Network Engineer How to Hire, Salary Data, and Job Descriptions

A network engineer’s job responsibilities are initiating, maintaining, and protecting a company’s communication network. They are also responsible for things like setting up email accounts for new employees, supplying technical support, and communicating with third party providers if necessary. 

Network engineers can work in a variety of industries, providing IT support, and facilitating interpersonal communication between colleagues and employees. This position is perfect for those who enjoy working in IT but don’t want much management responsibility.

Sample job description #1

The Network Engineer will provide advanced support of the global network, including design, installations, and maintenance.

Part of the Network team, this role will interface with multiple teams throughout IT and ABC Company Business Units to serve as the go-to for understanding business challenges and determining where network solutions can be of assistance, troubleshooting issues, and new projects.

This is a highly visible and critical role to the success and health of the ABC Company network. We are looking for someone who is ready to help bring network solutions to relevant business opportunities, solve problems, make improvements, and contribute to the overall architecture of the ABC Company infrastructure.

As a network engineer, you will

  • Design, configure, and coordinate the installation of new remote office routers, switches, and circuits
  • Design, configure, and manage the installation of new, or upgraded datacenter network infrastructure equipment including core switches, WLAN controllers, datacenter-class routers
  • Provides day to day support of network environment and monitors existing network capacity and identifies areas that need to be increased. Also provides after hours/weekend support on a rotating, on-call basis
  • Participates in the management of data circuit vendor support calls and escalates as needed
  • Develops and maintains technical documentation
  • Identifies and provides support and resolution for network problems on the LAN/WAN
  • Overall design of the load balancing environment including architecting and implementing global load balancing, taking into consideration disaster recovery strategy
  • Provide 3rd level technical support assistance to the Tier 1 and Tier 2 support staff to diagnose and resolve application issues.
  • Supply Service Desk and Tier 3 Support Technicians with documentation and procedures for resolving common or recurring problems.
  • Create and maintain technical documentation for the web and application environments, including network diagrams, installation and configuration procedures, troubleshooting guidelines, and operational procedures
  • Assist in the management and configuration of the F5 Application Delivery Controller infrastructure

What makes this opportunity great

  • Compelling careers working side-by-side with the best in the business
  • Information technology is a core part of Baird’s business strategy and plays a critical role in the growth and transformation of the firm.
  • Computer World Best Company to Work For with collaborative culture that values diverse backgrounds and perspectives while emphasizing teamwork and a strong sense of partnership.

What we look for

  • Demonstrates working knowledge at a CCNA level for Cisco routers, switches, wireless LAN equipment, and IOS. VoIP experience a plus.
  • Track record of working within an enterprise network team with a packet capture analysis and decoding (Wireshark, Network Observer)
  • Strong understanding of SD-WAN and/or SDN solutions
  • Proficient enough in Visio to produce network diagrams
  • Creative troubleshooter with the ability to work in a fast paced, ever changing environment
  • Strong communication and collaborator with teammates, clients and vendors. Knowledge of the business impact of the technology you support, you will need to determine priority and feel comfortable educating others and making technical decisions
  • Ability to communicate and work effectively in a team environment
  • Exceptional organizational skills with the ability to prioritize multiple projects
  • Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science, MIS, or Business Administration. A minimum of five years experience in a technical role with experience in Cisco routers and switches

Sample job description #2

We are looking for a talented and inquisitive Network Operations Engineer that possesses a thorough knowledge of IT and video systems, a good knowledge of computer applications, and knowledge of video tape formats. The candidate must be able to work with accuracy, precision, and consistency in a fast paced, high-pressure environment. The candidate must also be detail oriented as the position requires the ability to troubleshoot, and come up with solutions to problems quickly and efficiently. This position does require nights and weekend work to be available if, and when, issues arise that require IT/Engineering support.

What you’ll do

  • Maintain the Networking, Video, and audio, infrastructure in the (City, State) office
  • Work with the Senior Director of Digital Operations to create a regular scheduled day of maintenance
  • Work with outside contractor to understand our Ingest system (knowledge of Centos OS required)
  • Work on the local SAN to maintain file systems and structure
  • Tracking issues when files fail and resolve any broken file issues
  • Manage multiple projects with rapidly changing priorities
  • Work closely with the ABC Company Production Team to verify what content is ingested and available on the SAN
  • Comprehensive error reporting to various stakeholders
  • Maintain working knowledge of the conferences that we are working with and the content that needs to be ingested on a daily basis
  • Ability to communicate effectively to clients when problems arise

What you’ll need

  • Minimum 5+ years of experience working with Networking systems, and Broadcast video systems
  • Knowledge of Microsoft OS systems, including Server 2012 and above, Mac OS, Linux (Centos)
  • Knowledge of Adobe CC, Premiere Pro, Media Encoder, and After Effects
  • Ability to configure network switches and troubleshoot when issues arise
  • Experience managing schedules in either Microsoft Excel or similar programs
  • Experience working with live events
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Ability to work well with others during stressful situations
  • Ability to multitask well
  • The ideal candidate will have a strong knowledge of video, audio, and IT systems
  • The ideal candidate should have a strong interest in sports and technology
  • This position does require working nights and weekends during College sports season

Sample job description #3

Does this describe you?

