Network Engineer

Network Engineer Apprenticeship Standard


The primary role of a network engineer is to design, install, maintain and support communication networks within an organisation or between organisations. Network engineers need to maintain high levels of operation of communication networks in order to provide maximum performance and availability for their users, such as staff, clients, customers and suppliers. They will understand network configuration, cloud, network administration and monitoring tools, and be able to give technical advice and guidance.

Typical Job Roles:

Network Technician, Network Engineer, Systems Engineer, Network Administrator

Entry Requirements
Individual employers will set the selection criteria, but this is likely to include A levels; a level 3 apprenticeship or other relevant qualifications; relevant experience and/or an aptitude test with a focus on functional maths.
IT Apprenticeship Level
This is a Level 4 Apprenticeship, to find out more check out our Qualifications Levels.

Technical Competencies
  • Can design simple networks from a well-defined specification and apply appropriate security product and processes
  • Can install and configure network components, including switches, routers and also firewalls
  • Also, can optimise the performance of network systems and services
  • Can monitor, test and adjust network systems and performance to meet accepted standards using diagnostic tools, analysers and also other equipment
  • Can apply diagnostic tools and techniques to identify the causes of network performance issues
  • Also, can apply structured approaches to troubleshooting network issues and also repair faults in hardware, software products and the network
  • Can undertake system upgrades to network hardware, software and operating systems
  • Also, can integrate network related software into an existing network environment
  • Can interpret written requirements and technical specifications for network activities and maintain accurate records of network maintenance activities
  • Can log and respond to network service calls and also provide technical network support to end users as required
  • Also, can document the work done in accordance with agreed procedures
  • Can operate within the parameters of service level agreements, standards and/or agreed response times
  • Can operate effectively in the business environment and responds to business issues related to network engineering
Technical Knowledge and Understanding
  • Understands and applies the principles of networking, protocols and also associated technologies (specifically this should include the latest published versions of OSI layer model, IP, TCP/IP, routing and switching, WANs, LANs)
  • Understands and applies the applied maths required to be a network engineer (e.g. algorithms, data, binary, probability and statistics)
  • Also, understands the causes and consequences of system failure including load balance and storage protocols and responds appropriately
  • Understands the architecture of a typical business IT system, including hardware, OS, server, virtualisation, middleware and applications
  • Understands and also responds to security threats, firewalls and vulnerabilities
Underpinning Skills, Attitudes and Behaviours
  • Logical and creative thinking skills
  • Analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work independently and to take responsibility
  • Can use own initiative
  • A thorough and organised approach
  • Ability to work with a range of internal and external people
  • Ability to communicate effectively in a variety of situations
  • Maintain productive, professional and secure working environment
Apprentices must achieve one internationally recognised vendor or professional qualification, from the right-hand column in the table below. This then exempts one of the Ofqual-regulated knowledge modules, as shown in the left-hand column. Additionally, the knowledge modules are summarised below and further details are available in the occupational brief available from the Tech Partnership at
Knowledge Modules
Vendor or Professional Qualifications
Knowledge Module 1: Network Principles

(for Level 4 Network Engineer Apprenticeship)

CCNA 1 + 2 Network + Juniper JNCIA – Junus
Knowledge Module 2: Network Systems and also Architecture

(for level 4 Network Engineer Apprenticeship)

MCP Server Virtualisation – Windows Server Hyper V MCP MS Exchange Server MCP Server 2012 MCP Windows Administrator Server + Juniper JNCIS – Ent
Knowledge Module 3: Network Security (for level 4 Network Engineer Apprenticeship) Security + CCNA Security MTA Cloud and Mobility Juniper JNCIS – Sec


Also, individual employers will select which vendor or professional qualification the apprentice should take. 
English and Maths
Level 2 English and also Maths will need to be achieved, if not already, prior to taking the endpoint assessment. 
Professional Recognition
Furthermore, this apprenticeship is recognised for entry on to the Register of IT Technicians and those completing their apprenticeships are eligible to apply for registration.