Network Architect

England, Essex, Chelmsford
Up to £500 per day
02 Feb 2021
02 Mar 2021
Contract Type

Essex County Council has an ambitious programme of transformation to revolutionise the provision of IT use within the authority. In 2020 we quickly rolled out the latest cloud technology to support new ways of working during COVID, and continuing on that success, our ambition is to be infrastructure free by November 2022. We have an extensive cloud modernisation programme underway to deliver this through migration of services to Microsoft Azure.

We are seeking an experienced Network Architect with significant recent experience of SD-WAN design and implementation to play a key role in the councils ambitious Next Generation Network (NGN) programme. The purpose of this programme is to develop the authority's next generation network - and use the latest technologies to move beyond our existing MPLS to deliver a secure, flexible and cost-effective solution better suited to new ways of working. The programme will also revisit the technology in use for contact centre telephony and converged comms with a view to modernising in line with our Contact Strategy and to support a distributed workforce.

The successful candidate will be the architectural lead for NGN and will be instrumental in determining our architectural approach and principles. You will be embedded within a dedicated programme team and play a key role in defining the requirements and architecture we will use to go to market, evaluating responses and ultimately selecting suppliers. You should be able to demonstrate significant leadership experience and be able to influence at all levels. Experience of producing business cases as well as robust designs and reports is also essential. You should be CCNP, CCIE or CCDE certified.

Essex County Council's existing network contract covers the following areas:

  • Contact centres and telephony
  • Mobile telephony
  • End-point connectivity
  • Wi-Fi
  • Firewall Management
  • Security
  • Reporting
  • Patch Management

The successful candidate will be expected to:

  • Work with ECC technical teams and suppliers to establish an understanding of the existing infrastructure and future requirements.
  • Have an up-to-date knowledge and understanding of the networking technology sector, as well as the technical demands of the future.
  • Have a broad vision of how a modern network/infrastructure could look and the technologies used to construct it.
  • Hold an in-depth understanding of the direction of the major technology suppliers' roadmap for the future.
  • Assist ECC in determining/designing its future needs whilst following established principles which include; delivers the integrity of a high availability network whilst providing maximum performance for all users, value for money, flexible/scalable, is future proof, highly secure, any location any device
  • Assist ECC in establishing comprehensive low-level requirements for each area of its infrastructure
  • Work with ECC in establishing the best way forward for each of the network packages, both in the short term and long term.
  • Work with ECC procurement team to establish ITT technical content.
  • Work with colleagues to evaluate tender responses and inform selection of suppliers.
  • To recognise the importance of customer focus and of serving the needs of the organisation

Additional experience and qualifications:

  • Architectural knowledge of Enterprise network design and associated technologies
  • Knowledge and experience of contact centre solutions and converged communications technology
  • Knowledge and experience of SD-WAN technologies
  • Knowledge and experience of VPN technology (e.g. Microsoft DirectAccess, Palo Alto Global Protect) and split tunnelling.
  • Routing protocols and technologies including MPLS, BGP, OSPF, RIP and RIPv2
  • Firewall, load balancing and filter technologies and capabilities
  • Experience of Azure networking components
  • Years of design and architecture experience with a preference on large Service Provider, Government or Enterprise environments.
  • MPLS

What's in it for you

  • Make an impact on the lives of residents in Essex.
  • Be a part of a new forward-thinking Technology Services Team shaping the future of networking in Essex County Council and partners.
  • Engage directly with customers, suppliers and stakeholders to design and deliver meaningful, measurable technology change.
  • Play a key role in the successful migration of an Enterprise IT service into the cloud.

Please note that Essex County Council has determined that the off-payroll working rules will apply to this assignment and where a worker elects to provide their services through an intermediary (such as a personal services company) then income tax and primary national insurance contributions will be deducted at source from any payments made to the intermediary.

This position will initially, in line with current government guidance be based from home, with an expectation of being home based for the foreseeable future. However, if / when government guidelines change the role may then revert to being office based, whilst retaining some flexible working options.

As part of employment with Essex County Council should your role require a DBS check you will be required to register with the DBS update service. The DBS update service ensures all registered DBS certificates are kept up to date and allows authorised parties to view the status of your certificate. This is an annual subscription and you will be responsible for ensuring this is maintained. For further information on the DBS update service please visit:

Essex County Council is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults and expects all employees and volunteers to share this commitment.

We seek the best talent from the widest pool of people as diversity is key to our success.