Occupation Summary

Computer User Support Specialists

O*NET 15-1151.00


Provide technical assistance to computer users. Answer questions or resolve computer problems for clients in person, or via telephone or electronically. May provide assistance concerning the use of computer hardware and software, including printing, installation, word processing, electronic mail, and operating systems.

Annual Wages:
Employment Rate:
Employment is expected to increase by 18.23%.
Education Level:
Bachelor's Degree. According to O*Net, the majority of people employed in this occupation have this level of education.
Business and Industry

  1. Answer user inquiries regarding computer software or hardware operation to resolve problems.
  2. Enter commands and observe system functioning to verify correct operations and detect errors.
  3. Install and perform minor repairs to hardware, software, or peripheral equipment, following design or installation specifications.
  4. Oversee the daily performance of computer systems.
  5. Set up equipment for employee use, performing or ensuring proper installation of cables, operating systems, or appropriate software.
  6. Maintain records of daily data communication transactions, problems and remedial actions taken, or installation activities.
  7. Read technical manuals, confer with users, or conduct computer diagnostics to investigate and resolve problems or to provide technical assistance and support.
  8. Confer with staff, users, and management to establish requirements for new systems or modifications.
  9. Develop training materials and procedures, or train users in the proper use of hardware or software.
  10. Refer major hardware or software problems or defective products to vendors or technicians for service.
  11. Prepare evaluations of software or hardware, and recommend improvements or upgrades.
  12. Read trade magazines and technical manuals, or attend conferences and seminars to maintain knowledge of hardware and software.
  13. Inspect equipment and read order sheets to prepare for delivery to users.
  14. Modify and customize commercial programs for internal needs.
  15. Conduct office automation feasibility studies, including workflow analysis, space design, or cost comparison analysis.
  16. Hire, supervise, and direct workers engaged in special project work, problem solving, monitoring, and installing data communication equipment and software.

National Industry Employment Patterns

Industry % of Computer User Support Specialists employed Annual Growth Rate
Computer systems design and related services 21.1 1.83
Software publishers 3.4 1.75
Commercial equip. merchant wholesalers 3.2 -0.25
Management and technical consulting services 2.3 2.30
Wired telecommunications carriers 2 -1.71

Labor Market Information

2018 Statewide average hourly wage $25.12
2018 National average hourly wage $26.46
2016 National employment 636,600
2016 Texas employment 56,367
Texas projected employment by 2026 66,644
Texas projected annual employment and Turnover openings through 2026 5,444

* Due to confidentiality rules, not all regions may have the data displayed. The sum of all the regions may not be equal to the state total.

Top 10 Relevant Knowledge Areas Relevant Importance Levels
Computers and Electronics
Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
English Language
Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
Engineering and Technology
Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Public Safety and Security
Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

Top 10 Relevant Skill Areas Relevant Importance Levels
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Complex Problem Solving
Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Time Management
Managing one's own time and the time of others.
Judgment and Decision Making
Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Teaching others how to do something.
Active Learning
Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Top 10 Relevant Abilities Relevant Importance Levels
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Written Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Information Ordering
The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Speech Recognition
The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
Speech Clarity
The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Problem Sensitivity
The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Deductive Reasoning
The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

  • Interacting With Computers
    -- Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
  • Getting Information
    -- Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
    -- Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
    -- Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
    -- Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Other Activities

