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Become A Service Desk Agent

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Working As A Service Desk Agent

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $87,792

    Average Salary

What Does A Service Desk Agent 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 Service Desk Agent

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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Service Desk Agent Jobs

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Service Desk Agent Career Paths

Service Desk Agent
Systems Administrator Engineer Project Engineer
Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Subject Matter Expert Team Manager Technical Support Specialist
Help Desk Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Network Engineer Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Service Desk Analyst Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Service Desk Analyst Level Senior Technician Systems Administrator
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Network Engineer Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Support Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Technical Support Specialist
Level Senior Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Services Desk Technician Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Services Desk Technician Service Desk Analyst Systems Administrator
Senior Network Administrator
6 Yearsyrs
Service Desk Team Lead Service Desk Supervisor Help Desk Manager
Senior Support Analyst
6 Yearsyrs
Service Desk Team Lead Service Desk Manager Information Technology Consultant
Senior Support Technician
5 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Senior Systems Engineer Technical Analyst
Senior Technical Analyst
7 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Technical Support Technician Technical Support Specialist
Senior Technical Support Specialist
5 Yearsyrs
Desktop Support Technician Information Technology Specialist Information Technology Project Manager
Service Delivery Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Desktop Support Technician Network Technician Systems Analyst
Systems Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Systems Analyst Lead Technician
Technical Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Subject Matter Expert Information Technology Specialist Network Manager
Technical Services Manager
7 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Service Desk Agent?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Help Desk Analyst 2.1 years
Service Desk Agent 2.0 years
Help Desk Agent 1.5 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 4.8%
Internship 4.2%
Supervisor 3.9%
Technician 3.6%
Agent 2.7%
Top Employers After
Agent 3.8%
Owner 3.3%
Manager 3.3%

Do you work as a Service Desk Agent?

Service Desk Agent Demographics

Gender

Male

69.9%

Female

27.0%

Unknown

3.1%
Ethnicity

White

59.6%

Hispanic or Latino

17.7%

Black or African American

10.7%

Asian

8.6%

Unknown

3.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

72.7%

German

13.6%

Portuguese

4.5%

Icelandic

4.5%

Hungarian

4.5%
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Service Desk Agent Education

Schools

ECPI University

14.9%

University of Phoenix

9.5%

University of Maryland - University College

6.8%

ITT Technical Institute-Troy

5.4%

Alabama State University

5.4%

Boise State University

5.4%

Central Texas College

4.1%

Weber State University

4.1%

American University

4.1%

Texas State University

4.1%

Strayer University

4.1%

Kaplan University

4.1%

Fountainhead College of Technology

4.1%

Salt Lake Community College

4.1%

Texas A&M University

4.1%

Metropolitan State University of Denver

4.1%

Oakland Community College

4.1%

ITT Technical Institute-Dearborn

2.7%

St. Philip's College

2.7%

Western Governors University

2.7%
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Majors

Business

14.8%

Computer Information Systems

14.1%

Information Technology

13.4%

Computer Science

12.3%

Computer Networking

9.7%

Information Systems

3.6%

Computer Systems Security

3.6%

Communication

3.2%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.9%

Electrical Engineering

2.9%

Management

2.5%

Criminal Justice

2.5%

Psychology

2.5%

Management Information Systems

2.2%

Information Sciences

2.2%

General Studies

1.8%

Nursing

1.4%

Computer Programming

1.4%

Music

1.4%

Political Science

1.4%
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Degrees

Bachelors

41.4%

Other

23.3%

Associate

22.5%

Masters

6.1%

Certificate

4.6%

Diploma

1.8%

Doctorate

0.3%
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Top Skills for A Service Desk Agent

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  1. Remote Access
  2. Computer
  3. Technical Support
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Provided telephone and email support for clients via step-by-step instructions, or using remote access software.
  • Gained experience in customer service and computer networking.
  • Dispatched technical support specialists from the appropriate teams when necessary
  • Used Microsoft Forefront Identity Manager to manipulate various Active Directory OU objects.
  • Collaborate with regional Service Desks to provide global support and communicate service related matters.

How Would You Rate Working As a Service Desk Agent?

Are you working as a Service Desk Agent? Help us rate Service Desk Agent as a Career.

Top Service Desk Agent Employers

Jobs From Top Service Desk Agent Employers

Service Desk Agent Videos

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TATA Consultancy Services – IT Service Desk Agent

Front Desk Agent (Resort), Career Video from drkit.org

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