Cisco Engineer Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a Cisco engineer. You can use our job description template in this article to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a Cisco engineer.
Who is a Cisco Engineer?
A Cisco Engineer is a network administrator who designs and deploys computer networks built with Cisco products. They work for organizations and businesses that want to build large computer networks. These engineers’ primary responsibilities include establishing networks and expanding network support, as well as detecting and resolving persistent issues.
Cisco Engineer Job Description
Below are the Cisco engineer job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
Cisco engineers are responsible for the following tasks.
- Design, implement, and troubleshoot network infrastructures such as routers, switches, firewalls, VoIP phones, and load balancers.
- Analyze network performance problems and recommend solutions, such as adding more servers or upgrading software.
- Install new network hardware and components such as routers and switches.
- Maintain data security by keeping an eye on security logs for unauthorized access attempts.
- Replace failed hardware components as part of routine network maintenance.
- Assist customers with the use of technology products and services.
- Plan new network construction projects and perform network design projects.
- Maintain existing network infrastructure by troubleshooting issues and identifying equipment or software component repairs or replacements.
- Create and put in place disaster recovery plans to ensure business continuity in the event of a natural disaster or another emergency.
A Cisco engineer must possess the following qualifications:
- Education: A bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, engineering, or a related field is typically required for Cisco engineers. Some employers will consider candidates with a two-year associate’s degree, but the majority will prefer candidates with a four-year degree.
- Experience and training: The majority of Cisco engineers’ training will take place while they are studying. While earning a bachelor’s or master’s degree, students will learn the fundamentals of networking and computer systems. While pursuing their bachelor’s or master’s degrees, they will also receive on-the-job training.
- Licenses and certifications: Cisco engineers are frequently required to have specific certifications to demonstrate their knowledge in a specific area.
To be successful on the job, Cisco engineers must possess the following abilities.
- Technical abilities: As a Cisco engineer, your technical skills are the foundation of your job. You must be able to read and interpret technical diagrams, troubleshoot complex computer systems, and write technical documentation. Technical abilities are also required for learning new skills and progressing in your career.
- Written communication skills: Cisco engineers frequently write down system analyses, testing, processes, and other technical operations. As a result, many of these professionals rely on written communication to be effective in their jobs. A Cisco engineer, for example, might explain the technical processes of managing and troubleshooting a wide area network for a large corporation. This enables the IT department to have a manual of operations initiated by the engineer in the system. Many employers value the ability to communicate technical and performance-based tasks in writing so that everyone is up to date on current operations.
- Problem-solving abilities: Cisco engineers must be able to solve extremely complex mathematical and technical problems. For example, to optimize performance, this professional must be able to troubleshoot issues within an organization’s networks. Problem-solving also includes the ability to apply new and innovative solutions to work through workplace challenges, such as managing IT security networks or working as part of a team to complete a company-wide project.
- Analytical abilities: Analytical abilities, such as the ability to break down complex problems and evaluate technical processes, are essential in the career of a Cisco engineer. This professional must also be able to perform the necessary operations for specific tasks. Brainstorming and creative thinking techniques are also essential for developing initiatives or moving projects forward in this position.
- Excellent time management abilities: Another important skill for a cisco engineer to have is time management. You can recognize when to contribute and when to delegate tasks to other team members so that you have enough time to complete your expected duties. You can also practice good time management by using a project management methodology that works for you, setting milestone dates, and double-checking your schedule before taking on an unexpected task.
- Teamwork abilities: Cisco engineers collaborate with many professionals from various departments of a company. It is advantageous for them to be able to collaborate with team members, supervisors, and other employees. Employers typically seek Cisco engineers who can collaborate with, and even lead, teams of software developers, systems analysts, and other IT professionals to achieve company objectives.
- Flexibility: Engineers must be adaptable because the technology industry is constantly changing. This can include being able to learn new software or hardware, as well as changing the way you collaborate with others. Adaptability can help you stay relevant in your field and advance in your career.
- Excellent organizational abilities: The ability to keep track of various information and resources is referred to as an organization. As a Cisco engineer, you may be required to recall information about various projects or clients, as well as technical information about your job. Strong organizational skills can assist you in staying on top of your work and completing all necessary tasks.
