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IT support technicians, also known as support techs or IT support staff, help to detect and fix software and hardware problems for computer users.

As a technician, you might find yourself working in-house for a large corporation, or being deployed off-site site to service a variety of locations. You may even work remotely by phone, email, or even through web-based remote access applications.

Your daily duties would typically include the following:

  • discussing with clients the exact nature of a problem
  • searching for solutions to the given problem at hand
  • working out the reasons for said problem and explaining them to the client
  • fixing desktop computers, servers, and their related peripherals
  • installing and setting up new computer systems
  • upgrading and/or decommissioning existing systems
  • testing and servicing computer equipment
  • recording faults and their associated solutions for future reference (i.e. knowledgebase)
  • training clients on new systems and their related software applications.

You may work as part of a team within a company, or support outside commercial clients either on-site, off-site, or both.

What qualifications and experience are required for this job?

Employers look for a wide variety of skills and competencies. A basic secondary school education is generally a prerequisite. You may be able start as a trainee technician if you have a good working knowledge of computer systems. You could, however, improve your prospects by gaining IT qualifications/certifications such as any of the following:

  • BTEC National Certificate/Diploma for IT Practitioners (ICT Systems Support) Level 3
  • NCFE Certificate for IT Practitioners (General) Level 2
  • OCR (iPRO) Certificate for IT Practitioners (ICT Systems Support) Level 3.
  • City & Guilds (E-Quals) IT Practitioners Diploma/Advanced Diploma (7266) Level 3

These courses contain optional units taken from Cisco, CompTIA, and Microsoft certifications. A large variety of online certifications are available from commercial vendors. See which ones are popular and widely recognized by employers in your area before studying for them.

Unless you are working in an isolated lab situation, this career requires careful attention to customer service. It helps to have to have a clear, professional speaking voice (i.e., especially if providing telephone service), friendly attitude, and a huge amount of patience for those less technically inclined than yourself.

You may even be able to start out your IT Technician career through an apprenticeship. The range of apprenticeships available in your area depends on your local jobs market and the types of skills employers need. Visit websites such as for more information.

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