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Senior Network Engineer Career


What Is a Senior Network Engineer?


A senior network engineer is an IT professional who works with computer systems and networks to ensure that all network operations run smoothly. This includes designing, analyzing, evaluating, configuring, troubleshooting, and implementing network solutions. Senior network engineers have extensive knowledge of coding languages, protocols, hardware components, and IP-based networking technologies. They also actively stay up to date on security measures to protect the networks they manage. In addition to technical skills, successful senior network engineers demonstrate strong problem-solving strategies, excellent communication skills, and a willingness to collaborate with and lead junior engineers.


What Does a Senior Network Engineer Do?

A senior network engineer's day-to-day duties include the following:

  • Building and maintaining the network infrastructure.
  • Collaborating with network architects to design and implement functional company networks.
  • Installing and configuring networking hardware. 
  • Creating and implementing network security measures. 
  • Conducting regular network performance tests. 
  • Delegating networking maintenance tasks.
  • Dealing with escalated network support issues. 
  • Drawing up network status reports.
  • Working on troubleshooting any technical problems that arise.
  • Ensuring that their software and hardware are always up to date.
  • Maintaining security measures to defend from outside threats or malicious attacks.
  • Managing and mentoring junior network engineering staff.
  • Abiding by industry standards and regulations.


How Do I Become a Senior Network Engineer?

Becoming a senior network engineer is both an exciting and rewarding opportunity. To start, a computer science or network engineering bachelor’s degree will give you a solid foundation regarding networks and their infrastructure. Upon graduation, entry-level roles are ideal for gaining experience in the basics of network engineering. Once these skills have been established, gradually moving into more complex positions will help you reach the status of senior network engineer. Progression typically follows this order: junior network engineer to senior network engineer to team lead or manager. While experience is important in climbing the ranks, certification may help shorten the timeline. Having certifications related to network engineering, such as Cisco CCNA, Cisco CCNP, or CompTIA Network+, provide expertise in overseeing an entire department or division's networking operations. The path to becoming a senior network engineer takes time and dedication. Still, this professional milestone is achievable with the proper knowledge and attitude.

Best Degrees for a Senior Network Engineer

Computer Science – B.S.

Problem solvers and math lovers needed! Your task:...

Problem solvers and math lovers needed! Your task:

Lay the groundwork for the computing breakthroughs that will enable tomorrow's technologies. 

  • Time: 71% of graduates in similar programs finish within 27 months.
  • Tuition: $3,985 per 6-month term.
  • Courses: 38 total courses in this program.

You'll have the opportunity to earn these certifications:

  • Linux Essentials
  • Axelos ITIL Foundation

Utilize your previous college courses or IT experience to help you complete your degree faster.

Careers that this program can help prepare you for include:

  • Computer systems analyst
  • Computer programmer
  • Artificial intelligence specialist
  • Software engineer
  • Machine learning engineer

Network Engineering and Security – B.S.

Launch your career in designing, securing, and optimizing complex networks....

Launch your career in designing, securing, and optimizing complex networks.

  • Time: 70% of graduates finish similar programs within 39 months.
  • Tuition: $3,735 per 6-month term.
  • Courses: 34 or 37 courses in this program depending on focus area
  • Two focus areas: Students can choose between a Cisco or general program, allowing them to learn and gain experience in their chosen specialty.


  • CompTIA A+
  • CompTIA Project+
  • CompTIA Cloud+
  • ITIL®*^ Foundation Certification
  • LPI Linux Foundations

The Cisco program also includes: 

  • Cisco CCNA
  • Cisco DevNet
  • Cisco CyberOps

The general program  also includes: 

  • CompTIA Security+
  • CompTIA Network+
  • CompTIA IT Operations Specialist (Stacked)
  • CompTIA Secure Infrastructure Specialist (Stacked)
  • CompTIA Cloud Admin Professional (Stacked)
  • CompTIA Secure Cloud Professional (Stacked)

This program will help you develop strong skills in network design, network operations, and security management.

How Much Does a Senior Network Engineer Make?


Network engineers typically earn an annual salary of $126,900, with the bottom 10% of the field making $73,490 and the top 10% making $185,170 or more, depending on the region and size of the company they work for. Most employers offer health benefits, paid holidays and vacation days, flexible hours, and other additional perks in addition to their base salary.

What Is the Projected Job Growth?


Because the field is expected to grow by 4% between 2021 and 2031, the outlook for network engineers is excellent. With recent advances in technology, almost all industries need to have secure, reliable networks. Network engineers are responsible for the design, installation, maintenance, and security of these essential systems. This makes them an invaluable asset to any organization.


What Skills Does a Senior Network Engineer Need?

A senior network engineer requires a broad range of technical and communication skills, most notably:

  • Understanding of both local area networks (LANs) and wide area networks (WANs).
  • Advanced knowledge of network operating systems, including Cisco, JUNOS, and iOS.
  • Knowledge and understanding of scripting languages such as Verilog or GraphQL.
  • Knowledge and understanding of key networking hardware, including CPUs, wiring, and routers.
  • Knowledge of communication and routing protocols used within businesses.
  • Familiarity with network analysis tools, such as SolarWind.
  • Ability to identify, diagnose, and solve networking problems.
  • Proficiency with various coding languages. 
  • Strong leadership and team mentoring skills.
  • Problem-solving skills.
  • Communication skills.

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Interested in Becoming a Senior Network Engineer?

Learn more about degree programs that can prepare you for this meaningful career.