Computers and digital technology promise greater productivity for organizations. Documents, messages and money can be easily transferred with simple keyboard strokes or computer clicks. Cloud storage allows more capacity to store and access files with large content, including voluminous documents, video and audio. With the prospects of advanced and convenient information flow and storage come risks of malfunctions and cyber security intrusions. Successful attacks on systems and unsuccessful defenses and remedies to problems spell downtime and possibly paralysis for organizations. JR. system administrators have the task of ensuring that organizations do not succumb to technological breakdowns, but can harness the full benefits of digital technology and computers.
What Does a JR System Administrator Do?
Under the guidance and supervision of management or senior staffers, JR system administrators help oversee the efficient operation of network and computer systems. The job description involves design, set-up, maintenance and repair of systems. To accomplish their tasks, these administrators must summon their computer and problem-solving talents to stave off or remove glitches, attacks from hackers and disconnections that infect network and computer systems.
JR System Administrator Job Responsibilities – Resume
- Study the network and computer needs of organization or establishment and recommend system to senior staff
- Install computers, printers, wireless or other network connections and applications
- Assist with data back-ups
- Upgrade and repair computer systems, hardware drivers and applications
- Answer questions from staff
- Monitor performance of systems and advise senior administrators of problems, defects or potential security breaches
- Manage users’ access to network and permissions by users to change their computers or system
- Train employees and volunteers on use of computers, applications and network
- Locate sources and causes of data breach, server or network crashes and computer viruses
- Remove computer viruses, spyware and other malicious applications from computers or systems
JR System Administrator Essential Skills
Analytical. Junior system administrators need the ability to analyze a system’s performance in order to recommend changes or spot potential malfunctions or breaches. Observations of the system and data such as download times helps the administrator evaluate the system’s functions and efficiency.
Communication. Junior system administrators often advise workers with considerably less familiarity with computers and other forms of technology. These non-IT or non-computer staff members need computer and network concepts explained in non-technical terms.
Computer. The job description of a junior system administrators includes skills in handling hardware, installation of drivers for the hardware and applications, and examining the adequacy of computer and system security. These professionals should demonstrate knowledge in system components such as firewalls, wireless networks, physical and virtual memory drives and ports to connect devices such as printers, scanners and cameras.
Troubleshooting. To remedy problems, junior system administrators need skills in spotting the causes or possible causes and attempting fixes. The process may require multiple attempts and analyses of the malfunctions.
Becoming a JR System Administrator
Junior system administrators obtain the necessary knowledge and skills through formal post-secondary education and work experience with computers. Some employers may require their systems administrators to hold certifications to work on specific operating systems or brands of computers or applications.
Education and Training
Generally, a bachelor’s degree is required of aspiring junior system administrators. Majors include computer science, information technology, information science, computer engineering and electrical engineering. Students in these degree programs take classes in computer programming, math, database design and management, systems design and business analysis, among others.
With advances in technology, some companies may require or prefer candidates with master’s degrees. Master’s programs expose prospective junior system administrators to settings and specializations such as homeland security, project management, health information management, systems and software engineering and managing telecommunications.
Internships afford students seeking a career in systems administration valuable work experience. Interns can find spots in companies, nonprofits and government agencies. In the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), interns work alongside Field IT Systems Administrators. Other work experience can come via work in systems administration or information technology departments.
Junior system administrators may achieve an advantage by prior work in the particular industry. Those in the publishing or newspaper industry might bring experience in a newsroom or magazine performing layout and retrieving wire stories or copy, which involve the use of publishing applications and network systems. Exposure to a hospital or physician’s office prepares junior systems administrators to understand medical records and how practices communicate health data and service codes with Medicare, Medicaid and other health insurers.
Full-time work constitutes the norm for system administrators. As organizations rely on computers and technology for operations, junior system administrators must make themselves available for emergencies, system failures or questions by workers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately one quarter of network and computer system administrators logged in excess of 40 hours per week.
In 24-hour establishments, such as hospitals, residential care facilities, military installations and manufacturing plants, junior system administrators may very late hours and weekends.
By 2024, the number of network and computer systems administrators could grow to 412,800 from 382,600 in 2014, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This represents an eight percent rate of increase in the field.
The expanded opportunities for junior system administrator jobs results from the prominent role of computers and technologies in the economy and government. In the financial and healthcare industries, junior system administrators help maintain the integrity and security of records. Entities in these sectors must comply with regulations regarding the storage, maintenance and safekeeping of electronic records. Various departments in hospitals, banks, government agencies, pharmacies and universities must be able to access information and applications from other departments.
Small and medium-sized businesses and offices lack their own information technology divisions and departments. For these entities, cloud-based computing and data storage provide solutions for conducting transactions and transmitting files. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 31 percent jump in employment of network administrators in computer systems design and similar services to accommodate the demand for cloud technologies.
Employers in national security, education, finance and health rank among the many who will seek qualified JR. system administrators to help preserve records, track and document events and communicate with customers and other stakeholders. Even consumer-based and smaller entities incorporate computers and networks into their daily operations and will call upon JR. system administrators.
With the ever expanding use of computers and networks, applicants for JR. system administrator jobs will need to demonstrate specialized skills and knowledge often tailored to particular sectors or fields of work.