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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|
|Senior Applications Specialist||Cedars-Sinai Medical Center||Los Angeles, CA||Feb 28, 2014||$126,609|
|Senior Applications Specialist II||Shire Pharmaceuticals LLC||Wayne, PA||Apr 29, 2013||$125,000|
|Vp/Senior Application Specialist-Systems Office||The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd.||Jersey City, NJ||Jul 10, 2013||$125,000|
|SR. Applications Specialist II||Shire Pharmaceuticals Inc.||Chesterbrook, PA||Oct 24, 2011||$125,000|
|Senior Application Specialist||Glenmark Generics Inc., USA||Mahwah, NJ||Oct 28, 2013||$125,000|
|SR. Applications Specialist||IMS Health Incorporated||Seattle, WA||Nov 15, 2013||$120,000|
|Senior Application Specialist||United Nations Federal Credit Union||Islandia, NY||Sep 29, 2014||$112,346|
|Senior Application Specialist||Cheniere Energy, Inc.||Houston, TX||Oct 06, 2014||$112,133|
|Senior Application Specialist||Computer Concepts Corporation||Atlanta, GA||Oct 01, 2011||$110,000|
|Senior Application Specialist, Equity Derivatives||Barclays Services Corp.||New York, NY||Jul 08, 2014||$108,750 -
|Senior Intranet Applications Specialist||Loyola University Chicago||Chicago, IL||Sep 20, 2016||$101,102|
|Senior Intranet Applications Specialist||Loyola University Chicago||Chicago, IL||Oct 19, 2016||$101,102|
|Senior Manager, Application Specialist, Quantitative Analyst||Capital IQ, Inc.||New York, NY||Sep 13, 2016||$101,000 -
|SR. Message Broker Application Specialist||System Soft Technologies LLC||Tampa, FL||Mar 02, 2016||$100,000|
|Senior Applications Integration Specialist||EBS Dealing Resources Inc.||Parsippany-Troy Hills, NJ||Apr 20, 2015||$100,000|
|Senior Application Specialist||Nokia Inc.||Irving, TX||May 05, 2011||$98,940|
|Senior Application Specialist||Telecommunication Systems, Inc.||Seattle, WA||Nov 28, 2011||$98,007|
|SR. Applications Specialist||The Health Care Authority of The City of Huntsville||Huntsville, AL||Aug 17, 2015||$90,002|
|Senior Application Integration Specialist||The Sherwin-Williams Company||Cleveland, OH||Jan 08, 2016||$90,000 -
|Senior Applications Specialist||System Soft Technologies LLC||Chicago, IL||Feb 18, 2015||$90,000|
|Senior Applications Specialist||System Soft Technologies LLC||Greenville, SC||Jun 30, 2014||$90,000|
|Senior Application Specialist||System Soft Technologies LLC||Chicago, IL||Feb 16, 2015||$90,000|
|SR. Applications Specialist||System Soft Technologies LLC||Chicago, IL||Jun 30, 2015||$90,000 -
|Senior Global Technical/Application Specialist||The Sherwin-Williams Company||Cleveland, OH||Apr 01, 2014||$88,300|
|Senior Application Specialist||Spirent Communications||Fort Worth, TX||Sep 01, 2012||$87,200 -
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