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|
|Reservoir Modeling & Well Planning Specialist||BP America Inc.||Houston, TX||Feb 23, 2015||$205,525|
|Geologist/Reservoir Modeling & Well Planning Specialist||BP America Inc.||Houston, TX||Jul 01, 2015||$205,525|
|Senior Planning Specialist||Exxon Mobil Corporation||Houston, TX||Aug 25, 2013||$185,600 -
|Construction Scheduling and Planning Specialist||Omnibuild||New York, NY||Sep 19, 2016||$150,000|
|Operations Planning and Exucution Specialist||Facebook, Inc.||Menlo Park, CA||Dec 14, 2015||$142,581|
|Vice President, Planning Specialist||SMBC Nikko Securities America, Inc.||New York, NY||Aug 10, 2015||$130,000 -
|Enterprise Resource Planning Specialist||The Nasdaq OMX Group, Inc.||Rockville, MD||Aug 10, 2015||$121,701 -
|Business Planning Specialist||Apple Inc.||Cupertino, CA||Dec 01, 2014||$119,800 -
|Product Definition & Change Planning Specialist||CTS Technical Services, Inc.||Everett, WA||Jan 06, 2014||$114,263 -
|Lead Marketing Planning Specialist||Sephora USA Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Nov 12, 2014||$110,900|
|Financial Planning Specialist||Eaton Corporation||Galesburg, MI||Sep 10, 2014||$108,120|
|Financial Planning Specialist||Eaton Corporation||Galesburg, MI||Feb 11, 2015||$108,120|
|Senior Business Planning Specialist||Continental Tire The Americas, LLC||Fort Mill, SC||Jun 24, 2016||$86,570 -
|Business Planning Specialist||Chroma Ate, Inc.||Irvine, CA||Sep 08, 2015||$85,717|
|Cognos Planning Specialist||Citagus Software USA Incorporated||Duluth, GA||Sep 16, 2013||$85,000|
|Specialist, Strategic Planning & Performance Management||TXU Energy Retail Company LLC||Irving, TX||Sep 29, 2016||$85,000 -
|Strategic Planning Specialist (AVP)||Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation||New York, NY||Mar 10, 2015||$85,000 -
|Market Planning Specialist||Lexisnexis Risk Solutions Ga, Inc.||Alpharetta, GA||Oct 14, 2016||$85,000 -
|Market Planning Specialist||Lexisnexis Risk Solutions Ga, Inc.||Levittown, NY||Aug 10, 2015||$85,000 -
|Business Planning Specialist||Hewlett-Packard Company||Palo Alto, CA||Nov 05, 2016||$83,408 -
|Transportation Planning Specialist 3||State of Washington Department of Transportation||Olympia, WA||Sep 16, 2015||$68,412|
|Specialist, Accounting and Finance Planning||Cureline, Inc.||South San Francisco, CA||Sep 14, 2013||$68,000|
|Forecasting and Planning Specialist||AGCO Corporation||Batavia, IL||Sep 03, 2014||$68,000|
|Forecasting and Planning Specialist||AGCO Corporation||Batavia, IL||Sep 01, 2015||$68,000|
|E2E Forecast & Planning Specialist||SONY Mobile Communications (USA) Inc.||Atlanta, GA||Sep 11, 2013||$67,730 -
|Load Forecast and Planning Specialist||Nebraska Municipal Power Pool||Lincoln, NE||Aug 20, 2016||$66,400|
|Financial Planning and Analysis Specialist||Abs-CBN International||Redwood City, CA||Sep 09, 2013||$66,000|
|Senior Planning Specialist||Hospira, Inc.||Lake Forest, IL||Sep 15, 2015||$65,650|
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