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Become A Senior Specialist

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Working As A Senior Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $104,700

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior 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 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 Specialist jobs

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Senior Specialist Career Paths

Senior Specialist
Program Manager Marketing Manager General Manager
Account Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Sales Manager Branch Manager
Assistant Vice President
7 Yearsyrs
Marketing Manager Senior Manager Director Of Information
Chief Information Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Assistant Vice President Human Resources Coordinator
Director Of Human Resources
10 Yearsyrs
Project Leader Business Analyst Information Technology Manager
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Marketing Manager Associate Director Director Of Information
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Account Manager Sales Manager
Director Of Sales
10 Yearsyrs
Program Manager General Manager
District Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Account Manager Account Executive Sales Manager
General Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Business Analyst Senior Consultant Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Manager Senior Project Manager Program Director
Operations Director
9 Yearsyrs
Assistant Vice President Project Manager Construction Manager
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Manager Operations Director
President Of Operations
11 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Consultant Senior Consultant
Program Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Business Analyst Product Manager Operations Manager
Purchasing Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Leader Program Manager Business Development Manager
Senior Account Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Senior Consultant
Senior Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Product Manager
Senior Product Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager
Senior Project Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Sales Manager Senior Manager Director Of Information
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Systems Specialist 4.2 years
Telecom Specialist 4.1 years
Senior Specialist 4.0 years
Staff Specialist 3.7 years
Senior Leader 3.5 years
EDI Specialist 3.4 years
Team Lead/Manager 3.3 years
Tool Specialist 3.2 years
Team Leader 3.0 years
Field Specialist 2.7 years
Service Specialist 2.7 years
Data Specialist 2.5 years
Project Specialist 2.5 years
Specialist 2.5 years
Site Leader 2.4 years
Technical Advisor 2.4 years
Support Specialist 2.3 years
Catalog Specialist 1.7 years
Top Employers Before
Specialist 13.7%
Consultant 5.8%
Manager 5.4%
Internship 4.1%
Supervisor 3.7%
Analyst 3.5%
Top Employers After
Consultant 8.6%
Manager 8.2%
Specialist 7.0%
Supervisor 3.9%
Analyst 3.7%

Senior Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

51.3%

Female

46.3%

Unknown

2.4%
Ethnicity

White

76.2%

Hispanic or Latino

10.8%

Asian

10.1%

Unknown

2.2%

Black or African American

0.7%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

44.0%

French

10.1%

Russian

5.7%

German

5.7%

Japanese

5.2%

Chinese

4.9%

Portuguese

4.4%

Mandarin

3.4%

Italian

2.7%

Korean

2.5%

Arabic

2.0%

Hindi

1.5%

Greek

1.2%

Swedish

1.0%

Vietnamese

1.0%

Cantonese

1.0%

Turkish

1.0%

Carrier

1.0%

Tagalog

1.0%

Persian

1.0%
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Senior Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

