Changes in Tech Support in More than 3 Decades

For more than 3 decades, IT has witnessed immense and incredible changes such changes impacted the arena of tech support. Can you still recall how it used to be? Several changes have taken place. Computers have changed and so as users and most significantly, the technical support environment.

  • Task. Before, not so many people had computers at home. Computers were found mostly at work or at school. As a matter of fact, computers at home were problems and compatibility of software and hardware is one of them. However, the problem had its upside as well. Tech support did not succeed in keeping work, home and school separate.
  • Working Tech Jobs from HomeLocation. In the 80s, computers were installed. They are set up on location by technical support or by the user. If there are problems later on, it is necessary to make a visit, going to the computer. Today, computers are portable as they are made smaller, more affordable and powerful. In the 80s, support was set up where the PCs were. But today, other approaches are necessary. With tablets and smartphones so popular, complete mobility lies in the cards.
  • Time. With computers mostly at school or work, computing and support can be accomplished for the most part during school or work schedule. Dividing lines between school time, work time and time off became less clear and computers are far more a part of daily life.
  • There are developments and rise of networks. Matching the changes to time, task and location was the increased use of computer networks. This resulted on the changes of how computers were used. In the 1980s, the main reason to network computers was local—to be able to share costly peripherals such as laser prints or provide access to some databases. In the subsequent decades, the spread of networks made computers more like terminals centered on the ability to connect to others no matter the distance, access databases regardless of where they are located and use the capabilities of distant data centers.
  • There was an increase in standardization. A vital aspect of the increase of networks was the extensive adoption of the right standards. Networks will require standard in order to function and as the networks connected more software and hardware, there had been emergence of new incompatibilities. As a result, this generated pressure in developing and adopting new standards.
  • There was an increase in open standards and open source. With web browsers and internet developed, collaborative efforts were made to open standards that are much easier to make and maintain. In addition, it has allowed software developers to harness effectively the efforts of distant colleagues to make efficient, reliable and cheap open source software. Programs and standards have both the effects of simplifying and encouraging more integration of computers and networks.
  • There was a possibility of updates over the internet. In the past, tech support delivered and installed upgrades or updates to software. The updates were relatively rare as well. But viruses and other malware threats have increased in severity and number in the next decades, antivirus applications and operating systems started requiring more frequent updates. Broadband network connections become common for computers as well, providing a convenient option for delivery of upgrades and updates. Today, updates are delivered always over the intranet or Internet, mostly without the assistance of tech support.
  • Users are more independent and knowledgeable. In the 1980s, PCs were new with computing just starting to reach beyond the walls of data centers. Users requiring computer support were clueless. A great deal of time is needed to explain the mouse and how to use it. Now, less training is needed. Most users of today grew up with computers and they have relatively great amount of skill and knowledge.
  • Networks have become component of the infrastructure. Ultimately, networking is the most critical factor in changes to tech support but now, such requirement is rather optional.

Be sure to read through our job markets and hiring guides or more information on how tech companies and businesses in your area are interviewing and hiring for jobs in the tech support market.

  • Tech support has become a component of the infrastructure. The integration of more standardization, smarter users and network access has made it possible to assign initial user support to help desks, delivered by network or telephone. Visits are rather rarely needed, changing the nature of tech support.

What Do Tech Giants Look for in Applicants?

The evolution and innovation in technology have paved the way for the big companies to rake billions of dollars and become main drivers of global economy. And, who would not want to join their bandwagons?

A lot of young hopefuls are now convinced that IT certification will drive their career to success. Anything related to software engineering, programming, web development, mobile applications, cloud computing and database management are sure to beef up bank accounts in the near future.

While you are mastering Javascript, HTML, PHP, cloud models and other IT-related turfs, you must remember that hard skills are not enough for you to get a nod from big tech companies today. Many of them are after behaviors and attitudes that no training can develop.

