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Become A Software Support Technician

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Working As A Software Support Technician

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • $79,330

    Average Salary

What Does A Software Support Technician 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 Software Support Technician

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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Software Support Technician jobs

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Software Support Technician Career Paths

Software Support Technician
Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager Director Of Information
Chief Information Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Consultant Network Administrator Director Of Information
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Project Manager Senior Manager
Director Of Sales
10 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager
General Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Desktop Support Technician Help Desk Specialist Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Information Systems Technician Systems Administrator Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Consultant Senior Consultant Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Infrastructure Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Systems Administrator Network Engineer Network Administrator
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Specialist Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Manager
Infrastructure Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Systems Engineer Project Manager Program Manager
Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Network Administrator Systems Engineer Project Engineer
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Systems Administrator Business Analyst
Product Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Consultant Senior Consultant Product Manager
Sales Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Desktop Support Technician Systems Engineer Operations Manager
Senior Account Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Network Administrator Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Senior Project Manager
Senior Product Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Information Systems Technician Technical Support Specialist Systems Engineer
Senior Software Engineer
6 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Manager Business Development Manager Solution Specialist
Solutions Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Network Technician Network Administrator Director Of Information
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
System Technician 4.4 years
Systems Specialist 4.2 years
Digital Technician 3.5 years
Computer Analyst 3.3 years
Systems Engineer 3.2 years
Systems Support 3.1 years
Network Technician 3.1 years
PC Support Analyst 3.0 years
LAN Technician 2.7 years
Support Lead 2.7 years
PC Analyst 2.7 years
MIS Technician 2.7 years
Software Trainer 2.6 years
Technician 2.6 years
Desktop Engineer 2.6 years
On-Site Technician 2.4 years
Support Specialist 2.3 years
Support Analyst 2.3 years
Computer Assistant 2.2 years
Server Technician 2.1 years
Help Desk Analyst 2.1 years
Support Associate 2.0 years
Support 2.0 years
POS Technician 1.9 years
Software Installer 1.9 years
Help Desk Engineer 1.8 years
Service Desk Agent 1.7 years
Junior Technician 1.6 years
Student Technician 1.6 years
Top Employers Before
Consultant 5.7%
Internship 4.1%
Top Employers After
Consultant 8.9%
Owner 3.2%
Manager 3.0%

Software Support Technician Demographics

Gender

Male

71.0%

Female

27.0%

Unknown

2.0%
Ethnicity

White

76.7%

Asian

9.8%

Hispanic or Latino

9.8%

Unknown

2.8%

Black or African American

0.9%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

48.5%

French

12.1%

Portuguese

6.1%

Russian

3.8%

Italian

3.8%

Carrier

3.8%

Chinese

3.8%

Mandarin

3.0%

Arabic

3.0%

Vietnamese

2.3%

Cheyenne

1.5%

Cantonese

1.5%

German

1.5%

Swedish

0.8%

Swahili

0.8%

Romanian

0.8%

Korean

0.8%

Hawaiian

0.8%

Ukrainian

0.8%

Kazakh

0.8%
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Software Support Technician Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

