In a digital world, tech support is essential. Tech support specialists manage, maintain, and repair IT (information technology) systems, which is especially important for e-commerce businesses or companies that primarily work and communicate, both internally and externally, online. Whenever website visitors, app users, or company employees encounter an issue, they can simply be redirected to a tech support specialist who can pinpoint, troubleshoot, and solve the problem for them. This translates to better customer experience and increased profits, as well as improved company workflows.
What Is Tech Support?
Tech support refers to professionals that are responsible for overseeing and maintaining a company’s hardware and software systems. These include resolving technical issues, installing and configuring gadgets and apps, along with diagnosing and repairing faults.
Tech support is often divided into tiers, with first to third levels of support referring to the people hired to resolve IT issues. The first level usually deals with more simple problems; the higher the level goes, the more complex the work (and typically, the more access to high-level technology).
Types of Tech Support
Depending on the size and type of the company, a tech support’s scope of work differs. But what are the different types of technical support anyway?
From chief information and technical officers to entry-level IT phone assistants, tech support can generally be distinguished between hardware and software support, though these can be broken down further into specializations. You must know which type you need before you go and hire technical support.
Hardware tech support specialists handle everything that relates to gadgets, including their repair. Meanwhile, software tech support specialists deal with software, i.e. the programs in these gadgets. This includes troubleshooting apps, ensuring programs are up and running, and the like.
Responsibilities of Tech Support
The responsibilities of tech support include, but aren’t limited to, the following:
- Installing, modifying, repairing, and managing computer hardware and software systems
- Resolving technical requests or problems
- Troubleshooting technical and process issues
- Completing detailed reports of technical assistance (especially when related to customers)
- Maintaining functional computer systems
- Testing computer hardware and software to keep them in-tune
- Designing and implementing networks
- Maximizing computer systems capabilities, often through the purchasing or recommendation of better hardware and software
- Training users (i.e. employees) on hardware and software use
- Documenting hardware and software updates
- Keeping up-to-date with the latest technology
- Drafting operational instructions
What Skills Are Required for Tech Support?
Tech support combines technical and interpersonal skills as it deals both with hardware and software, as well as people. Here are the most important skills to look for in a tech support specialist:
Any tech support specialist must be proficient in operating systems and any related hardware and software that they must troubleshoot. This can be measured by a degree in either computer science or information technology, though it’s not always necessary; some great tech support specialists can do the job even with just basic knowledge on the relevant topics, which they may have acquired through specialized classes or courses.
The goal of tech support is to solve problems that customers and employees may face while using the technology of the company. This requires conversing with people, so tech support specialists must have excellent oral and written communication skills to be able to properly communicate the problems, steps required to troubleshoot, and how they can help exactly. In that sense, any experience in customer service is a bonus, too!
Problem-Solving Mindset and Ability
Tech support must be able to identify problems, come up with appropriate solutions, and execute them with ease. These steps are only possible with a problem-solving mindset and ability, which serves as a guide for their decision-making process.
Tech support specialists may have to work on several support tickets at once, so they should have great project management skills to be able to accomplish everything in an organized and timely manner.
Attention to Detail
Troubleshooting hardware and software requires a lot of attention to detail. One minor error can cause malfunctions, compromised data, or worse. Tech support must be meticulous when doing their job to ensure that everything works smoothly.
Do I Need Tech Support for My Business?
Any business that has an online entity, especially e-commerce businesses, must have tech support to help them with all of their hardware and software needs. You don’t have to look far to find a qualified tech support specialist. Just a quick search on Guru can find you who you need—at a budget that works for you.
A tech support specialist is valuable in improving customer experience, and their help may just be the ticket to a higher customer retention rate. He or she also helps in ensuring that internal workflows and processes are seamless and that employees never have to blame wonky hardware or faulty software for unproductivity.