also opt for vendor-specific certifications from reputed names like Cisco, SolarWinds, Microsoft, Juniper, and others. These certifications offer in-depth explicit training on numerous facets of network engineering. 

Step 4: Thoroughly prepare for interviews

It's critical to be well-prepared when you have an interview for a network engineering position.

You should acknowledge that you're going to work in a technological field that is in high demand among businesses. Interviewers will likely ask you a number of questions to ensure that they can trust you and your skills if you are hired.

While you can never be totally prepared for each and every interview question, practising your responses to some of the more common ones is a smart way to get yourself in the right mindset and have some understanding of what you want to say. Also, there are a lot of questions that you can find online and practice. 

Step 5: Select the organizations you wish to work with and begin applying

You are qualified to enter the employment market once you have achieved your bachelor's degree and professional networking certifications. Prepare a well-formatted cover letter and resume, with your network engineering credentials prominently displayed. Start looking for network engineer jobs and applying for them. Also, while you're waiting for responses from potential companies, try to stay updated with industry trends and advancements. If you can find an internship or part-time employment in network engineering, take advantage of it. Remember that being a network engineer in a good firm is not the end goal; you can advance to roles such as network manager, chief technology officer, and so on. You can apply to tech giants like Microsoft, Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks, Intel, IBM, and Sophos. 

Click here to dive deeper into the salaries that network engineers are offered in the marketplace by various renowned companies. You'll also get a good idea of how much the market is willing to pay network engineers on the basis of experience level in the same blog. 

The Advantages of Becoming a Network Engineer

While monetary benefits are among the most important elements in determining a person's professional path, other lifestyle aspects, such as work culture, and having a good work-life balance are also important. Because of the financial rewards that come with being a network engineer, many network engineers love taking long vacations to unwind after a demanding work environment.

Because of their innovative thinking and problem-solving abilities, network engineers are highly respected members of society. As a result, it's no surprise that network engineers have some of the highest employability rates. This benefit assures that those with computer networking expertise will almost always have a steady job for a long time.

The following are some extra lifestyle advantages that come with a network engineering career:

  • Possibilities for a completely remote work environment (work from anywhere).
  • Creating inventive solutions to global issues.
  • A wide range of company-sponsored training is available.
  • High likelihood of being approved for significant purchases such as houses, vehicles, and signature loans.
  • Opportunities for advancement into management and leadership positions.

Final Thoughts

Network health will become more crucial to company leaders as the world continues to rely more on digital environments to get work done. Many, if not all, of today's corporate operations incorporate the use of a network, whether it's a local area network (LAN) or a wireless local area network (WLAN). When these networks face issues, all users who are executing tasks on these networks slow down. This leads to a rapid drop in the speed of the usage of networks.

Businesses, for example, now use VoIP to communicate with one another and with clients. When a network goes down, calls are dropped, and potential business is lost.

The nitty-gritties of all relevant systems are overseen by network engineers. They ensure that corporate goals and network standards are in sync and that networks are running smoothly.

This field is projected to have high demand in the near future. Hence, you must equip yourself with the necessary technical expertise if you're really looking to pursue network engineering as a career.