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Become A Field Specialist

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Working As A Field Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $76,354

    Average Salary

What Does A Field 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 Field 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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Field Specialist Jobs

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Field Specialist Career Paths

Field Specialist
Service Manager General Manager Account Manager
Client Services Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager Program Director
Clinical Director
9 Yearsyrs
Photographer Specialist Data Analyst
Data Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Foreman Maintenance Technician Engineer
Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Specialist Analyst Finance Analyst
Finance Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Delivery Driver Service Technician Technical Support Specialist
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Field Supervisor Operations Manager Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Support Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Photographer Delivery Driver Laboratory Technician
Laboratory Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Field Service Supervisor Operations Manager Operations Vice President
President Of Operations
9 Yearsyrs
Delivery Driver Maintenance Technician Production Supervisor
Quality Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Service Manager Branch Manager Account Executive
Relationship Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Specialist Account Manager
Senior Account Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Field Supervisor Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Service Delivery Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Foreman Service Technician Service Manager
Service Director
10 Yearsyrs
Driver Dispatcher Operations Manager
Site Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Driver Delivery Driver Operations Manager
Supply Chain Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Sales Specialist Human Resources Coordinator Technical Recruiter
Technical Account Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Field Service Supervisor Service Manager Production Manager
Technical Manager
7 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Field Specialist?

Field Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

73.2%

Female

25.5%

Unknown

1.2%
Ethnicity

White

59.6%

Hispanic or Latino

17.4%

Black or African American

11.7%

Asian

6.8%

Unknown

4.5%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

49.5%

French

10.1%

Dakota

4.0%

Carrier

4.0%

Korean

4.0%

German

3.0%

Greek

3.0%

Mandarin

3.0%

Arabic

3.0%

Italian

3.0%

Chinese

2.0%

Vietnamese

2.0%

Dutch

2.0%

Turkish

1.0%

Portuguese

1.0%

Irish

1.0%

Deseret

1.0%

Japanese

1.0%

Hmong

1.0%

Czech

1.0%
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Field Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

16.2%

University of Louisiana at Lafayette

6.9%

West Virginia University

6.5%

Arizona State University

5.6%

Texas A&M University

5.6%

Michigan State University

5.1%

Universal Technical Institute

5.1%

Louisiana Tech University

4.6%

Midland College

4.2%

Texas Tech University

4.2%

University of Oklahoma

4.2%

Columbia Southern University

3.7%

University of Texas at Arlington

3.7%

Houston Community College

3.7%

University of Texas at Austin

3.7%

Community College of the Air Force

3.7%

Western Michigan University

3.7%

The Academy

3.2%

Temple University

3.2%

University of Central Florida

3.2%
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Majors

Business

27.7%

Electrical Engineering

8.1%

Management

5.5%

Criminal Justice

5.1%

Marketing

4.5%

Computer Science

4.2%

Geology

4.1%

General Studies

3.9%

Communication

3.9%

Environmental Science

3.6%

Electrical Engineering Technology

3.5%

Education

3.3%

Psychology

3.3%

Nursing

3.2%

Finance

2.9%

Computer Information Systems

2.9%

Automotive Technology

2.7%

Industrial Technology

2.6%

Biology

2.5%

English

2.5%
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Degrees

Bachelors

45.4%

Other

24.2%

Associate

12.7%

Masters

10.2%

Certificate

4.7%

Diploma

1.3%

Doctorate

1.1%

License

0.3%
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Real Field Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
MWD Field Specialist IV Baker Hughes Incorporated Broussard, LA Oct 01, 2012 $114,500
SR. Mechanical Field Specialist Midrex Technologies Inc. Charlotte, NC Jun 15, 2012 $113,475
Lead Field Team Specialist Research In Motion Corporation San Diego, CA Jul 01, 2012 $104,813
Field Specialist Recruiter Schlumberger Technology Corporation Sugar Land, TX Mar 21, 2011 $104,000
Field Specialist Elite Pipeline Services Inc. Wyoming, MI Mar 11, 2013 $83,480
Field Specialist Elite Pipeline Services LLC Wyoming, MI Apr 30, 2014 $83,480
Field Specialist Xpert Schlumberger Technology Corporation Minot, ND Aug 13, 2015 $83,100
Field Specialist Optasense Inc., A Qinetiq Company Houston, TX Apr 09, 2016 $82,056 -
$92,200
Senior Mechanical Field Specialist Midrex Technologies Inc. Charlotte, NC Oct 01, 2009 $69,638 -
$85,200
Field Specialist Elite Pipeline Services Inc. Wyoming, MI Mar 10, 2013 $67,828 -
$80,871
Senior Mechanical Field Specialist Midrex Technologies Inc. Charlotte, NC Oct 01, 2009 $67,638 -
$85,200
Field Specialist II-LWD Baker Hughes Incorporated Bakersfield, CA Feb 01, 2011 $66,976
Senior Field Specialist SGS North America, Inc. Spring, TX Nov 15, 2009 $66,560 -
$70,720
Senior Field Specialist SGS North America, Inc. Spring, TX Sep 16, 2010 $66,560 -
$70,720
Field Specialist Recruiter Schlumberger Technology Corporation Denver, CO Nov 19, 2014 $66,206 -
$86,100
Senior Field Specialist Mueller Co LLC Chattanooga, TN Nov 07, 2014 $59,832
Field Specialist Recruiter Schlumberger Technology Corporation Von Ormy, TX Jan 08, 2014 $59,634 -
$84,000
LWD Field Specialist II Baker Hughes Incorporated Mount Pleasant, PA Sep 12, 2013 $56,722
Melon Field Specialist Ready Pac Produce, Inc. Irwindale, CA Oct 01, 2009 $55,000
Melon Field Specialist Ready Pac Foods, Inc. Irwindale, CA Oct 01, 2009 $55,000
Field Specialist Elite Pipeline Services LLC Wyoming, MI Jan 26, 2013 $54,784
Field Specialist Elite Pipeline Services Inc. Wyoming, MI Jan 26, 2013 $54,784
Field Specialist 1 Baker Hughes Incorporated Liberty, TX Sep 17, 2014 $54,219
LWD Field Specialist II Baker Hughes Incorporated Mount Pleasant, PA Dec 01, 2011 $54,080
Entomology Field Specialist South Dakota State University Rapid City, SD Sep 16, 2013 $54,000

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Top Skills for A Field Specialist

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  1. Safety
  2. Customer Service
  3. Troubleshoot
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Confirm safety and regulatory compliance by completing day-to-day field / plant maintenance, equipment observation and manual operational changes.
  • Supported customer service and corporate efficiency objectives by representing the company in all matters related to facilitating the repair process.
  • Performed equipment inspections, troubleshooting and related maintenance work to ensure proper operation.
  • Displayed strong communication skills and teamwork abilities working and collaborating with Outside Solar Sales Consultants.
  • Earned special HSE recognition for outstanding safety awareness.

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