IT has never been more important in business than it is today - and the sector's growth shows no sign of slowing. The importance of information systems to the world economy means that roles such as IT Support Engineer and IT Support Analyst are almost guaranteed to be in ever higher demand in coming years. As such, IT recruitment agencies are always on the lookout for good System Support staff to match the requirements of their clients - and as such, agencies represent one of the most efficient ways for an organisation to fill these roles.
Recruitment in IT support
Given that the role is widespread and commonly-recognised, agencies operating within the IT Tech Support segment can be either IT specialists, or based in a more general discipline. When seeking candidates, recruiters tend to look for relevant qualifications and experience in this area - including diplomas and certificates in ICT Systems, or professional certifications from the likes of Microsoft or Cisco. These include Microsoft certified IT professional (MCITP) and Cisco certified network associate (CCNA).
Entry-level IT Support jobs pay around £18-22k per year - although this can rise to around £30k with experience. Having a foothold within a company can allow an IT Support professional the opportunity for promotion into managerial or supervisory roles, as well as more lateral movement into areas such as Information Security or Network Engineering. IT Support is generally organised into 'lines' (similar to ranks) such as 1st, 2nd and 3rd Line Support. These grow in seniority as the line number increases.
IT support - key responsibilities
The role of an IT Support Operative varies depending on the organisation concerned, and the type of network or system they operate, but generally, such a job will involve ensuring that other employees of the company are able to go about their business unhindered by technical faults or glitches. In addition to ensuring the smooth running of any IT systems in the organisation, Support Operatives might also be required to train other members of staff in the effective usage of systems, and set up new system components (e.g. a workstation for a new starter).
In order to carry out these roles, IT Support professionals require a mixture of skills, including good knowledge of the operating systems in use by a company - e.g. Microsoft Windows, Apple Mac OS, Linux, etc.; sociability; and reasonable physical fitness to allow them the means to solve hardware issues which might well involve crawling around in a confined space.