An IT technician is an employee in a technical field of computer science who is skilled in the specific skill and technique involved, with an often fairly detailed knowledge of both the theoretical and practical principles. In other words, an IT technician may know nothing about the inner workings of a computer, but is still expected to be able to troubleshoot a wide range of computer-related issues. The term “IT” can also be used to describe a number of different computer technologies: Information Technology, Computer Information Technology, Digital Information Technology, Wireless Technology, and Voice Information Technology. Often, it is not possible to talk about all these technologies at once.
A basic computer technician is someone who knows how to operate the basic components of computers: the keyboard, the monitor, the mouse, the CPU (the central processing unit), a central processing unit or a microprocessor (a tiny computer chip that performs many different tasks), and a memory (RAM). These hardware components are the basics of an operating system (OS), and are the core of most computers. These technicians are also usually the ones who are trained to work on new machines. New technologies, such as cell phones, handheld PDAs, and digital cameras, require an IT technician to install and configure the various software programs. This knowledge allows the technician to train future technicians in these new technologies.
Technicians may work part-time or full-time, depending on their experience and field of specialty. Part-time technicians generally work for local businesses or do freelance work for other companies. Full-time professionals generally work for larger companies, which seek out qualified technicians to help them solve customer problems. These technicians perform diagnostic work, repair software programs, and create documentation for computer systems. They must also be experienced in troubleshooting software programs, such as Windows, Linux, or Mac OS X.
For those seeking employment with computer companies or school labs, it is important to realize that those seeking these jobs often have a variety of skills and abilities. Most technicians may begin their careers by specializing in a specific field. This ability gives them an edge over others in a job position, since it shows that they are skilled in a particular area. It also helps them develop their skill set for future positions.
Many technicians also specialize in training other technicians in computer systems and troubleshooting. This allows technicians to be called upon when needed for troubleshooting internet applications or hardware problems on a more regular basis. A technician with specialized training in troubleshooting for multimedia equipment may be able to take customers outside their office to troubleshoot their equipment. This is especially helpful for smaller companies or home offices, which do not always have their own technicians available to attend to complex troubleshooting issues. For this reason, many technicians with IT experience are employed by companies to provide troubleshooting services outside their workplace.
In addition to specialized training, most IT technicians gain experience through on the job training. They may work in information technology departments, providing information technology support to internal networked computer systems. The technicians may also work in networks of businesses, assisting managers and higher-level personnel with network design and implementation. They may work with business service centers, providing assistance to small businesses and newer firms that cannot afford the time or knowledge necessary to design and manage their own networks. Finally, they may serve as consultants for larger companies, helping to solve problems and provide advice about computer software and hardware procurement.