  1. Find Tech Support JobsTeam player – Skills are extremely important. Excellent knack for coding is a plus. But, search engine mogul Google is looking for a person who can thrive and work within a team. They are particularly looking for good collaborators that can be comfortable with ambiguity. After all, Google was founded by not just one brain. Sergey Brin and Larry Page put together their efforts and dreams to build one of the largest and diverse tech organizations in the planet.
  2. Passionate – The word passion may sound quite vague for some. But, for most tech companies, they are eager to hire candidates who are passionate to provide excellent user experience. They would opt for someone who fervently drives excellence in data development, software engineering and content.
  3. Daring – No success comes without risking. Steve Jobs gambled on reviving the dying mobility industry with the launch of iPhones and iPads. The ability to present predictive models and their insights of the future are rare but highly valuable.
  4. Creative – Thinking out of the box is what separates the best from the rest. Facebook has created a different social networking platform that lured billions of users in less than 5 years. Instagram saw the opportunity of a social media through photo filtering and sharing. A little bit of crazy plus skills is a deadly combination.
  5. Resilient – Market demands are constantly changing. Someone who can easily adapt to changes can be a good asset to the organization. Most self-taught IT professionals are sturdier with changes than those who are educated inside academes whose principles are molded by industrialists rather than their own discovery.

The competition in the job market is tough. People are trying to get themselves more training and education to gain advantage over other candidates.

In-Demand IT Jobs in the Market

Are you still in college and deciding which course to take that will prepare you for a long-standing career in the future? Considering fields in the information technology is a good starting ground.

The world’s attention is looming around IT and the limitless horizon of the industry. If you are in it for adventure and big money, here are some of the in-demand tech jobs in the market today.

Web Developer

This is perhaps the job for the “jack of all trades”. From web development, applications testing, web content and many others. If you want to embark on this profession in the future, you will have to have a good grasp and understanding of a good operating system. You also need to be expert with the following: HTML, Javascript and other programming languages. The more talented guys can create visually stunning and optimized websites.

Estimated yearly earning of web developers: $90,000.00

Software Engineer

IT and Tech Support Jobs

If you are noodling around creating video games and programs running on mobile devices, you might want to pursue a career as a software engineer. The big advantage of this profession is that you can thrive in different niches and industries.

Estimated yearly earning of web developers: $90,000.00

Mobile Applications Developer

Thanks to iOS and Android, the world is completely embracing mobility. Everyone nowadays owns a smartphone, a tablet or both. The reason why you can access applications through your iPhone is because of these tech guys.

Big companies such as Google, Apple and Amazon are always in the lookout for excellent mobile applications developer for their applications.

Estimated yearly earning of mobile applications developer: $90,000.00

Cloud Architect

You must be living under the rock if you have not heard of the tech jargon, cloud or cloud computing. This makes use of virtualization to store data. Several companies around the world are adapting cloud due to significant savings in operating costs and increase in competitive edge. As cloud architects, you will design and engineer cloud model and services for companies that offer managed hosting solutions.

Estimated yearly earning of mobile applications developer: $112,000.00

Database Administrator

If you have the knack for details and problem-solving, being a database administrator must be the perfect job for you. These IT professionals undertake the upgrading, fine-tuning and testing modifications of databases of companies.

Estimated yearly earning of mobile applications developer: $103,000.00

Another good thing about taking up IT courses is just like Math, programming languages, are universal. This only means that you have more chances in snatching lucrative job opportunities even abroad.

How To Contact Facebook Tech Support

Boasting a user base of over one billion users, Facebook is an extremely popular social networking site and one of the most frequently visited websites worldwide. Thanks to Facebook’s many services, which include free basic accounts, applications, games and communication via live chat, private messaging and public message posts, users of all ages and technological capabilities are connected to the Internet and communicating with friends near and far. With a user base as large and varied as Facebook has, there is a definite need for technical support which is accessible and comprehensible to people of many different ages and levels of ability around the world, something that the company has taken into consideration.

