How to Get a Job as a Network Engineer | 6 Tips

Written by Coursera Staff • Updated on

Network engineers design, administer, and optimise computer networks for businesses. Learn how you can get the education you need to get started as a network engineer.

[Featured image] A network engineer sits in front of their computer workstation smiling at the camera.

Network engineers play a key role in helping individuals and organisations maintain and improve their communication systems. Because of their important expertise, the demand for network engineers is high in many industries. As digitalisation continues to grow in India with the Digital India programme, many forward-thinking, technologically-savvy individuals are turning to this exciting career for its diverse responsibilities and expanding job prospects.

Let’s take a closer look at what this high-paying career involves and how you can get started. 

What is a network engineer?

Computer network architects and engineers design and build data communication networks and monitor network systems. These could range in size from a connection between a couple of offices to an intricate cloud infrastructure serving a multinational company. 

Network engineers are often also responsible for protecting these networks from all sorts of external threats—from phishing schemes to ransomware to denial-of-service attacks—with a process known as network security. 

At smaller companies, you may be responsible for both architecture and security. Working in larger companies often means specialising in one area of network engineering, such as architecture, security, or administration.

Network engineer salary

According to Glassdoor, network engineers in India can expect an average annual salary of ₹5,00,000 [1]. However, individual salaries will depend on the company and industry you work for, where you’re located, and your job responsibilities. For example, senior network engineers can expect to take home ₹9,00,000 per year, whilst a network engineer IV brings in around ₹24L annually.

Tips for getting a network engineering job

If you enjoy working with computers and solving problems, then a career in network engineering could be a good fit. Here are some tips for starting your career in the field.  

1. Consider obtaining a degree. 

Most network engineering jobs require at least an undergraduate degree in a related field, such as computer science, information systems, or engineering. For certain positions, additional training may be required to enter into the role.

If you don’t have a degree in one of these fields, consider taking courses that concentrate in network engineering, computer science, electronic engineering, network security, or software engineering. Foundational courses in maths, electrical engineering, and physics will also help you build the quantitative skills needed to perform tasks on the job. 

2. Start with an entry-level role. 

Network engineers often have several years of experience working with IT systems. To gain relevant experience and build your technical skills, consider starting with an entry-level role in IT support, network cable installation, or digital and technical solutions. In these roles, you will likely help senior network engineers and may be able to learn valuable skills from their experiences and techniques. 

3. Learn relevant skills. 

Network engineers typically require a wide range of skills to be able to solve various technical problems. Whilst many of the skills can be built through experience, taking a relevant course or certification is a great way to gain structured knowledge and ensure you have a deep understanding of the field. The following are some important concepts in network security that you should know:

  • Information architecture

  • Malware protection

  • Firewall installation

  • Data analysis

  • Computer infrastructure 

Learning about these concepts can help you gain structured knowledge, develop comprehensive solutions, and have a deeper understanding of the field. 

4. Get familiar with the cloud.  

As more and more companies turn to cloud computing to meet their business needs, they’ll need network engineers who can design, optimise, and manage networks in a cloud environment. The government of India is actively promoting the uptake of cloud computing and cloud technologies, making this a potentially valuable skill in years to come.

5. Learn the right programming languages.

It’s not always necessary that you know how to code to work as a network engineer. However, knowing certain programming languages can help you become a stronger candidate and perform your job more effectively. Different organisations have different preferences for programming languages, but popular ones to consider include Python, Perl, Bash, and Golang.

6. Get certified. 

Some companies require that their network engineers and architects are certified in the products the company uses. Check job descriptions for the types of positions you’d like to apply for to get an idea of what’s required. Vendor-neutral certifications can validate your skills to potential employers.

Some popular options to consider include CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+, and Cisco Certified Network Association.

Get started with Coursera

The demand for network engineers is growing at a faster-than-average rate. Get job-ready in less than six months for this in-demand career by completing a Google IT Support Professional Certificate on Coursera. Learn in-demand skills such as how to perform common IT support tasks, provide comprehensive customer support, and use popular systems such as Linux and Binary Code. With this certification, you can look for your first IT position or build on these skills to move into more advanced IT and network support positions.

Article sources

  1. Glassdoor. “Network Engineer Salaries in India,,5_IN115_KO6,22.htm?clickSource=searchBtn.” Accessed June 20, 2023. 

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