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Posted On: January 8, 2018 by Henry R. Steele

The following article discusses the career path of Network Architect. Learn about how to become one, education requirements, job duties, traits and qualities, national salary outlook as well as top national employers of Network Architects.

Job Duties

Network architects are tasked with creating an effective design of the network for the organization, while regularly reviewing its capabilities and requirements as well. They validate design plans at top level for the best network implementation. The have to be very organized, therefore, paying attention to the smallest details so that incompatibility and other types of network issues do not occur. They frequently report on their progress to the supervisors and administrators, who are also made aware of any issues they encounter. Network administrators are usually hooked to their own computer that enables them to check the various security requirements and network settings and keep intruders out.

Network architects also ensure that the integrity of the network is maintained by installing and coordinating the maintenance of various software and hardware tools. They technically guide and support users with regards to the complex local area networks and wireless networks. They also manage the expectations of their clients by ensuring that all relevant network protocols and standards are being followed. Furthermore, they ensure that the most up to date technology is always installed, ensuring that the computer system is fit for purpose. Finally, they regularly report on their findings.

Other job duties of a network architect include:

  • Evaluating newly available technology, determining whether implementing it validates its cost.
  • Being the first line of contact for those experiencing problems and coming up with out of the box solutions.
  • Checking the technical infrastructure, improving it where needed, according to the research and development department’s requirements.
  • Performing network systems designs in data centers that are web centric.

Where We Work

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 162,700 computer network architects in 2016. The largest employers of these professionals were:

  • Computer systems design and related services: 26%
  • Wired telecommunications carriers: 8%
  • Management of companies and enterprises: 7%
  • Insurance carriers and related activities: 5%
  • Educational services; state, local, and private: 5%

How to Become

Generally, a bachelor’s degree in computer science or networking is required for this position. Network architects are also expected to have professional experience in networking capacities. They may also obtain security and industry certifications.

Education Requirements

A network architect usually has at least a bachelor’s degree, with fields such as engineering, information systems, and computer science being particularly popular. If their degree is in a field relating to computers, then network architects will have had real world experience in issues such as database design and network security. This means that they are able to work with the huge array of technologies used in modern networks.

It is becoming increasingly common for employers to search for network architects who have a master’s degree, particularly the master in business administration (MBA) with an information systems specialization. This provides them with further in-depth knowledge on courses related to both computers and to business.

Usually, between five and ten years’ work experience in IT systems is also expected. Often, network architects started their career as computer systems or network administrators. Others come from professions such as computer system analysts or database administrators.

Software firms and other product vendors such as SAP, Cisco, and Microsoft offer a variety of certification programs. It is recommended that network architects hold these certifications as these certify their skills in regards to the products they use. However, this is often sponsored by the employer.

Traits & Qualities

The most effective network architects have the following traits to some degree or other:

  • Strong analytical skills
  • Very detail oriented
  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Leadership skills
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Strong communication skills, both verbal and written
  • Good team players but equally being able to work under minimum supervision

Minimum Education

Bachelor’s Degree

National Salary

The national average salary estimate for Network Architect was $123,709. This number is estimated from over 490,824 employees, users past and present job advertisements from Indeed.com. This equates to an hourly salary of $64.43 and monthly of $10,309.

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$49,000

$232,000

Salary Distribution

Salary by State

The following section lists Network Architect salaries in each state around the country. The figures are based on the total number of job postings through Indeed.com. For example, New York had the largest quoted salary of $160,238 while Arkansas had the smallest quoted salary of $88,032.

Arkansas Iowa Missouri South Carolina
Arizona Illinois Mississippi Tennessee
California Indiana North Carolina Texas
Colorado Kansas New Jersey Utah
Connecticut Louisiana New York Virginia
DC Massachusetts Ohio Washington
Delaware Maryland Oregon Wisconsin
Florida Michigan Pennsylvania
Georgia Minnesota Rhode Island
Arkansas$88,032 Rank: 34th
The average salary ranks 34th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like k tek resourcing.

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$23.25

$72.75

Salary Distribution
Arizona$124,304 Rank: 12th
The average salary ranks 12th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Apex Systems, Career Evolutions, VincentBenjamin, and DISYS.

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$63,000

$200,000

Salary Distribution
California$134,723 Rank: 4th
The average salary ranks 4th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like InfoStaff, NETROCON SYSTEMS, Randstad, and VTA Telecom Corp..

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$51,000

$256,000

Salary Distribution
Colorado$112,748 Rank: 20th
The average salary ranks 20th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Denver Public Schools, Quadrant Resource LLC, V Dart, Inc., and Select Source International.

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$57,000

$186,000

Salary Distribution
Connecticut$119,920 Rank: 16th
The average salary ranks 16th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CyberCoders and Robert Half Technology.

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$60,000

$195,000

Salary Distribution
DC$104,951 Rank: 31st
The average salary ranks 31st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Bowman Williams, Prism Inc., and Robert Half Technology.

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$33,000

$215,000

Salary Distribution
Delaware$147,163 Rank: 2nd
The average salary ranks 2nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Request Technology – Brian Martin and Request Technology.

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$74,000

$232,000

Salary Distribution
Florida$108,806 Rank: 23rd
The average salary ranks 23rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like TEKsystems, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Ascendo Resources, and Synergy Business Consulting.