Contacting Facebook Technical Support Online

When a Facebook user has a technical question or problem, they are initially guided to type a query regarding their situation. For a user who is logged in, this dialog box can be accessed by clicking on the gear icon in the upper right hand corner of the blue header which appears on all pages while using the site. By selecting the Help option, the user will bring up a dialog asking them what they need help with as well as giving them topic options including managing the news feed, sharing, notifications, ticker and privacy. If the user’s issue falls outside of these categories, they can access the Help Center, located here, by clicking Visit the Help Center. In order to directly report a specific issue to the Facebook staff, a user can select Report a Problem in that same menu. This will allow the user to send a message to a staffer regarding a site problem, abuse, policy violations or other issues.

If the user does not need to speak to someone directly, the help center can allow them to learn more about account management, security and privacy on Facebook, Timeline profiles, the news feed or home page, sharing of information, messaging, connecting, popular Facebook features, the Facebook Mobile application for iOS and Android, applications, games, credits, Facebook fan page management, ads and sponsored stories. The help center also gives users the ability to report an issue or access the Facebook community forum.

Other Forms of Facebook Technical Support

Currently, Facebook does not offer technical support to users via telephone, email or postal mail. The development of their help center has created a centralized system which can answer most technical questions asked by Facebook users as well as give those users an opportunity to report any issue they feel has not been addressed. The amount of users that Facebook has and the fact that the vast majority of their services are free makes it implausible for the web site to offer technical support beyond their help center and messaging system. However, the help center functions as an extremely comprehensive guides to the ins and outs of Facebook use, including many of the most common user concerns such as privacy, data sales and sharing and the avoidance of harmful games or applications.

How To Contact Google Tech Support

When many people think of search engines, their mind immediately turns to Google. As one of the most popular search engines worldwide, Google receives many daily visitors and has become a household name. In addition to their search services, the company also provides a multitude of other very popular and practical services for users. The company provides their own free web browser, Google Chrome, and has linked with media sharing giant YouTube, allowing users with a Google account to upload multimedia content using the site. In addition, Google offers an image editing and sharing service, the ability to find maps and directions as well as see many locations on the planet via satellite cameras, free email accounts, the Google+ social networking site, a calendar, a virtual drive, text and website translation and much more.

Contacting Google Tech Support Online

With so many products and services available to users, it goes without saying that Google absolutely must have a technical support base to handle problems and answer questions from their many worldwide users. Accessing Google’s tech support system online is easy. In order to ask a question or report an issue, users should visit Google’s contact page, located here. On this page, users are given the option to search the help center with their question, select a product that they are having trouble with or directly browse the help center, located here.

When a user types in their query, Google automatically matches their question with known issues in the product forum and brings up search results that may be relevant. When a user directly selects the Google product that their issue regards, they are taken to the help page for that product. On that help page, the user can peruse a variety of helpful guides or be directed to the Google+ help forum, where queries can be answered. Direct contact via email is not offered as a tech support option by Google at this time, however, using the Google+ help form for technical support can allow users whose queries are not able to be answered by existing guides and posts to find the help that they need.

Contacting Google Tech Support Via Telephone or Postal Mail

While they are not specifically provided as a technical support resource for customers, Google does provide the telephone number, fax number and street address of their main headquarters as well as the locations of other offices worldwide.

To reach Google by telephone, dial +1 650 253 0000
To reach Google by fax, send a fax to +1 650 253 0001
To reach Google by postal mail, send inquiries to:

Google Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, CA 94043

Google has over 70 offices worldwide located in over 40 countries. In order to find the postal address or phone number for any of these locations, users can visit Google’s Locations page, located here, and click on the office nearest to them for their postal address, telephone number and fax number. Technical support is not promised by this contact information but it is the only means given to reach Google directly.

How To Contact AT&T Tech Support

AT&T, one of America’s first providers of telephone service, has greatly expanded their scope of services since their origins in the late 1800s. At their inception, AT&T was at the forefront of innovation, bringing new technology to the masses. This business model has continued for the corporation over the years as it has changed and evolved, and the company remains a household name. One of the most popular providers of wireless devices, digital televisions, Internet service and home phone service in the United States, AT&T has a place in many American households. Like all companies that offer technical services, it is necessary for AT&T to offer comprehensive and accessible technical support. Support for AT&T’s products and services is available both online and via telephone.

