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Computer Network Architects
SOC Code: 15-1143.00

Design and implement computer and information networks, such as local area networks (LAN), wide area networks (WAN), intranets, extranets, and other data communications networks. Perform network modeling, analysis, and planning. May also design network and computer security measures. May research and recommend network and data communications hardware and software.

Sample of reported job titles: Design Engineer, Network Analyst, Network and Security Engineer, Network Consultant, Network Systems Consultant, Networking Systems and Distributed Systems Engineer, Solutions Architect, Telecommunications Analyst


  • Develop or recommend network security measures, such as firewalls, network security audits, or automated security probes.
  • Develop disaster recovery plans.
  • Monitor and analyze network performance and reports on data input or output to detect problems, identify inefficient use of computer resources, or perform capacity planning.
  • Coordinate network or design activities with designers of associated networks.
  • Develop conceptual, logical, or physical network designs.
  • Develop and implement solutions for network problems.
  • Determine specific network hardware or software requirements, such as platforms, interfaces, bandwidths, or routine schemas.
  • Communicate with system users to ensure accounts are set up properly or to diagnose and solve operational problems.
  • Visit vendors, attend conferences or training sessions, or study technical journals to keep up with changes in technology.
  • Evaluate network designs to determine whether customer requirements are met efficiently and effectively.
  • Participate in network technology upgrade or expansion projects, including installation of hardware and software and integration testing.
  • Adjust network sizes to meet volume or capacity demands.
  • Prepare detailed network specifications, including diagrams, charts, equipment configurations, or recommended technologies.
  • Develop network-related documentation.
  • Estimate time and materials needed to complete projects.
  • Supervise engineers or other staff in the design or implementation of network solutions.
  • Coordinate network operations, maintenance, repairs, or upgrades.
  • Develop procedures to track, project, or report network availability, reliability, capacity, or utilization.
  • Research and test new or modified hardware or software products to determine performance and interoperability.
  • Communicate with customers, sales staff, or marketing staff to determine customer needs.
  • Prepare design presentations and proposals for staff or customers.
  • Design, build, or operate equipment configuration prototypes, including network hardware, software, servers, or server operation systems.
  • Prepare or monitor project schedules, budgets, or cost control systems.
  • Develop plans or budgets for network equipment replacement.
  • Coordinate installation of new equipment.
  • Explain design specifications to integration or test engineers.
  • Develop or maintain project reporting systems.
  • Use network computer-aided design (CAD) software packages to optimize network designs.
  • Maintain or coordinate the maintenance of network peripherals, such as printers.
  • Develop and write procedures for installation, use, or troubleshooting of communications hardware or software.
  • Communicate with vendors to gather information about products, alert them to future needs, resolve problems, or address system maintenance issues.
  • Maintain networks by performing activities such as file addition, deletion, or backup.

