Technical Support Engineer Career Advancement
Technical support engineers, also known as computer support specialists, typically have a bachelor's degree, as well as a natural aptitude for diagnosing and resolving a variety of technology-related issues. Their daily responsibilities include computer system troubleshooting, network evaluation, file maintenance, and more. This education and work experience can lead to several opportunities for advancement in the technology field. Four of these are discussed below.
|Job Title||Mean Annual Salary (2018)*||Job Growth (2016-26)*||Qualifications|
|Network and Computer Systems Administrator||$87,070||6%||Master's degree may be required|
|Computer Systems Analyst||$93,610||9%||MBA or master's in computer science may be required|
|Information Security Analyst||$102,470||28%||Related work experience; MBA in information systems may be required|
|Sales Engineer||$108,610||7%||Sales training; up-to-date knowledge of technology advancements|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
Network and Computer Systems Administrator
Technical support engineers looking for a next-step in their career may choose to focus their attention and skills on maintaining and troubleshooting computer networks. Technology experts who service networks and servers are known as network and computer systems administrators. They are responsible for the daily operation of a business's computer system, including its overall performance, security, and hardware/software maintenance. Most employers require a bachelor's degree in computer science or similar area, though some may prefer a master's degree. Network system administrators must also keep up with the ever-changing network technology.
Computer Systems Analyst
A technical support engineer with effective analytical and creative skills, as well as an understanding of how to connect business and technology, may seek advancement as a computer systems analyst. A computer systems analyst understands the needs of a business and designs a strategy for using the latest technology to meet those needs. Analyzing the cost and efficiency of new technology against existing computer system functionality is one aspect of this role. A computer systems analyst can also be responsible for installing hardware and software, testing new systems, and training users. A bachelor's degree in a computer-related field is a minimum requirement, though employers may prefer applicants with a master's degree, either in business administration (MBA) or computer science. A computer systems analyst may also need an understanding of their employer's specialized industry (for example, healthcare or banking) in order to best know how technology can enhance their business.
Information Security Analyst
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for information security analysts is projected to increase by 28% over the next several years. A technical support engineer's work experience is a great step toward this in-demand career. Information security analysts are in charge of a business's computer and network security. Developing security best practices, installing and maintaining firewalls and other security software, conducting security testing, and creating security breach reports are just a few of the regular responsibilities for this role. Remaining current on cyberattack and security trends is essential for an information security analyst. Employers often require a bachelor's degree in computer science, as well as relevant work experience, though some employers may prefer an MBA in information systems.
An experienced technical support engineer who also possesses strong interpersonal skills may excel in the role of a sales engineer. Sales engineers specialize in the sale of advanced technology. They assess client needs, present products that can provide a solution, and follow through on product supply and service. A sales engineer must understand the technical workings of their products, including installation and modification as needed by clients. A bachelor's degree in an engineering, technology or science field is a common requirement for this job. Sales training is also necessary, as is frequent retraining to keep up with technology and sales advancements.