Contacting AT&T Technical Support Online

Like many companies that provide technical services, AT&T primarily relies on a knowledge base, located here, to allow users to learn about products, troubleshoot devices and have the opportunity to find the answers to their own questions. By using a knowledge base in this fashion, the company is able to save time for both the user and technical support employees by providing easy access to commonly asked questions and solutions to common device or service issues. AT&T provides support information for all of their products and services. The knowledge base provided to users offers tutorial videos which help users to understand the specifics of many provided products and services. Device specific help is also available to users in the form of a device how-to guide section. Users are given the opportunity to troubleshoot any product or service as well as estimate data usage for mobile and home Internet plans.

For users who can not solve their issue or answer their question using the knowledge base, a live chat option is available. The live chat is accessed by clicking Live Chat on the right hand side of the AT&T Support Center header. Selecting this option allows the user to select their product, describe their issue and choose from a variety of live chat options. If users wish to email AT&T regarding their query, they can click on Contact Us at the bottom of the Support page to access a contact page, located here. Some options on this page will offer the ability to email AT&T directly via a website email template that is located here.

Contacting AT&T Technical Support Via Other Methods

AT&T offers a variety of tech support helplines via telephone. By clicking on the Call Us link located on the right side of the AT&T Support Center header, users will be taken to the telephone contact page, located here.

Customers in need of technical support for wireless devices should call 1 800 331 0500 or dial 611 from their AT&T wireless phone.
International wireless customers should call 1-800-335-4685.
U-Verse TV users should call 1 800 288 2020 for technical support.
DirecTV users should call 1 800 288 1145.
Dish Network users should call 1 866 722 7500.
Technical support for home internet is available at 1 866 722 3425, 24 hours a day.

AT&T does not currently provide a postal address for technical support contact.

How To Contact Sony Tech Support

Sony, a multimedia and electronics conglomerate that has arguably become a household name, has grown by leaps and bounds from its humble roots in post World War II Japan. Presently, Sony is one of the leading manufacturer of a variety of electronic products, including desktop and laptop computers, tablet PCs, handheld devices, digital video and DSLR cameras, televisions, Blu-ray and DVD players, mp3 players, game consoles and many more. As the manufacturer of such a broad scope of products that are used by people of all ages in households around the world, having a technical support system in place for questions, issues and instructions regarding products is necessary. Sony provides a variety of technical support types for all of their products.

Contacting Sony Technical Support Online

For users of any of Sony’s many products who have technical questions or issues, a knowledge base is available on the Sony website, located here. Sony’s easy to use eSupport system offers downloads of drivers and software necessary to make certain computer peripherals function properly, guides to troubleshooting products and understanding product functionality, information from product manuals, system specifications, warranty information, specialized codes required to program devices such as remote controls and a series of video tutorials to help users understand their Sony products. The knowledge base offered to users makes it easy to solve many technical issues a user might have with a product.

In addition to the aforementioned services, the knowledge base offered by Sony also allows users to search for their specific product by model number in order to learn more about how to use their device, discover any known issues with the device and download any software needed for the device to function. Sony also provides information regarding issues that will require repairs by the company. If, after troubleshooting a technical issue, a user discovers that Sony will need to repair their product, the knowledge base provides information regarding online or in store product repairs as well as service plans. Users who cannot determine the nature of their problem through the knowledge base can chat live with a technical support representative by clicking Chat Now, located here. Additionally, users can send email to Sony’s support team by clicking Email Us, located here. Emails must be sent through the website template, as a specific email address is not provided.

Contacting Sony Technical Support Via Other Methods

In the event that a consumer does not want to or is not able to use the knowledge base provided online to solve their issue or use the live chat or email features to contact a Sony representative, telephone contact information is provided by Sony. A dedicated contact page is located here, with customer relations telephone numbers listed here.