22.4%

Northeastern University

6.0%

Pennsylvania State University

5.6%

Boston University

5.2%

Strayer University

5.0%

Texas A&M University

4.4%

George Washington University

4.3%

University of Houston

4.2%

Arizona State University

4.2%

New York University

3.9%

Villanova University

3.8%

DePaul University

3.6%

American University

3.5%

Ashford University

3.5%

University of Texas at Austin

3.5%

Grand Canyon University

3.5%

University of Maryland - University College

3.5%

Liberty University

3.4%

Webster University

3.4%

University of Florida

3.2%
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Majors

Business

34.2%

Finance

6.8%

Accounting

6.0%

Computer Science

5.1%

Management

5.1%

Psychology

4.6%

Marketing

4.5%

Communication

4.2%

Criminal Justice

3.3%

Electrical Engineering

2.8%

Computer Information Systems

2.6%

Human Resources Management

2.5%

Health Care Administration

2.5%

Information Technology

2.5%

Nursing

2.4%

Political Science

2.3%

Biology

2.3%

Education

2.1%

Economics

2.1%

English

2.0%
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Degrees

Bachelors

42.2%

Masters

23.0%

Other

18.6%

Associate

8.0%

Certificate

4.3%

Doctorate

2.7%

Diploma

1.1%

License

0.3%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Senior Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior FX Specialist Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited New York, NY Sep 16, 2015 $230,000
Architect Senior Specialist Citigroup Technology, Inc. Jersey City, NJ Jun 29, 2015 $188,843
Senior Specialist Database Sapient Corporation Boston, MA Jan 27, 2016 $166,355
Senior Specialist Database Sapient Corporation New York, NY Feb 17, 2016 $166,355
Senior Specialist Platform Sapient Corporation Burlington, MA Jul 21, 2016 $165,600
Senior Specialist Platform Sapient Corporation New York, NY Dec 23, 2015 $165,600
Senior Specialist Platform Sapient Corporation Tucker, GA Mar 03, 2016 $165,600
Senior Specialist-Subsea Controls Wood Group Kenny, Inc. Houston, TX Apr 03, 2015 $163,093
Senior Specialist Platform Sapient Corporation Arlington, VA Feb 11, 2015 $162,000
Senior Specialist Platform Sapient Corporation Arlington, VA Feb 09, 2015 $162,000
Senior Specialist Database Sapient Corporation New York, NY Jun 01, 2015 $161,510
Senior Specialist Nokia Solutions and Networks Us LLC Arlington Heights, IL Jul 25, 2016 $155,936
Senior Specialist Platform Sapient Corporation Boston, MA Oct 24, 2016 $155,339
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP San Francisco, CA May 24, 2016 $102,357 -
$164,300
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP San Francisco, CA Jul 14, 2015 $102,357 -
$158,000
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Dallas, TX Jan 03, 2016 $102,253 -
$164,300
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Miami, FL Jan 03, 2016 $102,253 -
$164,300
Senior Specialist DW & Hana Analytics Sap America, Inc. Newtown, PA Feb 24, 2015 $101,872
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Atlanta, GA Feb 05, 2016 $101,525 -
$164,300
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Wallingford, CT Feb 05, 2016 $101,525 -
$164,300
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Mason, OH Feb 05, 2016 $101,525 -
$164,300
Senior Player Relations Specialist Riot Games Inc. Los Angeles, CA Aug 09, 2016 $96,750
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Collegeville, PA May 26, 2016 $96,500 -
$167,200
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Philadelphia, PA Sep 30, 2015 $96,400 -
$158,000
Senior Specialist KPMG LLP Dallas, TX Sep 25, 2016 $96,325 -
$120,000
Informatics Senior Specialist Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company Bloomfield, CT Sep 11, 2015 $96,212
Senior Pipeline Specialist (Engineer) Technip USA, Inc. Houston, TX Oct 01, 2015 $96,009
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Philadelphia, PA Jul 29, 2015 $96,000 -
$158,000
Specialist Senior Deloitte Consulting LLP Rome, GA Apr 14, 2015 $96,000 -
$158,000

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Top Skills for A Senior Specialist

ProceduresFinancialCustomerServiceDataEntryCompanyPoliciesSafetyRegulatoryRequirementsWebAuditWindowsAdditionalProjectManagementProcessImprovementTechnicalSupportManagementSystemSQLTroubleshootPhoneCallsPayrollSpecialProjects

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Top Senior Specialist Skills

  1. Procedures
  2. Financial
  3. Customer Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Train Coordinators on Processes/Procedures, assist with delegating projects and tasks among team
  • Led Unix systems and Oracle database team, supporting financial, people, project, and reporting applications globally.
  • Assisted front line representatives by educating them on the system, coaching new skills, and perfecting customer service.
  • Reviewed and scanned documents into the system for data entry.
  • Review and apply company policies and procedures to ensure consistency.

Top Senior Specialist Employers

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Senior Specialist Videos

A Day in the Life of Lucky Magazine's Social Media Guru Virginia Nam

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