Become a PC Repair Technician
A personal computer (PC) repair technician identifies problems with computers and makes necessary repairs. The technician might fix hardware or software problems, guide users through troubleshooting procedures or work on computers remotely. Most of these professionals are employed at private businesses and companies. Travel to clients' homes for repair may be a requirement of the job. Holiday, weekend and evening hours also may be needed to meet consumer demand.
Program Level | Certificate or associate's degree
|Degree Field||Electronics or similar computer-related field|
|Licensure and Certification||Voluntary certification such as A+, Microsoft, or Cisco|
|Training||On-the-job training sometimes provided|
|Key Skills||Good analytical, communication and customer service skills, knowledge of web platform development, enterprise application integration, and operating systems software; ability to install, maintain, fix, and troubleshoot hardware and software|
|Salary (2106)*||$35,421 per year (median salary for PC repair technicians)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, (May, 2014), PayScale.com*
Becoming a PC repair technician usually requires a certificate or associate's degree and on-the-job training from experienced workers may be provided in some cases. Key skills you need to have include good analytical, communication and customer service skills, and knowledge of web platform development, enterprise application integration and operating systems software. Also required is the ability to maintain, fix, and troubleshoot hardware and software problems, as well as install software and hardware. As of July 2016, the median salary for PC repair technicians was $35,421, notes Payscale.com.
Career Steps to Take
Let's now go through each of the steps needed to become a PC repair technician.
Step 1: Complete a Postsecondary Program
Postsecondary programs, such as a certificate in computer repair technology or an associate's degree in PC maintenance technology, can help technicians develop basic skills. These programs also can prepare students for pursuing industry certification, which may be preferred by employers. Training generally addresses computer hardware and software, networking, operating systems, hard drive backup, digital logistics and computer accessories. Graduates should also able to install, upgrade and troubleshoot computers.
Step 2: Get Experience
Most employers require some experience in a computer-related field for an entry-level position in PC repair. Employers prefer applicants who have technical experience troubleshooting problems in hardware and software, knowledge of different operating systems and the ability to help others diagnose computer problems. Working in customer support or with a help desk can provide a solid background for an aspiring PC repair technician.
Step 3: Advance Your Career By Earning Professional Certification
Voluntary certification, such as A+, Microsoft or Cisco may be preferred by specific employers. In some instances, certification can substitute for advanced education. Obtaining certification also helps technicians stay current and demonstrates continuing competence in a rapidly changing field.
To review, PC repair technicians typically need a certificate or associate's degree, along with previous work experience in a computer-related field.