noc vs network engineer

jcamilo91jcamilo91 Posts: 17Member ■■□□□□□□□□
Hello Everyone,

I am currently in a position that I would not have imagined being in a year ago. I my CCENT back in April, and was able to secured a NOC Engineer role in June. The pay was not so good, so i decided to keep my full time position, and work the NOC part time, which my employers allowed.

I received my CCNA last month, and I have been applying to jobs since then. I have interviewed for a couple positions, and to my disbelief, I have gotten about 4 offers already, ranging from network technician, help desk/semi network admin, NOC, and even a network engineering role with an ISP.

I am split between the ISP network engineering role, and the NOC role (IT specialist/NOC engineer) , which is being offered by a very well established company, which i do not want to name. I am more interested in network engineering, but the role is a contractor role, and i would not get any benefits(paid vacation time, health/vision and dental insurance). The NOC position and the network engineering position offer similar pay, but i would be taking more money home from the NOC job due to the excellent benefits.

I always wanted to get into Network Engineering, and I feel like just sucking it up, and working for the ISP because it will be huge experience for me, and in 2-3 years my value as an employee and network engineer would skyrocket. However, the NOC position sounds good as well due to a bit of a higher pay and benefits.

What do you guys think I should do. Some advice would be appreciated.

Comments

  • Welly_59Welly_59 Posts: 431Member
    Don't read too much into job titles, you should have an explanation of what the employers expect from you for each role.

    NOC tends to be more of a 2nd line role - less hands on and more dealing with escalated tickets from service desk. If a device is broken then it tends to be the engineers who will actually replace it/design a solution
  • jcamilo91jcamilo91 Posts: 17Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    yes i understand. I currently work at a NOC part time. What I am wondering is if its worth going to the network engineering role knowing that I will be receiving no benefits, and slightly less pay for more experience. I am currently 25 years old.
  • Welly_59Welly_59 Posts: 431Member
    Do you think you'll have the opportunity to learn more from the engineering role? If so then go for it!
  • jcamilo91jcamilo91 Posts: 17Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I would learn alot from either role. I am still kind of entry level, and although I already work at a NOC, its only part time. I would like to eventually get into Network Engineering, and I did not think i would get this opportunity so early in my networking career. The only thing that makes me hesitate is the lack of benefits since i would be a contractor, and slightly less pay. I guess i can try to negotiate for one more dollar per hour. Has anyone gone through a similar experience to what i am going through now?
  • Welly_59Welly_59 Posts: 431Member
    More or less what I'm doing now. Currently employed as 2nd line network support. Mostly progression of tickets, some change work , and monitoring the network. Spot has come up on the 3rd line team which I've applied for.

    Will be less incident resolution, more change work, but exactly the same salary. I'm going to go for it even though there is no material gain. A year there will see me good to move on for more cash and responsibility
  • volfkhatvolfkhat Posts: 947Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    Welly_59 wrote: »
    Don't read too much into job titles, you should have an explanation of what the employers expect from you for each role.

    ^Bingo

    Since you are new to the field, i would go for the job with the best environment to learn from more knowledgeable people around you (on a daily basis).

    A Job Title means ZILCH if you dont have the Smarts to back it up.

    Also, a nice $$$ Salary doesnt mean much if you get canned in 90 days.
  • Danielh22185Danielh22185 Posts: 1,195Member
    The tipping point deciding factor here comes down to which job is going to allow you to take root into the technology and learn the most. Pay will come later as you become more experienced.
    Currently Studying: IE Stuff...kinda...for now...
    My ultimate career goal: To climb to the top of the computer network industry food chain.
    "Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else." - Vince Lombardi
  • mayhem87mayhem87 Posts: 73Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    If it is a true network engineer position are you in the mindset to take on complex problems as the last line of escalation? To me NOC gives you the opportunity to poke and prod without actually being the last line of defense. So you can attempt the hard tickets but at the same time have no shame in escalating and learning from a more experienced engineer. An actual network engineer to me should be the last line of defense and deal with things the NOC can't do. They will also be in charge of the overall network health from a design/capacity planning perspective. I would also say that an engineer will have more political duties as they will be more involved in project work.

    As other have said though titles can be really misleading and depending on the company you may not perform the duties that the title represents. I've seen network engineers that don't do anything and just rely on the vendor/VAR. Nothing more than a baby sitter. Also seen great NOC personnel that never have to escalate.
  • Kai123Kai123 Posts: 364Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    mayhem87 wrote: »
    Nothing more than a baby sitter. Also seen great NOC personnel that never have to escalate.

    Off-topic but I got in trouble in my NOC role last year for not creating escalation tickets (I didn't need to) and closing T2 tickets (T2 team appreciated it, management did not).

    Like many others have said, the job title means little. If anything though Network Engineer is a progression from NOC Engineer. If you had the choice between the two, Network Engineer will probably be better in the long run.
  • sillymcnastysillymcnasty Posts: 254Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Job titles might not mean much, but it looks good on a resume for HR filters.
  • NOC-NinjaNOC-Ninja Posts: 1,403Member
    Its not the job title,its the responsibilities and the pay.
    There are analyst title out there that makes more than an engineer. lol
  • Codeman6669Codeman6669 Posts: 227Member
    take the job that has a mix of:

    the environment you like/ the people/ conditions
    a place where you can get your hands on a lot of different aspects of the technology. Not a job that has you doing the exact same small portion job.

    Thats my advice.
    Good job on the offers. When i got my Network+ I had two interviews and two job offers the same day. Now that I have a CCNP, i MIGHT get a call and interview. No offers yet. IMO learn programming. It seems to be a field that not only had a million more jobs, but its skill set can overlap quite a bit with networking and scripting (Python)
  • sillymcnastysillymcnasty Posts: 254Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    NOC-Ninja wrote: »
    Its not the job title,its the responsibilities and the pay.
    There are analyst title out there that makes more than an engineer. lol


    I'm a sysadmin but I'm more of a glorified windows update clicker.
  • volfkhatvolfkhat Posts: 947Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    I'm a sysadmin but I'm more of a glorified windows update clicker.
    I feel your pain.
    All i seem to do is write firewall rules all day.
    Yuck.

    But thanks to the company's CBTnuggets library, i've been growing other skills (F5 Load-balancing, Palo Altos, Reading Packet Captures, Vmware 6, etc).

    No matter WHAT your title is.... keeping growing.
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