American customers with consumer electronics queries should call 1 239 768 7547. International customers with consumer electronics queries should call 1 239 768 7676. Telephone support for consumer electronics is available Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 8:00 PM EST. Consumers having difficulty with PlayStation game consoles or PlayStation Portable handheld gaming devices should call 1 800 345 7669. Support is available Monday through Saturday from 6:00 AM to 8:00 PM PT and Sunday from 7:00 AM to 6:30 PM PT. Americans with VAIO computer queries should call 1 239 768 7545, while international users should call 1 239 768 7676. Sony does not currently provide a postal address for technical support contact.

Getting an IT Certification

When searching for work in the competitive information technology field, anything that gives you a competitive edge and sets you apart from the many other individuals seeking work is something that will work to your benefit. The primary way to give yourself that edge is by furthering your education after high school, even if you studied a computer related vocation during this time. Not everyone has the time, money or opportunity to complete a course of study at a two or four year college, but fortunately, there are a variety of certification programs available for people who wish to work in the information technology field. The completion of a certificate program gives evidence that the recipient has completed a certification test indicating proficiency in the specification in which they chose to be certified.

How Do Certifications Work?

A certification is, in its most basic form, a detailed examination which you must complete and pass in order to prove proficiency in a subject. They exist across a variety of fields, and there are many types of certifications available for those seeking future work in the information technology field. When obtaining a certification, an individual has the option of taking a course of study at a community college, tech school or local institution where a related program is offered. This course of study is much more brief than what is required in order to obtain a degree, and features several periods of concentrated learning. Taking on a course of study before taking a certification test is optional. Individuals seeking certification have the option to study independently and learn the information necessary to pass the test on their own. In this case, a certification test can be scheduled at some community colleges, tech schools and testing centers. Information about where tests can be taken is available online.

What Kinds Of Certifications Are Available For Aspiring IT Professionals?

Because there are so many specializations within the information technology field, a wide variety of certifications are available for aspiring professionals. Some of the certifications are very basic, including the use of operating systems and their related programs, while others are much more complex and include knowledge of software or web programming and network administration, among others. When seeking a certification based on a desire for a career in information technology, knowing the certificates that are currently in high demand can help you to make a choice. Here are the most in demand certifications for 2013:

Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate – This job has a salary range between $52,000 and $115,000 and is an excellent basic certification which can lay the groundwork for future Microsoft based certifications.

Private Cloud – This job has a salary range between $52,000 and $102,000. It prepares a certified individual for work in the field of cloud computing, a feature that is highly in demand.

Project Management Professional – This job has a salary range between $65,000 and $93,000. It prepares certified individuals to professionally manage projects within the information technology field.

VMware Certified Professional – This job has a salary range between $59,000 and $80,000. It prepares certified individuals to create platforms for virtual computing, a field that is rapidly growing in popularity.

Certified Information Systems Security Professional – This job has a salary range between $65,000 and $111,000. It prepares certified individuals to create secure networks and hardware and prevent breaches in security within the information technology field.

Getting Experience In The IT Field

Like many other fields, breaking into the information technology field without relevant experience is extremely difficult. Without any experience to speak of, you are left with a resume that gives no indication of your ability to perform an information technology job. Without schooling or a certification, you are simply someone who would like to work in IT but does not have the kind of background that gets people hired. While this can be discouraging, especially if you are a student in the field who does not yet have real world experience, there are some ways to work around the issue of lack of experience.

Consider Work Study Programs

Many colleges offer work study programs as a part of financial aid or a federal program during which students can gain real world experience. Information technology students can find opportunities like these by checking out the section of their school’s website that is devoted to the IT department, looking for a list of work study programs, keeping an eye out for postings on bulletin boards and by asking around to see if teachers or professors have any information about upcoming or ongoing work study opportunities. These programs allow students to gain real world knowledge about the IT field that can be used on a resume, making them a more attractive hire.

