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When people say support specialist, they generally mean an expert who supports organizations or clients with IT issues, troubleshooting and resolving any problem related to hardware, software, networks, and the like.

You will most likely receive calls and emails from frustrated and panicky computer users who have already tried turning it on and off again. You will need all your patience and communication skills to figure out what went wrong and walk them through the process to fix it.

This is a typical 9-to-5 job with salaries usually ranging somewhere between a generous sum of $40,000 to $60,000 per year. You do not necessarily have to have degrees and certificates to prove your knowledge in information technology. The results of a proficiency test are normally sufficient to speak for your skills.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a support specialist. For example, did you know that they make an average of $21.42 an hour? That's $44,547 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 10% and produce 83,100 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Support Specialist Do

There are certain skills that many support specialists have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed customer-service skills, listening skills and speaking skills.

Learn more about what a Support Specialist does

How To Become a Support Specialist

If you're interested in becoming a support specialist, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 51.8% of support specialists have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 7.5% of support specialists have master's degrees. Even though most support specialists have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a support specialist. When we researched the most common majors for a support specialist, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on support specialist resumes include high school diploma degrees or master's degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a support specialist. In fact, many support specialist jobs require experience in a role such as customer service representative. Meanwhile, many support specialists also have previous career experience in roles such as cashier or administrative assistant.

Support Specialist Career Paths

Average Salary for a Support Specialist

Support Specialists in America make an average salary of $44,547 per year or $21 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $71,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $27,000 per year.
Average Support Specialist Salary
$44,547 Yearly
$21.42 hourly
$27,000
10 %
$44,000
Median
$71,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Support Specialist Education

Support Specialist Majors

24.5 %

Support Specialist Degrees

Bachelors

51.8 %

Associate

22.4 %

High School Diploma

10.6 %

Top Colleges for Support Specialists

1. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

2. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

3. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

4. Maine Maritime Academy

Castine, ME • Private

In-State Tuition
$13,478
Enrollment
979

5. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

6. California State University - Bakersfield

Bakersfield, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,309
Enrollment
9,142

7. SUNY at Binghamton

Vestal, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,808
Enrollment
13,990

8. Villanova University

Villanova, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,308
Enrollment
6,819

9. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

10. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

Top Skills For a Support Specialist

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 14.2% of support specialists listed customer service on their resume, but soft skills such as customer-service skills and listening skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Support Specialist Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Support Specialist templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Support Specialist resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Support Specialist Demographics

Support Specialist Gender Distribution

Female
Female
62%
Male
Male
38%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among support specialists, 61.6% of them are women, while 38.4% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among support specialists is White, which makes up 60.3% of all support specialists.

  • The most common foreign language among support specialists is Spanish at 68.3%.

Online Courses For Support Specialist That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Technical Support Fundamentals
coursera

This course is the first of a series that aims to prepare you for a role as an entry-level IT Support Specialist. In this course, you'll be introduced to the world of Information Technology, or IT. You'll learn about the different facets of Information Technology, like computer hardware, the Internet, computer software, troubleshooting, and customer service. This course covers a wide variety of topics in IT that are designed to give you an overview of what's to come in this certificate program...

IT & Technical Support Guide to Helpdesk, Desktop & Servers
udemy
4.2
(916)

Learn how the different levels of IT technical support work, from service desk to infrastructure and server support...

Customer Service, Customer Support, And Customer Experience
udemy
4.4
(282)

Customer service, customer support, and customer experience training. Loyal clients through world-class customer service...

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Best States For a Support Specialist

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a support specialist. The best states for people in this position are New Jersey, Texas, New York, and Connecticut. Support specialists make the most in New Jersey with an average salary of $59,608. Whereas in Texas and New York, they would average $59,214 and $59,180, respectively. While support specialists would only make an average of $58,603 in Connecticut, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. District of Columbia

Total Support Specialist Jobs:
429
Highest 10% Earn:
$95,000
Location Quotient:
1.71 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Oklahoma

Total Support Specialist Jobs:
532
Highest 10% Earn:
$87,000
Location Quotient:
1.16 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Texas

Total Support Specialist Jobs:
2,620
Highest 10% Earn:
$96,000
Location Quotient:
0.87 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Support Specialists

How Do Support Specialist Rate Their Jobs?

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3.0

Habilitation SpecialistFebruary 2020

3.0

Zippia Official LogoHabilitation SpecialistFebruary 2020

What do you like the most about working as Support Specialist?

Helping special needs adults read , write and do math. Show More

What do you NOT like?

Lifting wheelchair bound individuals to change pull ups and pampers, cleaning bowel movements. No support from leadership when problems arrive. Over crowding classrooms which causes stress to staff and individuals. Show More

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Top Support Specialist Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ support specialists and discovered their number of support specialist opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that J. C. Penney was the best, especially with an average salary of $35,983. Michaels Stores follows up with an average salary of $31,494, and then comes Bank of America with an average of $69,388. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a support specialist. The employers include Choice Hotels, iland Cloud, and EAB

Most Common Employers For Support Specialist

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Citi$97,542$46.90148
2JPMorgan Chase & Co.$78,821$37.89244
3IBM$78,453$37.72170
4Intuit$73,204$35.19152
5Bank of America$69,388$33.36608
6AT&T$62,684$30.14162
7Mercury Insurance$49,469$23.78146
8alternatives$44,547$21.42109
9Hewlett Packard Enterprise$43,563$20.94115
10Robert Half$42,971$20.66106

Becoming a Support Specialist FAQs

How long does it take to become a Support Specialist?

It takes 5 years of professional experience to become a support specialist. That is the time it takes to learn specific support specialist skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 8 to 10 years years to become a support specialist.

Do you need a degree to be an IT support specialist?

Yes, you need a degree to be an IT support specialist. Many IT support specialists can get hired with only an associate's degree, although some employers prefer applicants with a bachelor's degree.

What are the duties of an IT support specialist?

The duties of an IT support specialist are to provide organizations with information technology support to optimize operational efficiency. Their responsibilities include resolving technical issues, maintaining hardware and software installations, and improving IT systems.

What does a computer support specialist do?

A computer support specialist provides technical support for a company, organization's customers, or their fellow staff members. The computer support specialist will use computer software and equipment to assist them in providing advice and help to their employer and fellow employees.

What makes a good IT support specialist?

What makes a good IT support specialist is the ability to proactively solve problems involving various hardware and software products a business utilizes or produces. This job is primarily focused on fixing issues and making sure that technology is working correctly.

What qualifications do you need to be a computer support specialist?

The qualifications you need to be a computer support specialist are an associate's degree in computer science and some work experience. Typically companies prefer to hire people with a bachelor's degree and deep knowledge of various computer programs.

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