Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on CompTIA Network+

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Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our annual Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

CompTIA's redoubtable Network+ credential is the first taste of IT certification for many a certified computer networking professional.For aspiring computer networking professionals, earning the Network+ certification offered by tech industry association CompTIA is sort of like completing basic training after joining the Army. The point is for new recruits to learn everything they need to know to hit the ground running. (Broadly speaking. We won’t get into the psychological conditioning of military drills.)

Network+ (no. 60 on our most recent Salary Survey 75 list) teaches fundamental computer networking skills that can be applied across a variety of setups involving proprietary networking equipment. Here’s what the salary picture looks like for CompTIA Network+ holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $124,040
Median Annual Salary: $122,190
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 15.4 percent
Very Satisfied: 38.5 percent
Satisfied: 23.1 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 23 percent
Not At All Satisfied: [No responses]

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $48,000
Median Annual Salary: $37,500
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 6.2 percent
Very Satisfied: 6.2 percent
Satisfied: 37.5 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 31.3 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 18.8 percent

The largest single body of Network+ holders to participate in the survey is made up of U.S. residents (92.8 percent), but we also heard from credential holders in 13 other countries: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Italy, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Nigeria, South Africa, Sweden, Trinidad and Tobago, the United Kingdom, and Vietnam.

Most of the Network+ holders who responded to the survey are men, but we did hear from a notable contingent (10.3 percent of respondents) of female credential holders. We heard from credential holders of many different ages, but most are either between the ages of 35 and 44 (33 percent of respondents), between the ages of 45 and 54 (30.1 percent), or between the ages of 25 and 34 (18.8 percent). The rest are either between the ages of 19 and 24 (1.7 percent of those surveyed), between the ages of 55 and 64 (13.3 percent), or between the ages of 65 and 74 (3.1 percent).

More than 75 percent of the Network+ holders who participated in the survey have an educational background that includes time spent at a college or university. The highest level of education completed by most Network+ holders is either a bachelor’s degree (36 percent of those surveyed), master’s degree (19.8 percent), associate’s degree (18.8 percent), doctorate (1.4 percent), or professional degree (also 1.4 percent). The outliers are the 12.7 percent of respondents who exited the realm of formal education after completing some level of post-high school technical training, the 1.7 percent whose highest educational attainment is a high school diploma, the 7.9 percent who are currently in school, and the 0.3 percent who entered the workforce with no formal education.

A solid 93.3 percent of Network+ holders who responded to the survey are employed full-time. The rest either have part-time jobs (4.5 percent of respondents), are students (0.6 percent), are taking a sabbatical (0.3 percent), or are out of work altogether (1.3 percent). Among those who have full-time jobs, most either put in the standard 40 hours per week (40.8 percent) or are on the clock for between 41 and 50 hours per week (46.2 percent). The rest have a full-time work schedule of either more than 50 hours per week (8.2 percent of respondents), between 31 and 39 hours per week (3.4 percent), between 20 and 30 hours per week (0.7 percent), or fewer than 20 hours per week (0.7 percent).

In the pre-COVID-19 world, roughly 85 percent of Network+ holders were spending the lion’s share of those hours in a traditional workplace setting, working from home either fewer than 10 hours per week (71.2 percent of respondents) or between 10 and 20 hours per week (13.9 percent). The rest were notably more familiar with what has become the norm for many, working from home either between 21 and 30 hours per week (3.1 percent), between 31 and 39 hours per week (1.7 percent), 40 hours per week (6.6 percent), or more than 40 hours per week (3.5 percent).

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of Network+ holders we heard from (30 percent of those surveyed) are employed at the senior specialist level. The rest, in descending order, are either specialists (25.4 percent or respondents), rank-and-file employees (19 percent), managers (14.7 percent), senior managers (6 percent), directors (3.2 percent), and executives (1.7 percent).

A bit more than half (51.6 percent) of Network+ holders who participated in the survey are IT veterans, having worked in a role that directly utilizes one or more of their certified skills for more than a decade. The rest have been plying their certified skills for either between zero years (1 to 11 months) and 2 years (15.6 percent of respondents), between 3 and 5 years (18.7 percent, between 6 and 8 years (8.1 percent), or between 9 and 10 years (6 percent).

Finally, here’s the view of CompTIA Network+ holders on key questions from the survey about how certification impacts job performance:

At my current job I use skills learned or enhanced through certification: 
Several times a day: 51.8 percent
Several times a week: 22.5 percent
Several times a month: 9 percent
Occasionally: 12.4 percent
Rarely: 4.3 percent

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 28.5 percent
Agree: 37.2 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 25.4 percent
Disagree: 6.1 percent
Strongly Disagree: 2.9 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree:31.1 percent
Agree: 40 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 19.9 percent
Disagree: 6.1 percent
Strongly Disagree: 2.9 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 27.1 percent
Agree: 37.2 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 25.6 percent
Disagree: 6.6 percent
Strongly Disagree: 3.5 percent

PAST NETWORK+ DEEP FOCUS FEATURES

2018

2017

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CertMag Staff

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Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

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