Career Definition for a Computer Servicing and Repair Technician
Computer servicing and repair technicians maintain desktop and laptop computers by communicating with the computer user, performing diagnostic testing, and making repairs. They may detect and remove computer viruses, update software, install firewalls and security programs, upgrade computer memory, or connect and configure Internet and network connections. They may also set up newly purchased computers by connecting cables and hardware, installing software, and establishing Internet connections in a customer's home or office. Computer servicing and repair technicians may work as independent consultants, employees of shops, and companies specializing in computer repair, or as in-house tech support for companies in nearly every industry.
|Education||Associate degree or certification|
|Job Skills||Analytical skill, communication, mathematics, technical skill|
|Median Salary (2017)*||$37,710 (all automated teller, computer, and office machine repairers)|
|Job Growth (2016-2026)*||-2% (all automated teller, computer and office machine repairers)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Computer servicing and repair technology careers often require an associate degree or completion of a certificate program in computer technology or a related field, such as electronics. Some employers will accept a high school diploma or GED if applicants have worked in computer repair for at least one year.
CompTIA A+ certification is also is required by many employers. It is available for technicians with 500 hours of experience who pass two exams covering repair skills and practical knowledge (www.comptia.org).
Computer servicing and repair technicians must have strong analytical and problem-solving skills related to computer technology and electronics. In addition to expertise with computer hardware, they must have current knowledge of basic software packages and operating systems. Good communication and customer service skills and the ability to work under pressure are essential. Computer servicing and repair technicians must be organized and detail-oriented, with good eyesight and hand-dexterity.
Career Outlook and Economic Forecast
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov) expects a decline in growth in this field over the next several years. The BLS predicts a 2% decline for computer, automated teller, and office machine repairers over the 2016-2026 period. As of May 2017, the BLS reported that the median salary for computer repair technicians was $37,710 per year.
Alternate Career Options
Individuals pursuing a profession in computer servicing and repair may consider similar job fields including electrical systems or general maintenance and repair.
General Maintenance and Repair Worker
General maintenance and repair workers troubleshoot and service common machinery and heating, cooling, plumbing, and electrical system problems that don't require the services of a trained specialist such as a licensed electrician or plumber. They also handle household maintenance and repair tasks such as broken windows and paint jobs. Employers typically prefer candidates with a high school diploma; on-the-job training is common, as is completion of relevant postsecondary classes in math and electricity. Licensing and certification requirements vary depending on job responsibilities and locality. The BLS predicts that jobs in this field will increase 8% from 2016-2026; the median salary for this career was reported as $37,670 in 2017.
An electrician completes an apprenticeship program or technical school program and then earns a state license to install, maintain, and repair electrical systems. Electricians can work on residential or commercial jobs; the BLS reports that about 8% owned their own businesses in 2016. The BLS also reports that jobs for electricians are expected to increase 9% from 2016-2026. Electricians earned a median salary of $54,110 in 2017, per the BLS.