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Because of the wide range of skills used in different computer support jobs, there are many paths into the occupation. A bachelor’s degree is required for some computer support specialist positions, but an associate’s degree or postsecondary classes may be enough for others.Education
Education requirements for computer support specialists vary. Computer user support specialist jobs require some computer knowledge, but not necessarily a postsecondary degree. Applicants who have taken some computer-related classes are often qualified. For computer network support specialists, many employers accept applicants with an associate’s degree, although some prefer applicants to have a bachelor’s degree.
Large software companies that provide support to business users who buy their products or services often require a bachelor’s degree. Positions that are more technical are likely to require a degree in a field such as computer science, engineering, or information science, but for others, the applicant’s field of study is less important.
To keep up with changes in technology, many computer support specialists continue their education throughout their careers.Certification
Certification programs are generally offered by vendors or from vendor-neutral certification providers. Certification validates the knowledge of and best practices required by computer support specialists. Companies may require their computer support specialists to hold certifications in the products the companies use.Advancement
Many computer support specialists advance to other information technology positions, such as network and computer systems administrators and software developers. Some become managers in the computer support services department. Some organizations provide paths for support specialists to move into other parts of the organization, such as sales. For more information, see the profiles on network and computer systems administrators and software developers.Important Qualities
Customer-service skills. Computer support specialists must be patient and sympathetic. They must often help people who are frustrated with the software or hardware they are trying to use.
Listening skills. Support workers must be able to understand the problems that their customers are describing and know when to ask questions to clarify the situation.
Problem-solving skills. Support workers must identify both simple and complex computer problems, analyze them, and solve them.
Speaking skills. Support workers must describe the solutions to computer problems in a way that a nontechnical person can understand.
Writing skills. Strong writing skills are useful for preparing instructions and email responses for employees and customers, as well as real-time web chat interactions.
|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Application Specialist||Bloomberg, LP||New York, NY||Feb 09, 2015||$205,000|
|Application Specialist||Bloomberg, LP||New York, NY||Sep 01, 2015||$200,000|
|Advisory Application Specialist||Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center||Middletown, NJ||Aug 22, 2016||$165,000|
|Applications Specialist, Saas||M. Arthur Gensler, Jr. & Associates, Inc.||San Francisco, CA||May 21, 2015||$150,000|
|Package Application Enablement Specialist||IBM Corporation||Atlanta, GA||Aug 15, 2016||$145,000|
|Separation Product and Application Specialist||ALFA Laval Inc.||Richmond, VA||Feb 26, 2015||$144,498|
|Separation Product and Application Specialist||ALFA Laval Inc.||Richmond, VA||Jul 24, 2015||$144,489|
|Application Specialist-News and Research||Bloomberg, LP||New York, NY||Dec 22, 2015||$140,500|
|Lead Data Informatics Application Specialist||Carefirst of Maryland Inc.||Baltimore, MD||Mar 15, 2016||$136,635|
|Application Specialist||San Diego County Credit Union||San Diego, CA||Jan 10, 2016||$134,325|
|Applications Specialist||Selective Insurance Company of America||Branchville, NJ||Feb 06, 2015||$131,629|
|Applications Specialist||Google Inc.||New York, NY||Jan 26, 2016||$130,000|
|Applications Specialist 2||IMS Health Incorporated||Bensalem, PA||Nov 15, 2016||$125,629|
|Applications Specialist 2||IMS Health Incorporated||Collegeville, PA||Jul 05, 2015||$100,360|
|Applications Specialist 2||IMS Health Incorporated||Collegeville, PA||Sep 26, 2015||$100,360|
|Applications Specialist||Vision Research, Inc.||Wayne, NJ||Aug 07, 2016||$100,000 -
|Web Application Specialist||Selective Insurance Company of America||Glastonbury, CT||Sep 26, 2015||$100,000|
|Web Application Specialist||Selective Insurance Company of America||Glastonbury, CT||Aug 09, 2015||$100,000|
|Applications Specialist 3||IMS Health Incorporated||San Francisco, CA||Jan 01, 2016||$100,000|
|Technical & Applications Management Specialist IV||ADP Technology Services, Inc.||Roseland, NJ||Oct 08, 2016||$97,822 -
|Application Specialist, Tech Lead||Checkfree Services Corporation||Alpharetta, GA||Jan 10, 2016||$86,000 -
|AEC Application Specialist||Ideate, Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Jun 09, 2016||$85,000|
|Applications Specialist||Carl Zeiss Microscopy, LLC.||Pleasanton, CA||Sep 17, 2016||$85,000|
|Lead Application Specialist||Forever 21, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Sep 01, 2015||$85,000|
|Application Management Specialist II||The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.||Pittsburgh, PA||Sep 06, 2015||$84,157 -
|ERP Applications Specialist||Ascom Network Testing Inc.||Reston, VA||Jul 10, 2016||$84,000 -
|Consultant 1-Application Specialist||Unisys Corporation||Chantilly, VA||Aug 15, 2016||$83,929|
|Data and Application Specialist||Plymouth Rock Management Company of New Jersey||Red Bank, NJ||Apr 04, 2016||$83,741 -
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