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Computer Repair Careers, Jobs and Training Information

Computer Repair Career and Job Highlights

  • The necessary qualifications for these jobs can obtained through the various forms of educational and vocational programs which exist to provide training in electronics, including associate degree programs, military and vocational schools, equipment manufacturers, and employers. A heightened dependence of both business and residential customers on computers and office machines is reflected by job growth.
  • A working knowledge of electronics and repair experience will help secure a job in this industry. The possibility for obtaining computer repair jobs is great as employers are reporting a shortage in qualified applicants.

Computer Repair Career Overview

Computer repairers, commonly called computer service technicians or data-processing equipment repairers, aid in servicing mainframes, servers, and personal computers; printers; and even disc drives. Computer repairers focus mainly on hands-on repair, as well as installing and maintaining computers and their peripherals. Computer support specialists, also known as computer support technicians, give technical support, either by phone or in person, to users of computer systems.

Automated teller machines (ATMs) let customers complete bank transactions without personal assistance, thereby eliminating the help of a teller. Among the services accessible via ATMs are purchases involving stamps, phone cards, and tickets. Automated teller machine servicers provide the needed repairs and maintenance for these machines.

Office machine and cash register servicers repair and maintain photocopiers, cash registers, mail-processing equipment, and fax machines. As newer models become more computerized, advances in functionality and effectiveness have been realized compared to earlier models.

Repairers who do installations on large equipment, like ATM’s and mainframes, must make the proper connection between power sources and communications lines so that information flows properly across the computer networks. For example, when a withdrawal of cash is made at an ATM, it communicates the withdrawal information to the customer’s financial institution. Additional installation, such as that of operating software and peripheral equipment, is done by workers who ensure that each component is configured properly and that the system is functioning as desired. Easier installations, like that of a personal computer or other small office machines, might be carried out by the purchaser.

As equipment failures are experienced, repairers will make on-site visits at the customer’s business or home to carry out the required repairs. Workers that operate in this manner are called field technicians, and typically they have set areas where they carry preventive maintenance measures regularly. Bench technicians remain in one location, working from shops found in stores, factories, or service centers. It is possible that repairers may work in the repair shop as well as at customer locations in small companies.

Often, rather than repairing subsystems, computer repairers will actually replace them. Subsystems are relatively inexpensive, and thus replacement is routine as businesses are hesitant to go offline for potentially lengthy repairs. Some of the most common subsystems replaced by workers include video cards, which send signals from the computer to the monitor; hard drives, which provide data storage; and network cards, which facilitate communication over a network. Bench technicians analyze defective modules by using software programs to identify problems, and will make repairs when possible.

When ATM’s are not working properly, repairers are notified by computer networks that observed the issue. Worn magnetic heads on card readers is a problem frequently encountered which keeps the ATM from recognizing the bankcard of a customer. Another common failure is a “pick failure” which keeps the machine from dispensing the right amount of cash. Field technicians work on-site while repairing ATM’s, and repairs typically require taking out the defective part and installing a new part. Parts that have failed are take to the repair shop, and once there bench technicians repair them. Field technicians regularly perform ordinary maintenance, replacing old and battered parts and performing tests to diagnose any potential problems and ensure that the equipment is functioning properly.

Office machine repairers normally do their work usually at the customer’s workplace; however, if the machines are small enough, customers might bring them directly to the repair shop for service. Frequent issues involve paper misfeeds, thanks to old or unclean parts, and poor-quality copy, because of issues with lamps, lenses, or mirrors. These problems typically can be corrected by cleaning the appropriate parts. Malfunctions may be due to the nonperformance of frequently used components. For example, constant utilization of a photocopier can debilitate the printhead, which places ink on to the end copy. Often times, the repairer will replace the part rather than make the needed repair.

There is an array of tools and test that workers use. The array of tools used to diagnose problems include multimeters, which are used to measure voltage, current, resistance; signal generators render test signals; and oscilloscopes to track equipment signals. Software programs are utilized to identify problems with computerized equipment. Workers have a variety of handtools, like pliers, screwdrivers, soldering irons, and wrenches to aid them in them in fixing the machines.