What is computer support specialist

Are you someone who is technology savvy? Do you spend a lot of your time tearing and putting together your computer so that it has the state of the art soft and hardware? Do your friends and family often call you to fix their computers because you’re good at fixing their issues? If you can identify with any of these traits, then you should consider a career in computer support.
According to the US Department of Labor’s US Bureau of Labor Statistics, these specialists advise people on how to use their computer software and hardware (as well as accessories such as tablets and mobile phones). They also provide technical support to any issues related to the equipment. Depending on the organization, they may provide audio visual support at meetings and conferences because the content is often connected to the computer. The growth rate for these positions is higher than normal at 17% from 2012 – 2022, mostly because technology is playing an increasingly larger role in our lives, from monitoring the house to internet service to mobile banking1.
However, the role of computer support technician is far from being a desk job. As businesses become more global and we are given more resources to work remotely, we are no longer bound by the traditional nine-to-five office hours. As a result, computer specialists have to provide round the clock service to the workers who may be working remotely across different time zones. Furthermore, as office support resources become more centralized, computer technicians often find themselves traveling to different locations across the country to provide support.
While a formal undergraduate education is not necessarily for a career as a computer support technician, training at a local community college in a form of a certificate or associate degree program can be very beneficial. Even though the growth rate for jobs in this field is in great demand, this industry is quite competitive because there are so many people out there with technical training in this area.
Below are some of the skills and qualities which enable computer support technicians to be successful in their jobs:
• Troubleshooting: As specialists who are required to fix issues, troubleshooting skills are extremely important for this role. Computer support technicians need to be able to assess the computer, identify the issues and come up with a solution to resolve the problem.
• Communications: Computer support technicians provide client service to both internal and external staff. As a result, communications is extremely important as people become concerned about the information stored in their computer. Most often than not, they encounter computer issues at a time when there is a critical deadline. As a result, most people who call computer support for assistance are usually not in a great mood. Computer support technicians not only need to provide technical assistance, sometimes they need to provide emotion support to their customers as well.
• Technical know-how: Hardware and software are highly technical components and technicians need to have the right training in order to fix any issues that may arise. Many people rely on their expertise to get them out of a jam, especially at a time where deadlines are looming!
• Organization: It is highly unlikely that people encounter issues one at a time, when it rains, it pours! Computer support technicians need to be able to prioritize their client requests and escalate issues when they are beyond their scope to deliver on clients’ expectations.
For more information on a career path as a computer support technician, please contact your high school counselor.
1. Computer Support Technicians. US Bureau of Labor Statistics. US Department of Labor. http://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/computer-support-specialists.htm

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