How to properly prepare for a networking career


As someone with a keen interest in technology, you know you want a job in this rapidly growing industry. After considering your many options, you’ve decided to pursue computer networking as a career.

If you’re not already familiar, computer networking involves setting up, developing and maintaining computer networks, including both hardware and software. This type of work can be quite meaningful to undertake. Since the entire world and, in particular, today’s workplaces are dependent on computers and data being shared across networks, it’s crucial that it’s reliable, well-maintained and efficient. You may also like the variety this type of job will entail, as well as how you’ll have to think on your feet and troubleshoot situations when issues arise.

To help reach your goal of becoming a computer networking professional, consider the following tips:

Earn a Certificate or Degree in Networking

The first step toward reaching your goal of working in computer networking is to earn a certificate or degree. This will allow you to learn and develop the skills and networking essentials you’ll need to pursue a job. Of course, you could look into earning a bachelor’s degree, or you could earn an online computer networking certificate in a shorter amount of time and typically with lower tuition costs. 

An additional benefit of taking computer networking courses online is that you can pursue the higher education you need while still maintaining your already busy schedule. Online courses tend to be more flexible, and you can learn about local area networks, wide area networks and the Internet on a laptop at home, instead of having to drive to a college campus after a long day at work.

Develop Your Communication Skills

When you work in computer networking, you’re typically on the proverbial front lines speaking with business owners and their employees. Beyond that, you’ll also need to find ways to explain the often technical work you’re doing to people who may not have the same background and expertise. To do this part of your job as effectively as possible, you may want to sign up for a public speaking class that will help to take you out of your comfort zone but will also prepare you for the constant communication you’ll do on the job. For instance, Toastmasters is an organization where you can practice public speaking, boost your communication skills, and also learn about leadership.

Learn as Much as You Can About the Career

Computer networking is a catch-all term for a number of positions in tech, including network technician, network analyst and network specialist. Before you start applying for jobs, take some time to learn about each one to determine which position or positions you’d like to pursue. You’ll also want to make an honest assessment of your interest in domains like wireless, telecom and the cloud, and decide which pique your interest the most. In addition to what you’re learning in your certificate program, read as much as possible about the specific position you want. This way, as jobs become available, you can not only appear knowledgeable during the interview but will also apply for the best position for you.

You Deserve a Great Career and Future

Whether you’re looking to change roles or are just starting your career, you deserve to have one that makes you happy and fulfilled. Indeed, now might be an opportune time to get started on the path toward achieving your goals. By earning a certificate or degree, working on your communication skills, and learning all you can about this field, you’ll be on the path toward your chosen career.