An IT administrator needs:
- good communication skills
- a logical and analytical approach to problem solving
- to keep up-to-date with rapid technological advances
- an interest in computers and an understanding of how they work
- patience and a methodical approach to their work.
IT administrators often work in offices. Many IT administrators are able to access the systems they administer, remotely - meaning they do not have to be alongside a system and may even be able to work from home. Computer systems are used by organisations operating in all industries throughout Western Australia. The majority of these workers are based in the Perth metropolitan region. However, there are still employment opportunities throughout the state. Hours of work can vary significantly, depending on the employer, however evening and weekend work is common, so that major system upgrades can take place without disrupting normal business operations.
On average, information technology administrators can expect to earn between $1 346 and $2 115 per week ($70 000 and $110 000 per year), depending on the organisation they work for, and their level of experience. As an information technology administrator develops their skills, their earning potential will generally increase.
IT administrators work with a variety of computer hardware and software. They need to be familiar with the various programs commonly used on the computer systems they look after. They also need to use Internet security software, such as firewalls, and maintain the system security by conducting regular scans using a number of anti-virus programs. In addition to personal computers, IT administrators will also work with an organisation’s server, printers and any other equipment connected to the IT system. They may also use external hard drives to back up data, minimising data loss in cases of system failure.
To become an information technology administrator you usually have to complete a qualification in information technology networking or computer systems technology.
The Certificate IV in Information Technology (Networking) and Certificate IV in Computer Systems Technology are offered at TAFE Colleges and other registered training organisations throughout Western Australia (WA).
You can also become an IT administrator by studying a degree in information technology or computer science, or a degree in commerce with a major in business information systems.
Most universities in WA offer relevant courses. Contact the universities you are interested in for more information.
Apprenticeships and traineeships
As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer. You spend most of your time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider of your choice. They will assess your skills and when you are competent in all areas, you will be awarded a nationally recognised qualification.
If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. You generally start your school based apprenticeship by attending school three days a week, spending one day at a registered training organisation and one day at work. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you get a full-time apprenticeship you can apply to leave school before reaching the school leaving age.
If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.
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If you think you already have some of the skills or competencies, obtained either through non-formal or informal learning, you may be able to gain credit through recognition of prior learning.