- Understanding of cloud computing: Cloud computing is a technology that enables businesses to store and access information from remote servers. This can help to reduce the need for expensive physical storage space. It also enables businesses to share resources with other organizations, potentially increasing productivity and efficiency. Cloud computing necessitates that Cisco engineers understand cloud-based software and how it operates.
- Capability to Apply the OSI Model: The OSI model is a seven-layer system that describes how data travels across the internet. This model is important for Cisco engineers to understand because it allows them to troubleshoot issues more efficiently and accurately. The ability to determine which layer an issue originates from can aid engineers in finding solutions more quickly.
- Knowledge of VPNs: Virtual private networks, or VPNs, are software programs that enable remote users to connect to a network as if they were physically present. This is beneficial to Cisco engineers because it allows them to connect to and troubleshoot computer systems remotely. It also aids in the maintenance of security protocols by allowing them to access sensitive data from locations other than the company’s physical location.
- Routing expertise: The process of directing data through a network is known as routing. Cisco engineers must understand how routing works to troubleshoot problems and make appropriate changes to their designs. Routing knowledge also assists them in designing networks efficiently, allowing them to minimize costs while maximizing performance.
- TCP/IP knowledge: TCP/IP is a set of protocols that enables computers to communicate with one another via the internet. TCP/IP knowledge is essential for Cisco engineers because it allows them to understand how networks work and troubleshoot problems as they arise.
TCP/IP is also used by Cisco engineers to configure routers, switches, and firewalls. This ability can help you find work as a Cisco engineer and advance your career.
- Understanding of network security: Cisco engineers must be well-versed in network security protocols and procedures. This is because they frequently design, implement, and maintain security measures for their employer’s computer systems. They also use this skill when performing penetration testing, which entails using hacking techniques to identify vulnerabilities in a company’s system.
- Ability to Perform Switching: The ability to switch from one technology or system to another is referred to as switching. This may be necessary if, for example, a company upgrades its network and you need to switch your equipment to continue providing support. Switching also allows you to learn new technologies that may aid in your career advancement.
- Keen Attention to Detail: To build and maintain a network that meets the needs of their clients, Cisco engineers must be detail-oriented. They frequently work with complex technology, so they must understand how each component interacts with the others. This ensures that they can create an efficient system that provides the appropriate resources for their client’s business or organization.
- Knowledge of ITIL: ITIL is a set of IT service management standards that can assist Cisco engineers in developing their understanding of how to manage and improve the performance of an organization’s IT infrastructure. There are several types of certifications available, including one for the foundation level and two levels of advanced certification. These credentials demonstrate to employers that you can design and implement effective IT systems.
- Understanding of VoIP: Voice-over-internet protocol, or VoIP, is a technology that allows you to make phone calls over the internet. This is advantageous for Cisco engineers because it allows them to communicate with others using their computer’s microphone and speakers rather than specialized hardware such as a telephone. It also implies that your employer may not be required to pay for separate phone lines in the office.
- Knowledge of wireless networking: A Cisco engineer must be well-versed in wireless networking protocols and standards. This is because they frequently design, implement, and maintain the physical components of a wireless network, such as antennas, routers, and other hardware. They must also comprehend how these devices communicate with one another and what factors can influence their performance.
How to Become a Cisco Engineer
- Complete all educational requirements: A bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as systems engineering or computer science, is recommended before pursuing a career in cisco engineering. Some schools offer a degree program in Cisco engineering, and you may be able to earn additional certifications as part of the program. A bachelor’s degree is preferred, but an associate degree is acceptable.
- Obtain vendor-independent certifications: To become a Cisco engineer, you can obtain a variety of certifications. One method is to obtain vendor-neutral certification. These certifications provide basic knowledge of the IT field and do not provide in-depth instruction on a specific company’s devices. To receive your credentials, you must pass one or more exams for each certification. This process can take anywhere from 6 to 18 months to complete. The following are some useful certifications for a Cisco engineer:
- CompTIA A+ certification: This is an entry-level certification that allows candidates to gain basic IT knowledge that can be expanded upon by obtaining more advanced certifications. After earning the CompTIA A+ certification, you can work toward the CompTIA Network + certification, which is a little more advanced.
