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.
Most computer support specialists have full-time work schedules; however, many do not work typical 9-to-5 jobs. Because computer support is important for businesses, many support specialists must be available 24 hours a day. As a result, many support specialists must work nights or weekends.
How to Become a Computer 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.
Employment of computer support specialists is projected to grow 12 percent from 2014 to 2024, faster than the average for all occupations. More support services will be needed as organizations upgrade their computer equipment and software.
This occupation supported 722,300 jobs in 2012 and 766,900 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 6.2%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 17.0% in 2022 to 845,300 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 746,900, compared with an observed value of 766,900, 2.7% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are better than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 12.3% in 2024 to 855,600 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 869,900 jobs for 2024, 1.7% higher than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are about on track with the 2012 trend within this occupation.