Technology Skills

  • Access software - Access management software; Citrix ; Remote access software
  • Administration software - Cisco Systems CiscoWorks; Netreo OmniCenter; Riverbed Technology; SolarWinds (see all 14 examples)
  • Analytical or scientific software - Discrete event simulation software; Minitab ; Root cause analysis software
  • Application server software - Citrix XenApp; Docker ; GitHub ; Oracle WebLogic Server (see all 8 examples)
  • Authentication server software - Microsoft Forefront Identify Manager
  • Backup or archival software - Computer Associates ArcServ Backup; System and data disaster recovery software; Veritas NetBackup
  • Bridge software - Network bridge software
  • Business intelligence and data analysis software - IBM Cognos Impromptu ; MicroStrategy ; Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition ; Tableau
  • Communications server software - Email management software; IBM Domino
  • Computer aided design CAD software - Autodesk AutoCAD ; Autodesk Revit ; Dassault Systemes CATIA
  • Computer based training software
  • Configuration management software - Chef ; Perforce Helix software ; Puppet ; VMWare (see all 9 examples)
  • Content workflow software - Atlassian JIRA
  • Data base management system software - Apache Hive ; MongoDB ; MySQL ; Teradata Database (see all 12 examples)
  • Data base reporting software - Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services ; Network reporting software
  • Data base user interface and query software - AWS Redshift ; Microsoft SQL Server ; Structured query language SQL ; Transact-SQL (see all 5 examples)
  • Desktop communications software - BroadSoft BroadWorks
  • Development environment software - Apache Maven ; Integrated development environment IDE software ; National Instruments LabVIEW ; Systems and applications migration software (see all 18 examples)
  • Electronic mail software - IBM Notes ; Microsoft Exchange Server
  • Enterprise application integration software - Atlassian Bamboo ; Extensible markup language XML ; IBM InfoSphere DataStage ; IBM WebSphere (see all 5 examples)
  • Enterprise resource planning ERP software - Microsoft Dynamics ; Oracle Fusion Applications ; SAP
  • Enterprise system management software - IBM Power Systems software ; Splunk Enterprise
  • Expert system software - Ansible software
  • File versioning software - Apache Subversion SVN ; Git
  • Financial analysis software - Oracle E-Business Suite Financials
  • Graphics or photo imaging software - Adobe Systems Adobe Fireworks; Microsoft Visio ; Trimble SketchUp Pro
  • Helpdesk or call center software - Help desk software; Ticket information tracking software
  • Human resources software - Human resource management software HRMS
  • Industrial control software - Supervisory control and data acquisition SCADA software
  • Internet browser software - Web browser software
  • Internet directory services software - Domain name system DNS; Microsoft Active Directory
  • Internet protocol IP multimedia subsystem software - Multiprotocol Label Switching MPLS; Open Shortest Path First OSPF; Session Initiation Protocol SIP; Voice over internet protocol VoiP system software
  • LAN software - Local area network LAN software
  • Metadata management software - CA Erwin Data Modeler
  • Network monitoring software - Ipswitch WhatsUp Gold; Nagios ; Packet analysis software; Wireshark (see all 22 examples)
  • Network operating system enhancement software - Compuware dynaTrace; Network, server and operating system optimization software; Silver Peak; Wide area network WAN optimization software (see all 7 examples)
  • Network security and virtual private network VPN equipment software - Content filter software; Firewall software; Network intrusion detection software
  • Network security or virtual private network VPN management software - Intrusion prevention system IPS; Microsoft Forefront Threat Management Gateway; Virtual private networking VPN software ; Websense Data Loss Prevention (see all 11 examples)
  • Object or component oriented development software - C++ ; Microsoft ActiveX ; Python ; Scala (see all 10 examples)
  • Object oriented data base management software - Hibernate ORM ; PostgreSQL
  • Office suite software - Microsoft Office
  • Operating system software - Job control language JCL ; Linux ; Microsoft Windows ; Shell script (see all 17 examples)
  • Optical network management software
  • Pattern design software - Diagramming software
  • Portal server software - Apache HTTP Server
  • Presentation software - Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Program testing software - Hewlett Packard LoadRunner ; JUnit ; Segue SilkPerformer; Selenium (see all 5 examples)
  • Project management software - Confluence ; Microsoft Project ; Microsoft SharePoint
  • Requirements analysis and system architecture software - Capacity planning software; Network architecture design software; Requirements management software; Unified modeling language UML
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel
  • Storage networking software - Network storage software; Storage area network SAN software; Storage management software
  • Switch or router software - Border Gateway Protocol BGP; Cisco Systems Cisco Web Cache Communication Protocol WCCP; Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links TRILL; Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol VRRP (see all 8 examples)
  • Time accounting software - Time reporting software
  • Transaction security and virus protection software - CA eTrust; McAfee ; Penetration testing software; Symantec (see all 9 examples)
  • Transaction server software - Customer information control system CICS
  • Video conferencing software - Videoconferencing software
  • Video creation and editing software - Adobe Systems Adobe AfterEffects
  • WAN switching software and firmware - Wide area network WAN software
  • Web platform development software - Apache Tomcat ; Enterprise JavaBeans ; Google AngularJS ; Microsoft ASP.NET Core MVC (see all 23 examples)
  • Word processing software - Microsoft Word