- CompTIA Network+ certification: This certification is a step up from the CompTIA A+, and it is recommended that you work toward the latter before pursuing the Network+. However, it is important to note that the CompTIA A+ certification is not required before attempting this more advanced option. The CompTIA Network+ option is intended to teach candidates about troubleshooting and device operation. There is only one exam in addition to the training materials.
- CompTIA Security+ certification: This certification focuses on network security and related topics. For those interested in a career in network security, this is a highly sought-after certification. You must first pass an exam to obtain this certification.
- Select the appropriate device path: Following your basic certifications, you can pursue additional credentials about a specific company and its unique devices. Begin by reviewing a company’s product lines to determine which ones you would be most comfortable working with. Cisco products, for example, include routers, switches, security and storage software, and wireless phones, to name a few. Microsoft products include Windows, Office (365, Word, Outlook, Excel, and PowerPoint), Business (Skype, Azure, and Dynamics), and devices such as the Microsoft mouse, keyboard, computer models, and mobile devices.
- Obtain manufacturer-specific certification: After completing one or more vendor-neutral certifications and determining which track you want to pursue, you can determine which vendor-specific certification is the best fit. You will be required to complete additional training tailored to your company and its devices. Some organizations may require you to have the following Cisco engineer certifications:
- Cisco (beginners): This certification will give the recipient the ability to move between positions and the potential to earn a high salary. Because there are no prerequisites for this course, it provides you with fundamental IT knowledge. To obtain this certification, you must pass two exams. It should be noted that the CCIE certification is required for the CCNP.
- Cisco (mid-level): This Cisco certification is a step up from the CCIE. Those interested in this option must first obtain their CCIE credentials, but this more advanced option allows you to select from six additional tracks: security, enterprise, data center, collaboration, service provider, and DevNet professional. To obtain your certification, you must pass two required exams.
- SolarWinds. The SolarWinds certified professional certification is the only certification offered by the company, but it allows aspiring network professionals to choose between two different tracks in addition to a career within the company. The process to obtain this certification entails one written exam.
- Microsoft 365 Certified: Associate Security Administrator: This certification gives you comprehensive training on Microsoft 365 software. The program teaches participants how to identify potential threat risks and general network security practices. You must pass an exam to obtain this credential.
- Certified by Microsoft Associate Azure Administrator: This network management certification provides you with the knowledge and skills required to work with Azure software. You can use it to manage virtual networks, storage, and other program resources. You must pass an exam to obtain this network certification.
These are just a few examples of entry- and mid-level certifications available through a vendor-specific credential path. Because certifications must be renewed every few years, they enable you to obtain new certifications and find the best course to further your knowledge in the IT field.
- Start looking for work: After completing the necessary education requirements and certifications to advance your professional standing, you can start looking for and applying for cisco engineer jobs. Include all relevant certifications and credentials on your resume for potential employers to review.
Where to Work as a Cisco Engineer
Cisco engineers work in a variety of settings, such as offices, data centers, and customer sites. They could be employed by large corporations, government agencies, or small businesses. They typically work full-time, with some jobs requiring overtime or on-call work. Cisco engineers typically hold a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field and are required by Cisco to be certified. They must be able to troubleshoot complex problems and provide excellent customer service.
Cisco Engineer Salary Scale
In the United States, the average cisco engineer salary is $114,893 per year or $58.92 per hour. Entry-level salaries begin at $95,014 per year, with the most experienced workers earning up to $146,250 per year.
The average cisco engineer’s gross salary in the United Kingdom is £64,444 per year or £31.50 per hour.
In Canada, the average gross salary for a cisco engineer is $125,106, or $60 per hour.
In Australia, the average gross salary for a cisco engineer is $146,269, or $70 per hour.
In Germany, the average gross salary for a Cisco engineer is 88.615 € or 43 € per hour.
In Nigeria, a Cisco engineer earns around 276,000 NGN per month.