  • Adjust computer controlled simulation equipment
  • Analyze business problems
  • Analyze computer systems
  • Analyze technical designs or specifications
  • Analyze technical problems
  • Arrange trial installations of equipment
  • Assist users with software or hardware problems
  • Assist workers to resolve work problems
  • Communicate technical or scientific information
  • Communicate with others using social media
  • Compile equipment operational data
  • Conduct computer diagnostics
  • Confer with users to identify operating procedure problems
  • Confer with vendor representative
  • Configure computer operating systems
  • Debug computer programs, software, or systems
  • Design data processing systems
  • Design software or user interface
  • Determine customer needs
  • Determine equipment requirements
  • Develop simple financial data repositories or databases
  • Develop simple informational data repositories or databases
  • Develop simple operational data repositories or databases
  • Develop training programs
  • Direct network personnel in remote site configuration
  • Evaluate computer system user requests or requirements
  • Identify software needed for specific project or task
  • Identify training needs
  • Implement changes in computer systems
  • Implement robotics systems technology
  • Inspect machinery or equipment to determine damage, defects, adjustments, repairs, and suitability for use
  • Install computer programs
  • Install electronic equipment, components, or systems
  • Install hardware, software, or peripheral equipment
  • Integrate field notes into technical drawings
  • Integrate software or hardware into a variety of environments
  • Interpret information from blueprints, diagrams, schematics, or technical drawings
  • Interpret technical information from data, reports, and related documents
  • Load tapes, disks or paper into computers or peripherals
  • Maintain complex computer databases
  • Maintain computer software, programs, or code
  • Maintain computers or related equipment
  • Maintain network systems
  • Monitor computer operation
  • Monitor equipment or machine operation to detect problems
  • Monitor message or event logs for computer systems
  • Monitor operating conditions
  • Monitor use of computer data files to safeguard information
  • Offer purchase, repair, or modification recommendations of furnishings or equipment
  • Operate computers to enter, calculate, access, and retrieve data
  • Organize training procedure manuals
  • Perform continuing education to maintain licenses, certifications, qualifications, and knowledge currency
  • Perform minor office equipment maintenance
  • Perform minor repairs to hardware, software, or peripheral equipment
  • Perform software crash analysis
  • Plan computer security measures
  • Program computer numerical controlled machines
  • Provide information about facilities
  • Provide network support
  • Provide technical support and information
  • Read computer equipment operating manuals
  • Read technical, operating, service, or repair manuals or publications
  • Recommend software or hardware purchases
  • Record client's personal data
  • Repair computer equipment or accessories
  • Resolve customer or public complaints
  • Respond to requests for information
  • Review codes and specifications
  • Route computer output to specified users
  • Select business applications for computers
  • Set-up computer numerical control machines
  • Solve computer hardware problems
  • Solve computer program or software problems
  • Store data to avoid data loss
  • Test computer programs or systems
  • Test data communications systems
  • Train workers in use of equipment or computers
  • Transcribe spoken or written information
  • Troubleshoot computer, network, or database problems
  • Upload data to website or online server for information sharing
  • Write documentation for computer programming or operation
  • Write documentation for hardware maintenance tasks
  • Write technical specifications for computer systems
  • Write technical specifications for software or applications

  • Relationships
    - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Working Conditions
    - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.


Computer tool kits: Computer tool kits;

Desktop computers: Desktop computers;

Floppy disks: MS-DOS-bootable disks;

Hard disk arrays: Redundant array of independent disks RAID systems;

Mainframe computers: Mainframe computers;

Network analyzers: Network analyzers;

Notebook computers: Notebook computers;

Power meters: Power meters;

Punches or nail sets or drifts: Punchdown tools;

Reflectometers: Reflectometers;

Screwdrivers: Screwdrivers;

Special purpose telephones: Multi-line telephone systems;

Tape arrays: Digital tapes;

Wire lug crimping tool: Wire crimpers;


Access software: Citrix Software; Mac HelpMate;

Administration software: Element management software; SolarWinds software;

Application server software: Red Hat WildFly; Oracle WebLogic Server;

Authentication server software: Password management software;

Backup or archival software: Symantec LiveState; Veritas NetBackup; Disaster recovery software; Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service;

Calendar and scheduling software: Calendar and scheduling software;

Communications server software: IBM Domino;

Configuration management software: Automated installation software; Deployment software; Configuration management software; Patch management software; Puppet;

Data base management system software: Relational database management software; Sybase software; Oracle PL/SQL; Teradata Database;

Data base reporting software: SAP Crystal Reports; Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services;

Data base user interface and query software: Microsoft SQL Server software; Microsoft Access; IPro software; Lucid IQ; FileMaker Pro software; Blackboard software; Structured query language SQL; Software asset management SAM software; MySQL software; Transact-SQL;

Desktop communications software: Symantec pcAnywhere; Stac Software ReachOut; Remote control software; CrossTec NetOp Remote Control;

Desktop publishing software: Adobe Systems Adobe Distiller; Microsoft Publisher;

