“Can you check my system administrator resume?”
We get this asked at least once every day. So, we finally decided to write a guide that everyone can use whether you’re entry level or experienced, whether you’re a Windows or Linux system administrator.
Most of the advice you found here has been extensively tested and verified by hiring managers from organizations of various shapes and sizes.
What you will learn here?
- You’ll walk through some real system admin resumes that scored big
- You’ll learn what’s the most important thing for a hiring manager in your resume
- Walk through of what makes the resume sections good and bad (with examples)
- At the end, you’ll walk away with a perfect resume for your job application
Let’s first start by looking at some resumes that made it big. We handpicked these resumes by considering how difficult it was for them to stand out, how picky recruiters were and the job diversity they represented. Above all, they won the job!
System Administrator Resume Sample
Related Resume Samples for SysAdmins
Linux System Administrator Resume Sample
Entry level System Administrator Resume Sample
Sample Windows System Administrator Resume
How to write a system administrator resume?
A hiring manager would look more for network engineering experience. More specifically, the hiring manager would try to evaluate your experience of setting up and hardening enterprise firewalls, whether you can set up cloud environments, etc.
Most system administrators resume are filled with a lot of help desk credentials rather than actual technical skills.
You’d be surprised to hear how many recruiters only try to look for CCNA, AWS practitioner certifications, Net+ certification, etc. when applicants are giving them everything else.
Here’s what a recruiter will look for in your resume:
- What business units have you supported?
- What technologies and tools are you familiar with?
- What certifications do you have?
- On what capacity have you worked with?
The most important sections of a system administrator resume:
- Resume summary
- Resume experience
- Technical skills
- Resume header
When you craft a resume considering these, you write a resume that recruiters want, with the perfect balance without information overload.
Examples of good and bad resume headers for a System administrator
Let’s say that you are a Linux System administrator, and imagine your resume header looks something like this:
While this seems all good, the devil is in the details.
If you look closely, you could’ve used this real estate to make an impact. See the example below to notice how small tweaks can make a huge impact right from the start.
When someone reads your resume header now, they are going to see that you are certified, and high relevant applicant.
First impression matters a lot. And, as we move towards writing the resume experience section, we will show you can reinforce the impression you made here and actually land an interview call.
Write a System Administrator Resume Summary or Objective?
The golden rule here is that - you write a summary if you are just looking for another system administrator role. But if you’re an entry level candidate or writing your resume for career transition, go for a resume object.
Let’s start by looking at the most rejectable system administrator resume summary (add this and your resume is invisible)
IT specialist experienced in a broad range of technologies. Looking for roles as a System administrator in an esteemed organization.
Now that we’ve established what you shouldn’t really do, let’s move towards another example that could lead you to rejection.
I am a young IT professional with +2 years experience in IT support in different Enterprise environments. Skillful in Desktop Troubleshooting (Win/Mac), and Web Applications Support. I am currently looking for a Systems Administrator position. I believe I can massively contribute to the company in this position because this is where my passion is - troubleshooting more complex problems.
If you ask a hiring manager on what’s wrong with this sys admin resume summary - you’ll find:
- First of all, it’s too long for a summary
- Secondly, too vague and not pointing to the impact you made
- Lastly, no focus on your skills, the value you bring to an organization and no passion
The biggest problem is that sometimes we write for ourselves, not for the reader. Let’s try to write in a way that provides high relevance and impact to a recruiting manager.
Good System Administrator Resume Sample - Summary
A Microsoft and Cisco certified System admin with 2+ years of experience in healthcare IT enterprise environments. Managed large scale firewalls and networking, extremely proficient with SonicWall, VMware, AWS and have a deep passion for enterprise-wide security management.
Breaking the summary listed above, you can see a couple of things here. Certifications help recruiters know that you are relevant, they are then able to see what you actually did as a windows system admin, and lastly they see that you are passionate about security.
Let’s go through one more resume summary to see this advice in action
Windows System Administrator Resume Summary Examples
An IT professional with proven experience as a Windows System Administrator supporting large organizations.
A Senior Windows System Administrator with 19+ years of experience in Administration of 2012 R Active Directory, providing hardware support for Windows helping 700 employees.
How to write system administrator resume experience
Your resume experience should be included considering the following:
- Skills, tools, and certifications that the job you’re applying to demands
- Relevance with the industry e.g. if you worked for healthcare and the job demands someone from it
- Pickup elements of networking, deployment, maintenance, management, etc. from the job description and make sure to display these competencies via your resume experience
Let’s see how to do that with your resume experience. Below, you’ll find two examples, and we will try to show you the difference between a good and a bad sys admin resume experience.
2 Senior System Administrator Resume Experience Examples
Senior System AdministratorNovotel Inc
Responsible for monitoring and troubleshooting various computer issues for Novotel.
Monitoring and troubleshooting issues with virtual machines and servers.
Windows server 2008/2012/2016 administration.
Manage configuration changes and to Cisco devices.
Installed and managed computer hardware and software.
If someone was reading this resume experience, they would have a hard time figuring out what software you work on, what business unit you support and what does your day to day activities are like.
Senior System AdministratorNovotel Inc
Provided on-site third level support for corporate-wide infrastructure related issues.
Primary System administrator for manufacturing plants in Boston and Worcester, MA.
Worked extensively within the corporate Active Directory and Group policy environment, performing resource provisioning and troubleshooting.
Administered VMware vSphere environment for all corporate and satellite offices, including 2 cluster-based implementations.
Worked with Brocade and Meraki networking products in production environments throughout the corporate infrastructure.
Provided support to corporate voice engineer for Shoretel voice infrastructure.
Installed and supported Untangle and pfSense firewalls to provide cost effective security.
Notice how the resume experience tells an entire story about work scale, technologies and skills of this System administrator. This combination is almost near perfect for hiring.
If you’re writing a junior system administrator resume on the other hand, you can be more creative (cautiously) on how to present your limited working experience. You have a huge empty space that you can either:
- Fill with fluff and make a recruiter regret that they opened your resume and had their time wasted
- Or, you can effectively use the white space and break down your resume experience to three categories: Technology experience, project management, and interpersonal management
Here’s one more Sys Admin resume sample for you to see our advice in action.
Linux System Administrator Resume Sample - Experience
Senior System AdministratorVerizon Wireless Services