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Average Wages

Computer User Support Specialists


Industry Outlook

Career outlook is: excellent for the next 12-18 months

Job Description

Provide technical assistance to computer users. Answer questions or resolve computer problems for clients in person, or via telephone or electronically. May provide assistance concerning the use of computer hardware and software, including printing, installation, word processing, electronic mail, and operating systems.


Also known as:
Computer Specialist, Computer Support Specialist, Computer Technician, Technical Support Specialist, Desktop Support Technician, Help Desk Technician, Support Specialist, Help Desk Analyst, Network Technician, Information Technology Specialist (IT Specialist)

Average Career Wages

Co-Op / Internship

Securing an internship for this position is a good way in which to understand the expectations required for full time employment.

Typical Job Tasks

  • Provide technical support for software maintenance or use.
  • Monitor computer system performance to ensure proper operation.
  • Collaborate with others to resolve information technology issues.
  • Resolve computer software problems.
  • Read documents to gather technical information.


  • Install computer hardware.
  • Teach others to use computer equipment or hardware.
  • Train others in computer interface or software use.
  • Modify software programs to improve performance.
  • Test software performance.
  • Test computer hardware performance.
  • Document operational activities.
  • Install computer software.
  • Maintain computer hardware.
  • Recommend changes to improve computer or information systems.
  • Evaluate utility of software or hardware technologies.
  • Provide recommendations to others about computer hardware.
  • Collaborate with others to determine design specifications or details.
  • Conduct research to gain information about products or processes.
  • Update knowledge about emerging industry or technology trends.
  • Participate in staffing decisions.
  • Supervise information technology personnel.


Required Skills

People in this career often have these skills:
  • Speaking – Talking to others.
  • Reading Comprehension – Reading work-related information.
  • Active Listening – Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
  • Critical Thinking – Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
  • Complex Problem Solving – Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.


  • Writing – Writing things for co-workers or customers.
  • Judgment and Decision Making – Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.


Projected Employment Numbers


2016 Employment

2026 Employment

Percent change

Annual projected job openings

What Experience and Education do you Require?

Individuals in this field typically have:

  1.  Some college, no degree
  2.  No work experience
  3.  No on-the-job training

Typical Education Level Required

Background Knowledge

People in this career often know a lot about:
  • Computers and Electronics – Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Customer and Personal Service – Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language – Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Telecommunications – Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

Successful people in this career have ...

  • Oral Expression – Communicating by speaking.
  • Written Comprehension – Reading and understanding what is written.
  • Oral Comprehension – Listening and understanding what people say.
  • Near Vision – Seeing details up close.
  • Speech Clarity – Speaking clearly.
  • Information Ordering – Ordering or arranging things.


  • Speech Recognition – Recognizing spoken words.
  • Deductive Reasoning – Using rules to solve problems.
  • Written Expression – Communicating by writing.
  • Problem Sensitivity – Noticing when problems happen.