Modern businesses are powered by the flow of data across an internet-connected computer network. Businesses will lose their competitive advantage and bottom lines will suffer if they do not have a reliable, fast computer network. It is for this reason that a Computer Network Architecture is vital to the modern enterprise, irrespective of its size or stature.
Why do Network Architects do what they do?
In this network architect position, individuals analyze the current network needs of an organization or business to determine how those needs might change in the future. After identifying future network requirements, the network architect develops a plan for meeting those requirements.
It is important to accomplish these long-term goals while still meeting the organization’s short-term business objectives and financial obligations. The primary role of network architects and their teams may be to design networks, but they may also be asked to monitor, test, and troubleshoot business networks. Retooling outdated software and replacing outdated hardware may be necessary.
Is there a Personality Trait that makes a good Network Architect?
To be successful, network architects must have the ability to see the big picture regarding current and future IT infrastructure, not only for their organization but also for their industry and general business environment. To fulfill the job role, the individual must be able to produce a documented vision of network infrastructure today and in the future.
Network architects must be able to provide C-level management, employees, and other stakeholders with documentation of their vision for the current and future network. To bring that vision to fruition, stakeholders must be able to communicate why their vision is correct, and why those resources should be provided. System administrators and network engineers often have exceptional communication skills.
Beyond the technical expertise to envision the computer network needs of the future and the communication skills to convince stakeholders to support that vision, a network architect must also be able to thrive under the stress of making impactful decisions daily. A network architect provides guidance and direction to engineers and technical staff as a high-level manager. Every employee can’t thrive in a working environment where they have to make daily decisions.
Are our Network Architects required to have a certain level of Education and Experience?
As a minimum, a network architect should have a bachelor’s degree. There will probably be a technical area of studies such as information technology, computer science, or information systems management. Bachelor’s degrees in business administration or other areas may also be considered if they are accompanied by extensive experience. Additional training or courses in business communications should also be considered.
Recruiters are going to give the highest priority to candidates with long-term experience (5+ years) as a system administrator, network engineer, or network architect. Qualifications such as professional certifications and advanced degrees will be viewed as pluses, and candidates with these credentials will be given preference.
Certifications offered by CompTIA for Network Architects Include
CompTIA A+ Certification, CompTIA Security+ Certification and CompTIA Network+ Certification.
VMware offers the below Network Architect Certification
VMware Certified Professional (VCP) certification
Cisco offers the following Certifications for Network Architects
CCT (Cisco Certified Technician), DevNet Associate, CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate), CyberOps Associate, DevNet Professional, CCNP (Cisco Certified Network Professional) Enterprise, CCNP Collaboration, CCNP Data Center, CCNP Security, CCNP Service Provider, CCDE (Cisco Certified Design Expert), CCIE Enterprise Infrastructure, CCIE Enterprise Wireless, CCIE Collaboration, CCIE Data Center, CCIE Security, CCIE Service Provider and CCAr (Cisco Certified Architect).
Other Professional Certifications for Network Architects Include
Salesforce Certified Technical Architect (CTA), ITIL Master, Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA), The Open Group TOGAF 9, Zachman Certified.
How much can a Network Architect expect to Earn?
In 2019, the median annual salary for a computer network architect was $112,690, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. It is estimated that 160, 100 individuals work as network architects, and the growth rate is 5% annually, which is above average. The annual median salary amounts for network architects are slightly different on Salary.com and Glassdoor.
Computer Network Architecture – How to become One?
If you don’t know what path to take, it can be quite difficult to get a network architect job. Use this guide to get started.
1. Obtain formal training in Computer Network Architecture
A bachelor’s degree in computer science, information systems, or a related field will prepare you to become a network engineer, as it will teach you the basics of network architecture. Note that certain employers prefer applicants with a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) in information systems.
Businesses that conduct their business over the Internet face this particular challenge.
2. Become familiar with Network Architecture Concepts
Before moving into their main industry, most network architects gain five or more years of experience in a related field, like network administrator or computer systems analyst. They monitor the day-to-day operation of computer systems and networks, implement security measures to safeguard them, and recommend upgrades when necessary.
Those who move up the ladder often begin to organize computer network specialists to improve existing systems.
3. Obtain relevant Networking Certifications
It is arguably the best way to increase your chances of landing a job with the same vendor if you earn a vendor-specific certification. Ultimately, companies require their network architects to be certified in the products they use and manufacture.
Cisco is a fine example of this strategy: the Cisco Certified Design Associate (CCDA), a beginner-level certification, provides an overview of Cisco-related products as well as networking fundamentals.
Credentials of a senior Network Architect Include:
1. Salesforce Certified Technical Architect (CTA)
2. Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA)
3. TOGAF 9 Open Group Certification
4. Zachman Certified