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Become A Computer Technician/Manager

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Working As A Computer Technician/Manager

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $71,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Computer Technician/Manager 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 Technician/Manager

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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Computer Technician/Manager Career Paths

Computer Technician/Manager
Computer Technician Technical Support Specialist Systems Administrator
Information Technology Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Computer Technician Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Computer Technician Network Administrator Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Systems Engineer Project Manager
Service Delivery Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Support Specialist Systems Engineer Senior Software Engineer
Chief Technology Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Design Technician Design Engineer Systems Engineer
Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Design Technician Design Engineer Project Leader
Technical Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Design Technician Engineering Technician Systems Administrator
Information Technology Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Network Administrator Information Technology Manager
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Infrastructure Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Help Desk Analyst Desktop Support Technician
Senior Desktop Support Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Technician Network Technician Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Technician Field Service Technician
Technical Services Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Technician Consultant Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Technical Services Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Computer Aided Design Designer Consultant Information Technology Consultant
Information Technology Systems Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Computer Aided Design Designer Senior Computer Operator Senior System Administrator
Information Technology Supervisor, Information Technology
6 Yearsyrs
Computer Aided Design Designer Design Manager Technical Support Manager
Service Desk Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Driver Emergency Medical Technician Clinical Research Coordinator
Data Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Driver Specialist Senior Customer Service Representative
Technical Expert
5 Yearsyrs
Driver Technical Support Technician Service Desk Analyst
Incident Manager
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Computer Technician/Manager?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Computer Assistant 2.4 years
Junior Technician 1.7 years
Top Careers Before Computer Technician/Manager
Cashier 6.7%
Manager 5.4%
Technician 4.2%
Owner 3.8%
Supervisor 2.5%
Top Careers After Computer Technician/Manager
Owner 4.7%
Technician 4.4%
Manager 3.7%
Cashier 3.4%
Internship 3.0%

Do you work as a Computer Technician/Manager?

How Would You Rate The Salary Of a Computer Technician/Manager?

Have you worked as a Computer Technician/Manager? Help other job seekers by rating your experience as a Computer Technician/Manager.

Top Skills for A Computer Technician/Manager

  1. Computer Hardware
  2. Laptops
  3. Customer Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Helped peers with identifying computer hardware parts and functionality.
  • Fixed customer hardware/software problems in computers, printers, laptops and home networks, in shop and on location.
  • Cited for excellence in interpersonal communications, teamwork, customer service, flexibility and reliability.
  • Quoted, advised, and completed hardware and software upgrades of a wide variety.
  • Provided technical support, troubleshooting & configuration and maintenance computer system.

Computer Technician/Manager Demographics

Gender

Male

73.1%

Female

16.4%

Unknown

10.5%
Ethnicity

White

57.5%

Hispanic or Latino

18.7%

Black or African American

10.4%

Asian

9.2%

Unknown

4.2%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

54.2%

Arabic

12.5%

French

8.3%

Greek

8.3%

Chinese

4.2%

Occidental

4.2%

Armenian

4.2%

Mandarin

4.2%
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Computer Technician/Manager Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

19.0%

Western Governors University

6.3%

Pennsylvania State University

6.3%

Houston Community College

6.3%

University of Utah

6.3%

Troy University

4.8%

Tarleton State University

4.8%

Central New Mexico Community College

4.8%

Universal Technical Institute

4.8%

Saint Leo University

4.8%

Columbus State Community College

3.2%

Suffolk County Community College

3.2%

University of Houston

3.2%

Arizona State University

3.2%

ITT Technical Institute-San Antonio

3.2%

University of Washington

3.2%

Remington College

3.2%

New Mexico State University

3.2%

California State University - Sacramento

3.2%

Hinds Community College

3.2%
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Majors

Computer Science

19.0%

Business

12.3%

Computer Information Systems

11.4%

Information Technology

10.4%

Electrical Engineering

7.0%

Computer Networking

5.7%

Drafting And Design

3.5%

Electrical Engineering Technology

3.5%

Computer Engineering

3.2%

Management

2.5%

Computer Technical Support

2.5%

Graphic Design

2.5%

Economics

2.2%

Communication

2.2%

Criminal Justice

2.2%

Information Systems

2.2%

General Studies

1.9%

English

1.9%

Psychology

1.9%

Political Science

1.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

34.5%

Other

26.2%

Associate

22.4%

Masters

8.6%

Certificate

5.4%

Diploma

1.9%

Doctorate

0.6%

License

0.4%
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