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Become A Service Support Specialist

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Working As A Service Support Specialist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $69,430

    Average Salary

What Does A Service 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 Service 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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Service Support Specialist jobs

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Service Support Specialist Career Paths

Service Support Specialist
Business Analyst Program Manager General Manager
Account Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Owner/Operator Sales Consultant Recruiter
Director Of Human Resources
10 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Owner/Operator Consultant Information Technology Manager
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Service Manager General Manager
District Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Operations Specialist Operations Manager
General Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Service Manager Operations Manager
Human Resources Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Network Engineer Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Network Engineer Network Administrator
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Product Manager Marketing Manager
Marketing Director
7 Yearsyrs
General Manager Account Manager Account Executive
Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Project Manager Program Manager
Operations Director
9 Yearsyrs
General Manager Account Executive Sales Manager
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Service Manager General Manager Operations Director
President Of Operations
11 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Operations Specialist Project Manager Program Manager
Senior Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Information Technology Manager Director Of Information
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Staff Specialist 3.7 years
Senior Specialist 3.6 years
MIS Specialist 3.3 years
Systems Support 3.1 years
Support Lead 2.7 years
Service Specialist 2.7 years
Specialist 2.5 years
Data Specialist 2.5 years
Support Specialist 2.3 years
Support Analyst 2.3 years
Support Associate 2.0 years
Support 2.0 years
Service Desk Agent 1.7 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 6.5%
Specialist 3.4%
Manager 3.2%
Associate 2.7%
Technician 2.7%
Top Employers After
Manager 3.9%
Cashier 3.7%

Service Support Specialist Demographics

Gender

Female

54.1%

Male

43.5%

Unknown

2.4%
Ethnicity

White

78.3%

Hispanic or Latino

11.7%

Asian

7.1%

Unknown

2.2%

Black or African American

0.7%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

67.3%

French

7.7%

Portuguese

5.8%

Khmer

1.9%

Chinese

1.9%

German

1.9%

Cantonese

1.9%

Carrier

1.9%

Cebuano

1.9%

Tagalog

1.9%

Mandarin

1.9%

Arabic

1.9%

Breton

1.9%
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Service Support Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

30.7%

Strayer University

7.3%

Northern Virginia Community College

6.0%

Ashford University

4.7%

University of Nebraska at Omaha

4.0%

George Mason University

4.0%

University of North Carolina at Charlotte

4.0%

Pima Community College

3.3%

Arizona State University

3.3%

Texas State University

3.3%

Cleveland State University

3.3%

Liberty University

3.3%

Capella University

3.3%

Saint Cloud State University

3.3%

University of Tennessee - Knoxville

2.7%

University of North Florida

2.7%

University of Toledo

2.7%

University of Central Oklahoma

2.7%

Walden University

2.7%

University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

2.7%
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Majors

Business

28.7%

Information Technology

6.7%

Psychology

6.6%

Computer Science

5.9%

Computer Information Systems

5.1%

Accounting

4.8%

Human Resources Management

4.3%

Management

3.8%

Communication

3.8%

Electrical Engineering

3.4%

Criminal Justice

3.4%

Education

3.0%

Finance

3.0%

Computer Networking

3.0%

Health Care Administration

2.8%

General Studies

2.6%

Nursing

2.6%

Marketing

2.5%

Political Science

2.3%

English

2.0%
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Degrees

Bachelors

39.4%

Other

25.6%

Associate

16.0%

Masters

12.0%

Certificate

5.5%

Diploma

0.9%

License

0.3%

Doctorate

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Service Support Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Apr 27, 2016 $101,525
Financial Markets, Product Support, Service Support Specialist Standard Chartered Bank New York, NY Oct 25, 2016 $95,000 -
$115,000
Client Services & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. New York, NY Nov 03, 2014 $85,000
Client Services and Support Specialist II Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Oct 01, 2015 $82,534 -
$85,864
Client Service and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA May 01, 2015 $82,534 -
$85,000
Client Service and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Jan 05, 2015 $82,534 -
$85,000
Client Service and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. San Francisco, CA Aug 26, 2016 $80,000
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Feb 18, 2016 $78,000 -
$85,000
Client Services & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. New York, NY Mar 12, 2012 $78,000
Client Services & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. New York, NY Dec 03, 2012 $78,000
Client Services & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Oct 01, 2011 $77,250 -
$82,400
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Sep 04, 2014 $76,000 -
$80,000
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA May 12, 2014 $76,000 -
$80,000
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Jun 30, 2014 $76,000 -
$80,000
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Sep 16, 2013 $76,000 -
$77,008
Client Service and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. New York, NY Jan 09, 2016 $75,000
Client Services and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Aug 04, 2015 $72,000 -
$78,000
Client Service and Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. San Francisco, CA Sep 16, 2016 $70,000
Client Services & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics, Inc. New York, NY Aug 01, 2015 $70,000
Client Services & Support Specialist (Associate) Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Oct 01, 2010 $70,000 -
$80,000
Client Service & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Jul 27, 2009 $70,000
Client Services & Support Specialist Moody's Analytics San Francisco, CA Oct 01, 2010 $69,430 -
$75,000

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Top Skills for A Service Support Specialist

CustomerServiceProceduresTechnicalSupportEmailHardwareTechnicalAssistanceTroubleshootRemoteOnlinePhoneCallsPayrollDataEntryEnsureCustomerSatisfactionActiveDirectoryCompanyPoliciesSetupInternalStaffAuditCustomerIssuesCustomerSupport

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Top Service Support Specialist Skills

  1. Customer Service
  2. Procedures
  3. Technical Support
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Work to deliver exceptional customer service in a call center environment.
  • Maintained department Policy and Procedures.
  • Perform general LAN technical support tasks as well as installing and configuring hardware and network interface cards.
  • Provide pricing and delivery information upon request via email, phone, or fax depending on staffing levels.
  • Analyzed diagnosed, documented and corrected hardware and software errors.

Top Service Support Specialist Employers