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Average Wages

Computer Network Architects


Industry Outlook

Career outlook is: excellent for the next 12-18 months

Job Description

Design and implement computer and information networks, such as local area networks (LAN), wide area networks (WAN), intranets, extranets, and other data communications networks. Perform network modeling, analysis, and planning. May also design network and computer security measures. May research and recommend network and data communications hardware and software.


Also known as:
Network Analyst, Network and Security Engineer, Network Systems Consultant, Telecommunications Analyst, Design Engineer, Network Consultant, Solutions Architect, Networking Systems and Distributed Systems Engineer

Average Career Wages

Co-Op / Internship

Securing an internship for this position is a good way in which to understand the expectations required for full time employment.

Typical Job Tasks

  • Recommend changes to improve computer or information systems.
  • Develop computer or information security policies or procedures.
  • Maintain contingency plans for disaster recovery.
  • Analyze data to identify or resolve operational problems.
  • Monitor the performance of computer networks.


  • Coordinate project activities with other personnel or departments.
  • Maintain computer networks to enhance performance and user access.
  • Develop models of information or communications systems.
  • Resolve computer network problems.
  • Develop specifications for computer network operation.
  • Provide technical support for computer network issues.
  • Update knowledge about emerging industry or technology trends.
  • Evaluate project designs to determine adequacy or feasibility.
  • Modify software programs to improve performance.
  • Install computer hardware.
  • Install computer software.
  • Estimate time or monetary resources needed to complete projects.
  • Document network-related activities or tasks.
  • Supervise information technology personnel.
  • Test computer hardware performance.
  • Conduct research to gain information about products or processes.
  • Collaborate with others to determine design specifications or details.
  • Communicate project information to others.
  • Design integrated computer systems.
  • Configure computer networks.
  • Manage budgets for appropriate resource allocation.
  • Manage financial activities of the organization.
  • Coordinate software or hardware installation.
  • Develop information communication procedures.
  • Manage documentation to ensure organization or accuracy.
  • Maintain computer hardware.
  • Develop testing routines or procedures.
  • Collaborate with others to resolve information technology issues.
  • Teach others to use computer equipment or hardware.


Required Skills

People in this career often have these skills:
  • Critical Thinking – Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
  • Reading Comprehension – Reading work-related information.
  • Active Listening – Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
  • Complex Problem Solving – Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
  • Speaking – Talking to others.
  • Judgment and Decision Making – Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.


  • Writing – Writing things for co-workers or customers.
  • Systems Evaluation – Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.
  • Systems Analysis – Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.
  • Coordination – Changing what is done based on other people’s actions.
  • Programming – Writing computer programs.


Projected Employment Numbers


2016 Employment

2026 Employment

Percent change

Annual projected job openings

What Experience and Education do you Require?

Individuals in this field typically have:

  1.  Bachelor’s degree
  2.  5 years or more work experience
  3.  No on-the-job training

Typical Education Level Required

Background Knowledge

People in this career often know a lot about:
  • Computers and Electronics – Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Telecommunications – Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
  • Engineering and Technology – Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • English Language – Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Design – Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.


  • Mathematics – Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.


Successful people in this career have ...

  • Oral Comprehension – Listening and understanding what people say.
  • Written Comprehension – Reading and understanding what is written.
  • Information Ordering – Ordering or arranging things.
  • Deductive Reasoning – Using rules to solve problems.
  • Problem Sensitivity – Noticing when problems happen.
  • Written Expression – Communicating by writing.
  • Inductive Reasoning – Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.


  • Near Vision – Seeing details up close.
  • Oral Expression – Communicating by speaking.
  • Category Flexibility – Grouping things in different ways.
  • Speech Clarity – Speaking clearly.
  • Speech Recognition – Recognizing spoken words.