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$42,000

$207,000

Salary Distribution
Georgia$120,163 Rank: 15th
The average salary ranks 15th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like TEKsystems, BIGCODE, Synergis, and Mustang Technical Consultants.

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$56,000

$207,000

Salary Distribution
Iowa$105,463 Rank: 30th
The average salary ranks 30th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology.

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$53,000

$160,000

Salary Distribution
Illinois$120,248 Rank: 14th
The average salary ranks 14th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Huxley Financial Services, Blueline Consulting, LLC, Hirewell, and Solution Partners Inc..

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$54,000

$211,000

Salary Distribution
Indiana$114,029 Rank: 19th
The average salary ranks 19th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology.

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$57,000

$173,000

Salary Distribution
Kansas$108,153 Rank: 25th
The average salary ranks 25th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Artech Information Systems L.L.C. and Career Brokers, Inc..

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$54,000

$164,000

Salary Distribution
Louisiana$105,928 Rank: 28th
The average salary ranks 28th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology.

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$47,000

$188,000

Salary Distribution
Massachusetts$124,528 Rank: 11th
The average salary ranks 11th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Queen Consulting Group, BABB Technology Services Inc, The Judge Group, and Robert Half Technology.

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$63,000

$203,000

Salary Distribution
Maryland$141,718 Rank: 3rd
The average salary ranks 3rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Bowman Williams, CyberCoders, Request Technology, and Career Elites.

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$58,000

$262,000

Salary Distribution
Michigan$107,455 Rank: 26th
The average salary ranks 26th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like SJC4 LLC, OtterBase, Green Globe Technologies Lansing, and Interpro Inc.

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$54,000

$173,000

Salary Distribution
Minnesota$129,292 Rank: 7th
The average salary ranks 7th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Volt and Global Channel Management, Inc..

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$34.20

$200

Salary Distribution
Missouri$132,499 Rank: 5th
The average salary ranks 5th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology.

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$31.45

$200

Salary Distribution
Mississippi$94,985 Rank: 33rd
The average salary ranks 33rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology.

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$48,000

$152,000

Salary Distribution
North Carolina$112,438 Rank: 21st
The average salary ranks 21st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like V Dart, Inc., Technocratsinc, Chandra Technologies, Inc., and iStaff.

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$45,000

$209,000

Salary Distribution
New Jersey$124,932 Rank: 10th
The average salary ranks 10th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Son Soft Inc, Concept Software & Services Inc., itcaps llc, and Hire IT People, LLC.

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$52,000

$229,000

Salary Distribution
New York$160,238 Rank: 1st
The average salary ranks 1st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Perm Hires LLC, Huxley Associates, Tech-Nique Partners, and CyberCoders.

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$73,000

$281,000

Salary Distribution
Ohio$105,913 Rank: 29th
The average salary ranks 29th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Principle Solutions Group, Cybervation, Net2Source, and Robert Half Technology.

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$42,000

$197,000

Salary Distribution
Oregon$97,752 Rank: 32nd
The average salary ranks 32nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology and Able Forces Professional Services.

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$41,000

$178,000

Salary Distribution
Pennsylvania$108,156 Rank: 24th
The average salary ranks 24th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Technology, Syndicus, Inc., Pathfinders, Inc., and Workbridge Associates.

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$41,000

$205,000

Salary Distribution
Rhode Island$120,595 Rank: 13th
The average salary ranks 13th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like realsoft inc..

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$31.55

$94.70

Salary Distribution
South Carolina$117,161 Rank: 17th
The average salary ranks 17th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Nexsolv INC, Robert Half Technology, and CyberCoders.

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$59,000

$194,000

Salary Distribution
Tennessee$114,170 Rank: 18th
The average salary ranks 18th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Provisions Group, Robert Half Technology, and Vaco – Nashville.

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$58,000

$186,000

Salary Distribution
Texas$127,835 Rank: 8th
The average salary ranks 8th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like V Dart, Inc., WorldLink, CyberCoders, and Prestige Staffing.

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$56,000

$228,000

Salary Distribution
Utah$125,251 Rank: 9th
The average salary ranks 9th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like ConsultNet and University of Utah.

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$63,000

$195,000

Salary Distribution
Virginia$130,380 Rank: 6th
The average salary ranks 6th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like SUNRISE SYSTEM, Robert Half Technology, Son Soft Inc, and The Choice Inc..

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$53,000

$240,000

Salary Distribution
Washington$110,253 Rank: 22nd
The average salary ranks 22nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CyberCoders and Robert Half Technology.

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$44,000

$205,000

Salary Distribution
Wisconsin$106,790 Rank: 27th
The average salary ranks 27th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like V Dart, Inc., Q Data Inc, AT&T, and Robert Half Technology.

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$28.20

$92.00

Salary Distribution

Top 20 National Employers

According to Indeed.com, the following states had employers looking to hire a Network Architect. The quoted salary figure represents the average salary from all job postings by this employer.

Employer Name Location Average Salary

Learn More

Related Careers

Career Name Average Salary
Henry R. Steele
Henry R. Steele
Managing Editor
Henry is Managing Editor of BusinessStudent.com. He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.Follow on Twitter.com

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