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Systems Administrator Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Systems Administrator, or SysAdmin sets up and maintains computer systems. Their responsibilities include installing and configuring hardware, software and network infrastructure of computer systems, diagnosing and troubleshooting issues and ensuring the security of IT infrastructure.

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Systems Administrator duties and responsibilities

Systems Administrators ensure that a company’s computer and networking systems perform efficiently and risk-free. Depending on the company, they work on the core IT infrastructure or specialise in networking and cloud computing functionality in data centres. Some of their duties and responsibilities include:

  • Deploying software, creating user groups and operating system policies across the entire IT network
  • Installing, configuring and maintaining software, hardware, network and application components of the IT system
  • Diagnosing, troubleshooting and resolving software, hardware and networking issues
  • Ensuring proper and secure storage, backup and retrieval of data
  • Replacing and upgrading outdated or defective components
  • Identifying and implementing new strategies for optimal computer system operations
  • Enforcing security best practices to prevent cyber attacks and security breaches
  • Documenting internal processes for achieving optimal performance of computer systems through Wiki
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What does a Systems Administrator do?

The primary duty of Systems Administrators is to manage, maintain and upgrade the software, hardware and network systems of an IT infrastructure. They make sure that all the components of the computing system are running efficiently. Systems Admins troubleshoot any issues with computer software and hardware. They also maintain internet connectivity, back up data and ensure that the system is not under any threat. They perform customer service functions by helping clients and employees and by resolving issues affecting the optimal performance of their computer and networking terminals.

Systems Administrator skills and qualifications

A Systems Administrator needs a strong background in computing, command-line syntax and server architecture. A successful Systems Administrator candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications needed to perform duties effectively, these include:

  • Proven experience in a Systems Administrator, Network Administrator or Desktop Support role
  • Knowledge of operating systems and networking platforms
  • Understanding of system security and data recovery
  • Knowledge of networking and databases
  • Troubleshooting and problem-solving skills
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Resourcefulness and ability to work under pressure

Systems Administrator experience requirements

Systems Administrator candidates require extensive experience in every aspect of the IT ecosystem. They must have working experience of the standard operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Linux or Unix. They should also be proficient in database management, security protocols, networking and hardware maintenance. While the role does not require advanced programming skills, the ideal Systems Administrator candidate should be capable of using scripts to automate repetitive functions. Systems Administrators also need to know the documentation process to create user manuals.

Systems Administrator education and training requirements

Systems Administrators can have a degree in computer science, business information systems, maths and operational research or information management systems. Employers also accept candidates who have completed an Information Systems Business Analyst higher apprenticeship. Candidates with certifications for Systems Administrators such as Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) and CompTIA Server+ can also be eligible even if they don’t have traditional educational qualifications.

System Administrator salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for Systems Administrator candidates in the UK is £34,976 per year. Actual pay may depend on the employer, the industry, location, experience, skills, certifications, academic qualifications and the job.

Job description samples for similar positions

Here are job description samples for similar positions if you are not looking to recruit System Administrators:

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System Administrator job description FAQs

What qualities make a good System Administrator?

Successful Systems Administrators must be patient and thorough as most of the duties are repetitive. The candidate must be tolerant and patient, as some people may not be able to follow instructions and may need the constant attention of the Systems Administrator. The role requires excellent interpersonal skills as the Systems Administrator works directly with end-users daily. The ideal candidate must be able to provide clear instructions with a polite tone and professional approach at all times. As most of the work requires searching for answers to critical problems, the candidate should have a comprehensive knowledge of documentation. Systems Administrators also be need to be good team players, helping end users, so that the computing systems work effectively.

How can you make your Systems Administrator job description stand out?

To make your Systems Administrator job description stand out, include the specific title of the job. Describe your organisation and the duties and responsibilities of the role. Highlight the day-to-day activities and describe the company’s work culture, this way candidates can determine if they are a good fit for the company. It’s important to include information about the experiences, skills, qualifications and certifications required to perform the job effectively. You can also mention the salary and employment benefits to make the job description more attractive to candidates.

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