Development environment software: Microsoft .NET Framework; Common business oriented language COBOL; Microsoft Visual Basic; Microsoft Visual Basic Scripting Edition VBScript; Microsoft Visual Studio;

Document management software: Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat;

Electronic mail software: IBM Notes; Microsoft Exchange Server; Microsoft Outlook;

Enterprise application integration software: IBM WebSphere; Extensible markup language XML;

Enterprise resource planning ERP software: Enterprise resource planning ERP software; Microsoft Dynamics GP; Microsoft Dynamics software; Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne; Oracle PeopleSoft software; SAP Business Objects software; SAP software;

Enterprise system management software: Splunk Enterprise; IBM Power Systems software;

Filesystem software: Desktop partitioning software; Symantec Norton Utilities;

Graphics or photo imaging software: Adobe Systems Adobe Flash; Microsoft Visio;

Helpdesk or call center software: Call center software; Help desk software;

Human resources software: Human resource management software HRMS;

Information retrieval or search software: Information systems integration software;

Internet browser software: Internet browser software;

Internet directory services software: Domain name system DNS software; Active directory software; Network directory services software;

License management software: License management software;

Network monitoring software: Dartware InterMapper; Nagios; Wireshark;

Network operation system software: Remote install server software;

Network security or virtual private network VPN management software: Virtual private networking VPN software;

Object or component oriented development software: Practical extraction and reporting language Perl; Python; Oracle Java; Advanced business application programming ABAP; C#; C++;

Object oriented data base management software: PostgreSQL software;

Office suite software: Microsoft Office software;

Operating system software: Microsoft Windows; Microsoft Windows Pre-installation Environment; Linux; Job control language JCL; KornShell; Cisco Systems IOS software; Hewlett Packard HP-UX; Event log monitor software; Oracle Solaris; Operating system monitoring software; Red Hat Enterprise Linux; UNIX;

Platform interconnectivity software: Migration software;

Portal server software: Apache HTTP Server;

Presentation software: Microsoft PowerPoint;

Program testing software: Defect tracking software; Personal computer diagnostic software;

Project management software: Microsoft Project; Microsoft SharePoint software;

Spreadsheet software: Microsoft Excel;

Storage networking software: Media storage management software;

Transaction security and virus protection software: McAfee software; Encryption software; Virus scanning software; Symantec security software;

Transaction server software: Customer information control system CCIS;

Video creation and editing software: Apple Final Cut Pro;

Web page creation and editing software: Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver;

Web platform development software: Apache Tomcat; Dynamic hypertext markup language DHTML; Hypertext markup language HTML; PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor;

Word processing software: Microsoft Word;

Related O*NET occupational titles for Computer User Support Specialists include:
  • 27-4011.00 Audio and Video Equipment Technicians
  • 25-9011.00 Audio-Visual and Multimedia Collections Specialists
  • 27-4012.00 Broadcast Technicians
  • 43-9011.00 Computer Operators
  • 49-2011.00 Computer, Automated Teller, and Office Machine Repairers
  • 43-9031.00 Desktop Publishers
  • 17-3023.03 Electrical Engineering Technicians
  • 49-2097.00 Electronic Home Entertainment Equipment Installers and Repairers
  • 27-4014.00 Sound Engineering Technicians
  • 15-1199.03 Web Administrators

Sources of Additional Information
  • For more information about computer support specialists, visit: Technology Services Industry Association
  • Help Desk Institute (HDI)
  • Association of Support Professionals
  • For more information about computer careers, visit: Association for Computing Machinery
  • IEEE Computer Society
  • Computing Research Association
  • For information about opportunities for women pursuing information technology careers, visit: National Center for Women & Information Technology
  • Computer Network Support Specialists
  • Computer User Support Specialists

  • Contact Texas Workforce Commission
    Labor Market and Career Information  |  101 E. 15th Street, Annex Room 0252  |  Austin, Texas 78778
    Official Website  |  1-800-822-PLAN (7526)  |  512.936.3200

    ** The information in this report may be derived from many sources like O*NET, BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics), OOH (Occupational Outlook Handbook), and Career One Stop.