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Become A Senior Application Support Specialist

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Working As A Senior Application Support Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $88,881

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Application Support 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 Senior Application Support 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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Senior Application Support Specialist Typical Career Paths

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Average Length of Employment
Senior Specialist 3.7 years
Support Lead 2.6 years
Support Specialist 2.3 years
Top Careers Before Senior Application Support Specialist
Consultant 11.1%
Top Careers After Senior Application Support Specialist
Consultant 7.5%
Bookkeeper 4.5%

Do you work as a Senior Application Support Specialist?

Senior Application Support Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

60.4%

Female

37.4%

Unknown

2.2%
Ethnicity

White

58.6%

Hispanic or Latino

13.8%

Black or African American

13.1%

Asian

9.5%

Unknown

5.0%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

66.7%

Italian

33.3%

Senior Application Support Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

18.2%

New York University

6.1%

Wilmington University

6.1%

University of Massachusetts - Lowell

6.1%

Highland Community College

6.1%

University of Pennsylvania

6.1%

University of Central Oklahoma

6.1%

Oakland Community College

6.1%

Florida International University

6.1%

University of Dayton

3.0%

Pfeiffer University

3.0%

Santa Ana College

3.0%

Alcorn State University

3.0%

Saint Petersburg College

3.0%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

3.0%

Cecil Community College

3.0%

University of North Texas

3.0%

National University

3.0%

Butler University

3.0%

ITT Technical Institute-Knoxville

3.0%
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Majors

Business

17.8%

Computer Science

14.4%

Computer Information Systems

10.0%

Information Technology

8.9%

Management Information Systems

6.7%

Accounting

5.6%

Management

4.4%

Project Management

3.3%

Finance

3.3%

Electrical Engineering

3.3%

Public Health

2.2%

Design And Visual Communication

2.2%

Journalism And Mass Communications

2.2%

Marketing

2.2%

Computer Systems Security

2.2%

Engineering

2.2%

Computer Networking

2.2%

Information Systems

2.2%

Computer Programming

2.2%

Social Work

2.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

46.2%

Masters

20.5%

Other

20.5%

Associate

7.7%

Certificate

4.3%

Diploma

0.9%
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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Senior Application Support Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Application Developer/Support Specialist Citco Technology Management, Inc. Jersey City, NJ Jan 17, 2016 $134,000
Senior Application Support Specialist Barclays Services Corp. New York, NY Jun 08, 2015 $122,000 -
$148,000
Senior Application Support Specialist Barclays Services Corp. New York, NY Sep 02, 2015 $122,000 -
$148,000
Senior Applications Developer/Support Specialist Citco Technology Management Incorporated Jersey City, NJ Jan 17, 2013 $120,000
SR. Application Support Specialist Sepracor, Inc. Marlborough, MA Nov 30, 2010 $115,868
SR Application Support Specialist-Commercial Applications Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. Marlborough, MA Feb 23, 2015 $115,000
Senior Application Support Specialist-Commercial Applications Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. Marlborough, MA Mar 28, 2016 $115,000
Senior Applications Developer/Support Specialist Citco Technology Management Incorporated Jersey City, NJ Sep 19, 2010 $115,000
Senior Applications Support Specialist Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. Marlborough, MA Aug 26, 2016 $113,526
Senior Application Support Specialist Open Systems Technologies Inc. Jersey City, NJ Aug 30, 2010 $110,000
SR. Application Support Specialist, Equity Derivatives Barclays Services Corp New York, NY Jun 11, 2015 $109,000
Senior Application Support Specialist-ETL Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. Marlborough, MA Sep 11, 2012 $105,734
SR Application Support Specialist-G&A Applications Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. Marlborough, MA Mar 16, 2015 $105,000
Senior Application Support Specialist Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Marlborough, MA Mar 26, 2012 $105,000
Senior Application Support Specialist Sepracor, Inc. Marlborough, MA Sep 20, 2010 $105,000
Senior Application Support Specialist (ETL) Sepracor Marlborough, MA Dec 03, 2009 $103,459
Senior Application Support Specialist (ETL) Sepracor Marlborough, MA Jun 23, 2010 $103,459
SR. Application Production Support Specialist Idexcel, Inc. Reston, VA Aug 17, 2016 $91,828
Senior Application Support Specialist Laureate Education, Inc. Baltimore, MD Jul 21, 2015 $88,587
Senior Application Support Specialist Agentrics, LLC Alexandria, VA Jun 01, 2010 $85,000
SR. Application Support Specialist Orion Health, Inc. Boston, MA Oct 01, 2012 $80,000
Senior Application/Systems Support Specialist Thomson Reuters (Markets) LLC New York, NY Jan 06, 2014 $76,690
Senior Application/Systems Support Specialist Thomson Reuters (Markets) LLC New York, NY May 10, 2014 $76,690
Senior Application Support Specialist Amdocs Inc. Bothell, WA Dec 26, 2012 $73,830
Senior Application Support Specialist Amdocs Inc. Bothell, WA Aug 23, 2012 $73,830

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Top Skills for A Senior Application Support Specialist

  1. Application Support
  2. SQL
  3. Database
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Provided application support and guidance, which may include service packs, upgrades, and infrastructure.
  • Performed daily maintenance, support on 4 MS SQL Servers and CD Jukebox, as well as 2 test servers.
  • Worked on transitioning proprietary Fixed Income and Equities trading groups from a legacy database onto strategic new architecture database.
  • Developed Stored Procedures that replaced repetitive SQL queries to develop periodic reports on business applications.
  • Support for business issues and problems and developing solutions for Bill messages and inserts setup and O&M billing setup.

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Top 10 Best States for Senior Application Support Specialists

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Massachusetts
  3. Delaware
  4. Alaska
  5. Rhode Island
  6. New Jersey
  7. Virginia
  8. Minnesota
  9. Connecticut
  10. Colorado
  • (536 jobs)
  • (1,294 jobs)
  • (146 jobs)
  • (123 jobs)
  • (162 jobs)
  • (1,060 jobs)
  • (1,830 jobs)
  • (871 jobs)
  • (424 jobs)
  • (813 jobs)

Top Senior Application Support Specialist Employers

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