I'm a Sys Admin for a small (but successful and growing) company (~60 employees). I've got roughly 5-6 years of actual sys admin experience, plus another 5+ years of lower level work in the industry. I'm responsible for most everything above a helpdesk level in the company (server[windows]/network[cisco]/firewall/SAN[emc] setup/configuration/maintenance/troubleshooting), lead many projects, analyze system data -- I'm sure you've heard it all before...I have a bunch of certs, most are just "nice to have", but the ones that actually apply to my role are CCNA, MSCE, VCP (VMware). If things go wrong, I'm first in line to resolve the issue. I'm not management (no one reports to me).

I've seen many of these sorts of questions online before, and I know the typical response is "too many variables, depends on location, industry type" etc etc. I'm just wondering (ballpark) what I should be looking for. I've tried to give as much detail as I can, but if I'm missing something, I'd be glad to post it.

closed as too localized by Zoredache, Doug Luxem, freiheit, EEAA, Ward Apr 15 '10 at 21:15

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    This really is both to localized and off-topic. As you said, there really is no good answer. OTOH I think you should demand at least 10,000 galactic credits per year. – Zoredache Apr 15 '10 at 20:48
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    ...Because Republic credits are no good here! – Holocryptic Apr 15 '10 at 20:50
  • Subjective, off-topic and too localized. And, realistically, just not enough information to answer the question if it was possible, since there's so much more to it than that. Skills (such as troubleshooting) that don't show up in your list, "soft skills" (communication), accomplishments, etc. How much value do you provide to your company? How much have you made them? How much have you saved them? – freiheit Apr 15 '10 at 21:09
  • The best way to find out what you are worth is to start applying for other jobs in the area. Once you have an offer in hand, you'll have good hard data. Now, if you are not willing to change jobs, that information might be useless. – uSlackr Apr 15 '10 at 21:22
  • @Curtis - In a nutshell, if you need to ask the interwebz, you're not being paid enough... – Joe Internet Apr 15 '10 at 22:59

According to Payscale.com

According to Salary.com

According to Indeed.com

What's it all mean? Nothing. There are too many variables.

In my personal experience, Windows doesn't add much (you're assumed to be Windows-competent). Cisco can add a TON, depending on your actual skill: high-end router config isn't easy. VMWare looks good: virtualization is hot these days. Plus 5 years actual experience (good: 5+ years is good), minus small company (bad: small companies seldom pay what you're worth).

Best bet is to look around and see what everyone else in your company is making. That can give you a benchmark for the area and the industry.


In the US: between $35,000 and $200,000.

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    if you have to ask a question like this then your probably on the $35,000 end. – djangofan Apr 15 '10 at 20:57
  • @djangofan: Not necessarily...A lot of people are bad at knowing what to ask for. If you're a network GOD, and you ask for 35k a year, you're going to get it. I always ask for more than I think I'm going to get...The worst thing that can happen is that they jump on it and say, "Okay!" – Satanicpuppy Apr 15 '10 at 21:07