Your aim is to ensure the integrity of high availability network infrastructure to provide maximum performance for your users.

As a network engineer, you’ll have responsibility for setting up, developing and maintaining data networks within an organization or between organizations. You’ll offer support to users, who can be staff, students, clients, and customers, as well as troubleshoot any problems that arise. This may, in some cases, involve designing and implementing new networks and hardware.

You will be exposed to new and exciting technologies that will push your abilities and enlarge your skills and horizons.

Some of the key responsibilities of this position include:

  • This position will focus on as a network administrator for ABC Company including various remote sites throughout (State) metro areas.
  • Responsible for delivery of tasks in accordance with accepted project plans. Communicates with other departments to report and resolve software, hardware, and operations problems
  • Establishes and maintains network users, user environment, access lists, and security
  • Responsible for remote office support
  • Responsible for support of remote users
  • Works with IT Group to design and implement network topologies
  • Load balancing technologies and support various internal to university customers and data center environment
  • Maintains circuit documentation
  • Data networking layer 2 and layer 3 support
  • Understanding of LAN and WAN environment, which includes basic Routing and Switching topologies, Wireless (802.ln, a, g, ac), VPNs (IPsec, SSL and others), Ethernet, Carrier Ethernet, and MPLS
  • Strong analysis and problem solving skills and IF packet analysis
  • Escalates issues to vendors and management
  • Takes a proactive approach to mentoring other staff members
  • Solid knowledge of IP routing protocols such us BGP, OSPF, ISIS, and EIGRP
  • Special projects as assigned

We are looking for someone with:

  • Curiosity, motivation, and a desire for continuous learning
  • A reliable team worker
  • Strong technical skills in a data networking field
  • A collaborator with a focus on providing solutions based on the requirements and necessary outcomes of those whom we serve
  • VPN and tunneling techniques (GRE, IPsec, DMVPN, MP-BGP)
  • Routed protocols such as lPv4 and lPv6
  • Cisco router and switch configuration and administration
  • Strong Routing Skills with ISIS, MP-BGP, OSPF. Source routing knowledge is a plus
  • Virtualized networking (MPLS, VPLS, LDP, SR, PW, VXLAN, VTEP)
  • Strong Layer 2 technology skills including IEEE 802.3, 802.1D, 802.1w and 802.1s
  • Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, ‘RADIUS, and TACACS
  • TCPIP networking (IEEE 802.3)
  • Multicast Protocols and topology (Auto-RP, BSR, RFC1112, PIM, IGMP, CGMP, RPF, BIDIR-PIM, MSDP, SSM, and Anycast)
  • Load balancing technologies (focus on LTM, GTM, and others)

We also have a few minimum requirements:

  • Graduation from an accredited college or university with a bachelor’s degree in computer science or closely related field
  • Substitution: A combination of work experience in the occupational field or specialized subject area of the work assigned to the job, which provided the same kind, amount, and level of knowledge acquired in the required education, may be substituted on a year-for-year basis for the bachelor’s degree
  • 3 years experience working in data network field

*Full detailed job description given to those identified for interviews.

Required: Applicants must meet minimum qualifications at the time of hire.

And we would love to hire someone with these additional qualifications:

  • Cisco certification(s) – CCNA/CCNP
  • Large Cisco network switching and routing experience
  • Experience with data center switches and environment (such us Nexus family and ACI topology)
  • Knowledge of and experience with VPN and wireless networking
  • Three years of professional experience working in an enterprise class higher education environment

Average salary and compensation

The average salary for a network engineer is $140,800 per year in the United States and an average of $150,700 with a yearly bonus included. Salary will vary depending on your location, the size of the company you’re working for, your education, and how experienced you are.

LocationSalary LowSalary High
Phoenix, Arizona$148,700$172,900
Los Angeles, California$176,500$195,100
Denver, Colorado$139,300$162,600
Washington, DC$169,800$198,100
Miami, Florida$138,750$161,800
Orlando, Florida$127,950$149,300
Tampa, Florida$129,250$150,700
Atlanta, Georgia$135,500$158,100
Chicago, Illinois$155,850$181,800
Boston, Massachusetts$168,500$196,600
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota$134,300$156,700
New York City, New York$177,400$206,900
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania$144,450$168,500
Dallas, Texas$140,650$164,100
Houston, Texas$140,000$163,300
Seattle, Washington$162,200$189,200
National Average$126,700$154,800

Sample interview questions

  • How do you stay on top of changes in the industry?
  • What protective measures do you put in place to secure your network?
  • Can you draw an example of a network topography you are experienced with?
  • What is your troubleshooting process?
  • What assets can you bring to our company?
  • What certifications do you have? Can you tell me about them?
  • Are you willing to take further continuing education courses?
  • What is your process for managing upset clients?
  • Are you more comfortable with working in a team or on your own?
  • What steps would you take to ensure faster network speed?
  • How would you go about adding more connections to a network that is already at capacity?
  • Walk me through your process for scaling a network.
  • Tell me about a time where you had an issue with a network and how you resolved it. 
  • What made you choose a career as a network engineer?
  • Have you ever had a conflict with a fellow employee or boss? How did you resolve it?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?

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