Tools Used

  • Access servers - Lightweight directory access protocol LDAP servers; Remote access servers
  • Broadband aggregators - Broadband aggregation equipment
  • Computer servers - Domain name servers DNS; File servers; Mail transport servers; Network-attached storage NAS equipment (see all 6 examples)
  • Desktop computers
  • Digital telephones - Voice over internet protocol VoIP systems
  • Digital testers - Bit error rate testers BERT
  • Firewall network security equipment - Firewall equipment
  • Frequency analyzers - Spectrum analyzers
  • Hard disk arrays - Redundant array of independent disks RAID systems
  • High end computer servers - Workstations
  • Integrated services digital network ISDN testers - Integrated services digital network ISDN analyzers
  • Interferometers - Optical spectrum analyzers
  • Mainframe computers
  • Multimeters - Network multimeters
  • Network analyzers - Asynchronous transfer mode ATM analyzers; Local area network LAN analyzers; Network connectivity testers; Wide area network WAN analyzers (see all 9 examples)
  • Network cable management panel assembly - Network cabling systems
  • Network channel or data service units - Channel banks; Network channel service units CSU or data service units DSU
  • Network management or monitoring device - Packet analysis equipment
  • Network routers - Computer network routers
  • Network service concentrators or hubs - Intelligent hubs
  • Network switches - Computer network switches; Local area network LAN switches; Voice switches; Wide area network WAN switches
  • Network traffic controller - Wireless network controllers
  • Notebook computers - Laptop computers
  • Personal computers
  • Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers - Personal digital assistants PDA
  • Power meters - Fiber optic power meters
  • Protocol analyzers
  • Radio frequency data communication equipment - Radio frequency RF antennas
  • Reflectometers - Time domain reflectometers
  • Server load balancer - Load balancers; Network server load balancers
  • Storage area network SAN switch - Storage area network SAN switches
  • Tablet computers
  • Videoconferencing systems - Videoconferencing equipment
  • Voice data video cable tester - Communication cable testers
  • WLAN wireless access network equipment and components - Wireless access points WAP; Wireless local area network WLAN controllers


  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Telecommunications - Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.


  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Systems Evaluation - Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Programming - Writing computer programs for various purposes.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Persuasion - Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Technology Design - Generating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Negotiation - Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.


  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
  • Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
  • Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
  • Originality - The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
  • Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.


  • Interest code: ICE
    • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
    • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
    • Enterprising - Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
    • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Work Context

  • Electronic Mail - 100% responded “Every day.”
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled - 73% responded “Every day.”
  • Telephone - 50% responded “Every day.”
  • Face-to-Face Discussions - 50% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Sitting - 55% responded “More than half the time.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team - 45% responded “Very important.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work - 45% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - 45% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - 55% responded “Very important.”
  • Duration of Typical Work Week - 50% responded “More than 40 hours.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results - 45% responded “Important results.”
  • Contact With Others - 48% responded “Contact with others most of the time.”
  • Level of Competition - 50% responded “Highly competitive.”
  • Coordinate or Lead Others - 50% responded “Important.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making - 27% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Time Pressure - 36% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results - 50% responded “Moderate responsibility.”
  • Consequence of Error - 36% responded “Very serious.”


Percentage of RespondentsEducation Level Required
36%Master's degree
32%Bachelor's degree
14%Post-baccalaureate certificate

Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Innovation - Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Leadership - Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.

Work Values

  • Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
  • Working Conditions - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
  • Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $50.31 hourly, $104,650 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 163,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Average (5% to 9%)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 11,700

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