21.8%

Southern New Hampshire University

6.4%

Monroe Community College

5.5%

Kaplan University

5.5%

More Tech Institute

4.5%

Western Governors University

4.5%

Strayer University

4.5%

Temple University

4.1%

Colorado Technical University

4.1%

Villanova University

3.6%

University of North Texas

3.6%

University of Maryland - University College

3.6%

Webster University

3.6%

University of Iowa

3.6%

University of Houston

3.6%

Western Washington University

3.6%

American InterContinental University

3.6%

Capella University

3.6%

Columbus State Community College

3.2%

Northwestern University

3.2%
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Majors

Computer Science

17.2%

Business

17.1%

Computer Information Systems

11.7%

Information Technology

8.9%

Computer Networking

5.1%

Information Systems

4.6%

Electrical Engineering

4.4%

Computer Engineering

3.6%

Accounting

3.5%

Management

3.1%

Management Information Systems

2.6%

Education

2.4%

Criminal Justice

2.3%

Project Management

2.1%

Liberal Arts

2.0%

Communication

1.9%

Psychology

1.9%

Computer Programming

1.9%

Finance

1.9%

Health Care Administration

1.7%
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Degrees

Bachelors

40.2%

Other

22.5%

Masters

16.3%

Associate

13.6%

Certificate

4.6%

Diploma

1.6%

Doctorate

1.1%

License

0.1%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Software Support Technician Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Support Consultant V Sap America, Inc. Newtown, PA Mar 01, 2015 $157,463
Production Services Information Technology Support Consultan AIG Technologies, Inc. Charlotte, NC Feb 24, 2016 $125,000
Production Services IT Support Consultant Lead AIG PC Global Services, Inc. Charlotte, NC Sep 11, 2015 $125,000
Production Services Information Technology Support Consultan AIG PC Global Services, Inc. Charlotte, NC Nov 11, 2015 $125,000
Production Services IT Support Consultant II AIG Technologies, Inc. Charlotte, NC Feb 29, 2016 $125,000
Production Services IT Support Consultant AIG Technologies, Inc. Charlotte, NC Mar 14, 2016 $125,000
Consultant Support Systems HSBC Bank USA, N.A. Depew, NY Mar 11, 2015 $123,739
Support Consultant Sap America, Inc. Newtown, PA Aug 26, 2014 $121,606
Support Consultant Sap America, Inc. Newtown, PA Jan 02, 2016 $117,225
Support Consultant Sap America, Inc. Plymouth, MI Jan 20, 2014 $116,150
Support Consultant Sap America, Inc. Newtown, PA Apr 15, 2013 $116,150
Software Applications Support Paradigm Geophysical Corporation Houston, TX Aug 18, 2016 $115,000
Software Applications Support III Paradigm Geophysical Corporation Houston, TX Sep 06, 2014 $115,000
Support Consultant V Sap America, Inc. Newtown, PA Mar 05, 2014 $113,958
Support Consultant Sap Labs, LLC Palo Alto, CA Jan 12, 2014 $93,324
Support Consultant Intergraph Corporation Madison, AL Sep 16, 2014 $93,184
Software Applications Support II-Formation Evaluation Paradigm Geophysical Corporation Houston, TX Sep 14, 2015 $92,534
Software Applications Support III-Formation Evaluation Paradigm Geophysical Corporation Houston, TX Sep 14, 2015 $92,534
Software Applications Support II-Formation Evaluation Paradigm Geophysical Corp. Houston, TX Nov 30, 2016 $92,534
Software Applications Support III Paradigm Geophysical Corporation Houston, TX Jun 03, 2013 $90,688 -
$100,000
Member Technical Support IV-Consultant-IT Quality Cellco Partnership Warren, NJ Feb 20, 2013 $90,459 -
$114,029
Senior Technical Support Consultant Aspen Technology, Inc. Houston, TX Apr 16, 2013 $77,171
Senior Technical Support Consultant Temenos USA, Inc. Malvern, PA May 18, 2016 $77,147
Senior Technical Support Consultant Aspen Technology, Inc. Houston, TX Sep 12, 2016 $76,991
Senior Technical Support Consultant Aspen Technology, Inc. Houston, TX Jul 09, 2016 $76,177
Global Markets Financial Technical Support Consult State Street Bank and Trust Company New York, NY Apr 04, 2013 $76,000 -
$125,000
Technical Support Consultant II Sap America, Inc. Lake Mary, FL Nov 01, 2013 $75,926
Field Technical Support Consultant Hewlett-Packard Company Alpharetta, GA Aug 23, 2015 $75,000 -
$98,375
Senior Technical Support Consultant Aspen Technology, Inc. Houston, TX Sep 04, 2015 $75,000

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Top Skills for A Software Support Technician

ComputerHardwareRemoteAccessPCDeskSupportDatabaseCustomerServiceTroubleshootEmailSetupSQLServerSoftwareSupportWebLaptopsWindowsXPInternetActiveDirectorySoftwareIssuesMacOSTechnicalIssues

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Top Software Support Technician Skills

  1. Computer Hardware
  2. Remote Access
  3. PC
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Support personal & business computer hardware and software issues
  • Provided remote access support to customers using remote assistance tools when issue could not be resolved over the phone.
  • Develop and maintain MAC/PC software standardized images.
  • Provided IT technical administration and application and network help desk support for Regional Homebuilders Associations.
  • Developed and implemented database conversions.

Top Software Support Technician Employers

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