The Big Picture Of Pursuing A Career As A Microsoft Networking AdministratorPursuing a career as a Microsoft Networking Administrator can be both rewarding and challenging.
There is a lot to learn in preparation for your career in this field, and you must be willing to upgrade those skills every few years in order to stay up-to-date on these ever-changing technologies.
Fortunately, there are many potential paths that you can take that will allow you to successfully become a Microsoft Networking Administrator. No matter which path you choose to follow, however, there are some basic skills that you must have in order to reliably handle your job.
There is no such thing as a typical day for a person working in this field. Every day brings both new challenges and familiar issues. Generally, you will need to ready to handle everyday maintenance tasks such as maintaining the domain accounts (creating new ones, deleting old ones and modifying existing ones) and ensuring the continual operation of your network's domain controllers along with all of the domain's member servers and workstations.
Diagnosing connection issues and addressing network security concerns will occupy much of your time. General maintenance of network components is essential to minimizing the impact of potential emergencies and staving off network service interruptions.
In order to handle your day-to-day tasks, you must first obtain the required knowledge. You must understand how Microsoft Windows 2008 Server and Microsoft Active Directory work together to manage a Microsoft network. This knowledge is not obtained easily.
If you learn well via self-study courses, there are a number of programs that may give you the required knowledge. However, many find that those courses lack the first-hand experience that is essential for a Microsoft Networking Administrator to address the unique issues that frequently occur outside of a classroom environment. For those individuals, there are accelerated classes available, which offer the hands-on option.
For a more measured and in-depth study of the necessary Microsoft technologies, a formal curriculum involving courses in Network Essentials, Client Operating Systems, Basic Microsoft Server Operating Systems and Advanced Microsoft Server Operating Systems is ideal.
Pursuing this sort of education will prepare you for the necessary certification exams that you must take in order for you to show your proficiency to potential employers.
There are a number of certifications that you can obtain to show that you are capable of understanding the technologies that you will be using as a Microsoft Networking Administrator.
You should expect to obtain a Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) certification in order to show that you have the skills needed to manage and troubleshoot network environments running Windows operating systems. The MCSA consists of two core exams on networking systems, one core exam on client operating systems and one elective exam.
You should also obtain CompTIA Network+ certification in order to validate your knowledge of networking principles.
The Network+ certification will prove your ability to describe the features and functions of networking components and to understand basic network infrastructure.
While certifications are very important to show your proficiency, the importance of a traditional college degree cannot be overlooked. Often, to save time and money, one might be compelled to forgo a traditional college degree in favor of focusing on acquiring the knowledge required to pass the certification exams.
It should be noted, however, that a college degree is still preferred among the vast majority of employers. Having a degree is seen as an indication that you are able to plan for and successfully pursue long-term goals. The degree also indicates a willingness to expand your knowledge into other areas.
For this reason, certifications should ideally be viewed as complementary to your college degree, not a substitute for it.
In conclusion, should you decide to pursue a career as a Microsoft Networking Administrator, you will be met with many challenges. So long as you obtain the required knowledge and learn the appropriate skills, you will be able to overcome these challenges and build a successful lucrative career.