what is an IT technician?

An IT technician provides support services to employees using a company's computer systems. When you join the profession, your work will involve fixing and maintaining hardware and software for your employer. Your job covers repairing or maintaining hardware parts of a computer system like desktops, printers and external hard drives in hardware support.

You also provide networking support, from installing networking equipment like switches, routers and cables to monitoring networks to ensure optimal performance. Your job also covers installation and monitoring security breaches. Monitoring includes regular system checks on the installed servers and computer systems to ensure that anti-virus programmes are running optimally.

When working as an IT technician, you also ensure an organisation's storage system is working as expected. Aside from regular checks for errors, you need to update storage systems and perform backups to avoid losing vital data during a system glitch. Apart from your main tasks, you will also assist other employees if they need technical support and recommend the best ways to improve the safety and security of your employer's computer systems.

Would working as an IT technician suit your passion and enthusiasm for working with computers? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in an IT technician role.

IT technician jobs

average salary of IT technicians

According to National Careers, the average annual salary of an entry-level it technician in the UK is £16,000. As you gain more experience solving software and hardware problems, your salary can increase to £35,000 per year. Aside from the basic salary, IT technicians enjoy allowances and company bonuses. The wages for self-employed or freelance IT technicians vary depending on the contract.

what factors affect the salary of an IT technician 

Salaries of IT technicians mainly depend on experience and specific skills. Experienced IT technicians can take on more responsibilities in a company compared to entry-level technicians. Qualifications and additional certifications also increase the salary of an IT technician. 

Other factors like location and company size also affect your wages. Small start-ups often pay less compared to large companies due to the diverse financial capabilities of every business. 

Working in some locations also boosts your wages since the employer factors in the cost of living and demand for technicians in the area. For example, working in major cities improves your compensation package compared to working in smaller towns.


types of IT technicians

As an IT technician, you will provide general IT support or specialise in the following areas:

  • help desk technician: when you are a help desk IT technician, your leading role is to diagnose technical problems for computer users. After identifying an issue, you contact a suitable technician to handle it.
  • desktop support technician: as a desktop support IT technician, you respond to problems arising in desktop computers. Your work is to troubleshoot issues or configure and test networks. You can also assist computer users in setting up new desktops or user accounts.
  • IT support analyst: if you are an IT support analyst, you are the go-to person during an IT audit. Your work is to determine issues that may arise in a system and recommend ways to improve its functionality.
  • it support specialist: your tasks are mainly hands-on since you are responsible for setting up or installing technologies. To avoid glitches, you will also troubleshoot and maintain hardware and software in your employer's computer systems.
Smiling male holding an tablet standing in a servers room.
Smiling male holding an tablet standing in a servers room.

working as an IT technician

A successful career in IT begins with a role as an IT technician. Here are the duties and daily responsibilities to expect as you kick-start your career:


education & qualifications

Become an IT technician by acquiring the required education and qualifications for success. Some of the academic qualifications include:

  • college course: most IT technicians join the profession through a college course in IT support or computing. For instance, you can study a Level 2 Certificate in ICT Systems Support or Level 3 Diploma in ICT professional competence.
  • apprenticeship: an advanced apprenticeship is another option for joining IT support services. The available training for IT technicians includes Level 3 IT solutions technician and Level 3 infrastructure technician. For the courses, you will need 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4, including maths and English.
  • certifications: standard certifications for IT technicians include CompTia A+ and Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate. You can also join the Chartered Institute for IT for additional credentials.

skills and competencies

Aside from academic qualification and technical knowledge, you need soft skills to boost your career prospects. Some of the skills include:

  • multitasking skills: as an IT technician, you will work in fast-paced surroundings, and your multitasking abilities can help you juggle multiple tasks.
  • computer skills: familiarity with computer software and hardware functions enables you to resolve computer systems problems. It is also crucial in installing and maintaining networks and ensuring upgrades benefit the company's operations.
  • analytical thinking: you need strong analytical and diagnostic skills to identify problems in a computer system. Analytical thinking also helps you uncover hidden issues in a network that can cause future problems.
  • problem-solving skills: your primary duty is to resolve system problems and assist computer users during hardware or software failure. Strong problem-solving ability is essential for IT technicians, and it helps them identify creative solutions for issues in a system.
smiling male sitting next to his computer
smiling male sitting next to his computer


FAQs about working as an IT technician.

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