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Become A Computer Network Specialist

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Working As A Computer Network Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $58,841

    Average Salary

What Does A Computer Network Specialist Do

Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.

Duties

Computer network support specialists typically do the following:

  • Test and evaluate existing network systems
  • Perform regular maintenance to ensure that networks operate correctly
  • Troubleshoot local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), and Internet systems

Computer network support specialists, also called technical support specialists, usually work in their organization’s IT department. They help IT staff analyze, troubleshoot, and evaluate computer network problems. They play an important role in the routine maintenance of their organization’s networks such as performing file backups on the network. Maintenance can be performed daily, weekly, or monthly and is important to an organization’s disaster recovery efforts. Solving an IT problem promptly is important because organizations depend on their network systems. Network support specialists may assist the organization’s computer users through phone, email, or in-person visits. They often work under network and computer systems administrators, who handle more complex tasks.

Computer user support specialists typically do the following:

  • Pay attention to customers’ descriptions of their computer problems
  • Ask customers questions to properly diagnose the problem
  • Walk customers through the recommended problem-solving steps
  • Set up or repair computer equipment and related devices
  • Train users to work with new computer hardware or software, such as printers, word-processing software, and email
  • Provide other team members and managers in the organization with information about what gives customers the most trouble and about other concerns customers have

Computer user support specialists, also called help-desk technicians, usually provide technical help to non-IT computer users. They respond to phone and email requests for help. They can usually help users remotely, but they also may make site visits so that they can solve a problem in person.

Help-desk technicians may solve a range of problems that vary with the industry and the particular firm. Some technicians work for large software companies or for support service firms and must give instructions to business customers on how to use business-specific programs such as an electronic health records program used in hospitals or physicians’ offices. Sometimes they work with other technicians to resolve problems.

Other help-desk technicians work in call centers, answering simpler questions from non-business customers. They may walk customers through basic steps in re-establishing an Internet connection or troubleshooting household IT products such as a Wi-Fi router.

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How To Become A Computer Network Specialist

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.

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Do you work as a Computer Network Specialist?

Computer Network Specialist Jobs

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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Computer Analyst 3.2 years
Network Technician 3.1 years
Network Assistant 1.8 years
Top Employers Before
Technician 3.2%
Owner 2.3%
Top Employers After
Owner 3.4%
Server 2.6%

Do you work as a Computer Network Specialist?

Computer Network Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

83.3%

Female

15.9%

Unknown

0.8%
Ethnicity

White

57.1%

Hispanic or Latino

16.4%

Black or African American

12.3%

Asian

9.4%

Unknown

4.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

70.0%

Dakota

10.0%

Hebrew

10.0%

Hungarian

10.0%
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Computer Network Specialist Education

Schools

University of Maryland - University College

12.3%

University of Phoenix

10.5%

Norfolk State University

7.0%

Western Governors University

5.3%

Trident Technical College

5.3%

Community College of the Air Force

5.3%

Capella University

5.3%

University of Arkansas at Little Rock

5.3%

George Mason University

5.3%

Baltimore City Community College

3.5%

Morgan State University

3.5%

Wor-Wic Community College

3.5%

New York University

3.5%

University of Texas at El Paso

3.5%

South Texas College

3.5%

Strayer University

3.5%

Kaplan University

3.5%

Guilford Technical Community College

3.5%

ITT Technical Institute-Springfield (Virginia)

