There are several major trends happening in the role of the Network Engineer. No matter what type of business is being supported by the network, the engineer is constantly being tasked with new projects. Included in these is the implementation of new technologies such as virtual infrastructure in the Data Center, improved wireless systems to support and secure BYOD, rolling critical applications to cloud services, supporting Unified Communications and Video services, and maintaining top performance for applications and services such as VoIP. On the cabling end of things, with 10GBASE-T ports being introduced,the Network Engineer is required to ensure the infrastructure cabling is up to par for the future needs of the business. Of course all these trends must take place on a limited budget, reduced staff, and no downtime.
The Network Engineer of today is also considered the final escalation point for any performance problem, regardless if the root cause is the network, server, or application. They are expected to have the tools to isolate and identify the issue, working with server and application teams to bring it to resolution. “It’s not the network” is no longer an acceptable response to a performance problem, and there is a growing trend in the Network Engineer role to resolve root cause, no matter who is to blame.