Get A Certification

If you are not a student of information technology and do not have the time or money for a two or four year degree but would like to work in the field, certification is an option for you. A certification indicates that you have relevant experience in the specification of your choice. This can be ideal for individuals who have plenty of personal experience in a specialization and are self taught, as a certification test may be taken without actually completing a course of study. However, a certification can also be obtained by those who still need to learn the material- courses of study that are cheaper and shorter than college degrees are generally available at local colleges and technical schools. Certification tests can also be taken at these locations.

Internships and Externships

For individuals who are in a two year or four year college or a technical school, internships and externships are a valuable way to gain real world experience. These opportunities can often be found in the same manner as work study programs. In an internship, a student works at a local business and sometimes receives compensation at the end, also receiving real world training and potentially college credit in exchange. Although the student is not paid, they gain experience that can be put on a resume, increasing their chances of getting hired. An externship is slightly different in that it is usually taken on towards the end of a student’s college career as a way to gain real world experience by shadowing at a job or something similar. When completing an externship, a student is usually not paid. Regardless, the externship gives them real world experience that they previously lacked, which is great for enhancing their resume.

Volunteerism

If you are an information technology student looking for real world experience, one option is volunteering. The library or computer labs at your college may need people to work as attendants, occasionally fixing computer and network issues. Individuals who volunteer are usually mentored by a supervisor and taught some helpful tips and tricks about fixing computer problems. This gives a student experience in simple tech support and network administration, valuable skills that can be used on the job. Volunteer positions can be listed on a resume and count as real world experience, contributing to the chances that the student will find an IT position.

Obtaining A Degree That Will Further Your IT Career

Whether you have work experience in the field of information technology or are simply preparing for an eventual career, pursuing a degree with specifications that relate to your desired type of work will provide a wider scope of employment opportunities which offer a higher pay grade. Information technology and its related fields are extremely employable- as of 2011, the unemployment rate for computer support specialists was a scant 0.8%. There are a wide variety of information technology jobs available, and as such, choosing a degree that has a specialization must be a serious consideration when planning to begin or enhance an IT career. Degrees such as network technology, computer science and software engineering all provide unique opportunities when going forward and seeking employment in the field.There is a widespread awareness of the demand for IT graduates, and as such, many students who are beginning college are choosing technology related majors. The increase of students who are majoring in these fields has increased the competition for scholarships and honors presented by schools and organizations. When choosing to begin or return to school to study information technology, students should be prepared to give themselves a competitive edge by working hard, learning as much as possible and taking advantage of special opportunities such as work study programs and internships that will give them real world experience which can help to sculpt a more employable resume.

One option that some information technology students take advantage of is the ability to obtain certifications while pursuing a degree. Certifications signify expertise in a specific area of practice. Currently, the most employable certifications include Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate, Private Cloud, Project Management Professional, VMware Certified Professional and Certified Information Systems Security Professional certifications. Pursuing any of these programs while also pursuing a degree in an information technology field will make a student more employable upon graduation. Schools often provide information on these certifications and even offer the programs and classes necessary to obtain them at a discount, making the task more convenient and economical than it would be otherwise.

Obtaining a post-graduate or graduate degree in an information technology field will arm you for the work force in a way that simply jumping into the field can not. People who have pursued extensive courses of study are often considered to be more qualified for complex jobs like system analysis, system administration, database administration and computer or software programming. The amount of jobs that require a bachelor’s degree as a bare minimum for qualification is rapidly increasing as the technology field expands and becomes more complex. Currently, the rate of unemployment is highest among those without a college degree, with the rate of employment for high school graduates declining 16% during the recession while employment rates for those with a bachelor’s degree declined only 7%. Straighter Line ranks computer and mathematics degrees as those with the second most earning potential, stating that recent graduates earn an average of $46,000 per year and are likely to escalate to an average of $76,000 per year with experience.

Most colleges and universities offer a variety of degree programs relating to information technology, but choosing the right university for you can depend on a multitude of factors. Exploring the graduate employment rate and average earnings of graduates in your preferred major when considering a school is wise. Currently, the most employable American college graduates are studying at Harvard, Yale, Stanford, MIT, Columbia, Princeton, Boston University, the California Institute of Technology, the University of Chicago and Brown University.

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