3.5%

Davenport University

3.5%
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Majors

Computer Science

17.9%

Information Technology

16.0%

Computer Networking

11.8%

Computer Information Systems

11.3%

Business

6.6%

Electrical Engineering

4.2%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.8%

Computer Technical Support

2.8%

Computer Engineering

2.8%

Criminal Justice

2.8%

Liberal Arts

2.8%

Management

2.4%

Management Information Systems

2.4%

Industrial Technology

2.4%

Information Systems

2.4%

Education

2.4%

Project Management

1.9%

Philosophy

1.4%

Nursing

1.4%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

1.4%
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Degrees

Bachelors

34.0%

Other

26.2%

Associate

20.9%

Masters

9.2%

Certificate

5.3%

Diploma

2.5%

Doctorate

1.8%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Computer Network Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Comp Network Engineering Specialist Google Inc. Mountain View, CA Nov 10, 2016 $130,000
Computer Network Specialists Deemsys Inc. Gahanna, OH Jul 09, 2016 $77,000 -
$80,000
Computer Network Specialist Akcia, Inc. Kansas City, MO Sep 03, 2015 $77,000
Computer Network Specialist Sportsmedia Technology Corporation Jacksonville, FL Mar 12, 2012 $75,000
Computer Network Specialist Information & Display Systems, LLC Jacksonville, FL Mar 12, 2012 $75,000
Computer Network Specialist Deemsys Inc. Gahanna, OH Sep 15, 2014 $65,000
Computer Network Specialist Deemsys Inc. Edison, NJ Sep 15, 2014 $65,000
Computer Network Specialists Americannurses.Com Gahanna, OH Aug 12, 2014 $65,000
Computer Network Specialists Deemsys Inc. Gahanna, OH Sep 15, 2014 $65,000
Computer Network Specialist Schrill Technologies Inc. Washington, DC Jan 03, 2016 $65,000
Computer Network Specialist Vinedo Supply Corp Miami, FL Oct 01, 2012 $61,000
Computer Network Specialist MOTO Direct Inc. Davie, FL Sep 15, 2015 $61,000
Computer Network Specialist Srishti I2I Biz Solutions Inc. San Diego, CA Jan 09, 2016 $60,757
Computer Network Specialist Pittsburgh Industrial Supplyu.K. Inc. Miami, FL Sep 15, 2012 $60,757
Computer Network Specialist Pittsburgh Industrial Supply U.K. Inc. Miami, FL Sep 01, 2012 $60,757
Computer Storage Area Network Specialist Vyzer Solutions Inc. Richardson, TX Sep 01, 2014 $60,000
Computer Network Specialist Asia Star Broadcasting Inc. Edison, NJ Jan 09, 2016 $60,000
Computer Network Specialist Design Studio Meta, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Jun 10, 2015 $56,139
Network & Computer Specialist Rexel Inc. Beaverton, OR Mar 14, 2015 $54,053
IT Computer Network Specialist Greenpeace, Inc. Washington, DC Oct 01, 2015 $51,513
Computer Network Specialist Design By Yagi Inc. New York, NY Jan 09, 2016 $50,710
Computer Supprot Engineer/Network Specialist Softential, Inc. Herndon, VA Sep 24, 2013 $50,523
Network & Computer Specialist Rexel, Inc. Beaverton, OR Mar 14, 2014 $49,295
Computer Network Specialist Greenbox Loans, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Oct 31, 2014 $48,439
Computer Network Specialist KWC Partners LLP Englewood Cliffs, NJ Sep 16, 2014 $48,335

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Top Skills for A Computer Network Specialist

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  1. Computer
  2. Customer Service
  3. Windows XP
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Created, modified and implemented client system standards across all platform environments, including application support standards and computer policy standards.
  • Generated additional income by providing excellent customer service which resulted in improved client relations.
  • Experience implementing Remote Desktop management for Windows 2003 networks runningWindows XP and/or Terminal Servers.
  • Insured network printers and peripheral devices and software operated efficiently.
  • Receive user trouble calls for all personal computers, terminals, and data communication equipment problems.

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Top 10 Best States for Computer Network Specialists

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Massachusetts
  3. Alaska
  4. Delaware
  5. Colorado
  6. Rhode Island
  7. New Jersey
  8. Minnesota
  9. Virginia
  10. Connecticut
  • (624 jobs)
  • (1,222 jobs)
  • (120 jobs)
  • (123 jobs)
  • (861 jobs)
  • (136 jobs)
  • (973 jobs)
  • (782 jobs)
  • (2,216 jobs)
  • (356 jobs)

Top Computer Network Specialist Employers

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Jobs From Top Computer Network Specialist Employers

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