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Career Profile: What is a Network Support Technician?

Computer technician

The employment rate for network support technicians is projected to rise 11 percent by 2026, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics1. But what is a network support technician?

Network support technicians are professionals well-versed in computer technology who advise computer users and operate on computer networks. This means that they test and evaluate computer network systems for companies, businesses and clients, as well as perform regular maintenance and troubleshoot internet systems.

Network Support Technician Description

Network support technician job duties include:

  • Analyze and address descriptions of computer problems
  • Diagnose computer and network issues
  • 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 information to other team members and managers in the organization about what gives customers the most trouble and other concerns customers have

Network support technicians are familiar with many types of computer programs and services so they can fix and address problems as they arise. They are experts in file backup and restoration, data recovery and instructing new users on how to use a software program. Professionals in this field do much of their work by phone or email, describing and diagnosing issues to customers and clients.

Helpful Skills for Network Support Technician Jobs

Careers in the network support technician field can include in-person interactions with clients and their computers or over-the-phone communications where clients and Support Technicians converse to describe problems and fixes to each other. Other skills often required for this field include:

  • Customer service skills. Network support technicians often help people who are frustrated with the software or hardware they are trying to use. It is important to be patient and sympathetic with these customers.
  • Listening skills. Computer technicians 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. Network technicians must identify both simple and complex computer problems, analyze them and solve them.
  • Communication skills. Network support technicians 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 for real-time web chat interactions.

How to Become a Network Support Technician

Education requirements for network support technician jobs vary. While a vast knowledge of computer systems is required, many employers place value on prospective employees with associate’s degrees in computer sciences or network support roles.

Companies may also require their employees to receive certifications to validate knowledge of best practices, like those offered by the Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA). Getting certified can highlight your skills and enhance your credentials for computer technician support jobs. To stay up to date as technology constantly changes, many professionals in this field often seek continuing education opportunities throughout their career.

Network Support Technician Salary

Network support technicians usually work full-time, but they do not always work a typical 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule. Because computer services are so important, professionals in this field may find themselves working with 24-hour support teams, meaning they could work shifts at any point throughout the day.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics2, Network support technicians can make between $36,960 and $105,230 annually. The median annual wage for network support technicians was $62,340 in 2016.

The salaries for entry-level IT positions will vary based on experience, location of employment and the specific job title and duties being performed.

Interested in pursuing a career as a network support technician? Find out more about how with Brightwood College.

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Brightwood College does not guarantee employment or advancement.

1https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/computer-support-specialists.htm

2https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/computer-support-specialists.htm#tab-5