What Is The Best Career Move for Technical Support Engineers?

Part 8 of 21 in the Series: Career Advice - Ask IT Career Coach
Careers for Network / Support Engineers
Careers for Network / Support Engineers

I would like to start this post by introducing [Ask IT Career Coach], a Career Advice Column that offers help, answers or solutions for your most challenging career situations.

This question was submitted by a reader from Johannesburg, South Africa: “What will be a best career move as a Desktop Engineer?”

The Best Career Move For Desktop or Technical Support Engineers

  1. Which Career Are You Best Suited For?

    There is no one singular career that works for every desktop engineer, so your first job is to discover the career you are best suited for.

    You may move to another related career and become a: network engineer, information security specialist, server administrator, network administrator or you may transition to a career that has nothing to do with desktops, servers, hardware or networking!

  2. How Do You Choose The Best Career?

    You can choose the next career move based on what your friends or colleagues recommend for you or based on what is the best-paying job in your field or based on which careers are currently in-demand or in-fashion.

    • However some of the folks recommending specific careers do so because that is all they have ever know or because they do not know about other alternative career options!

    • Choosing the next career move based on how much you are paid is not advisable because it leads to career instability and poor performance.

      Sooner or later, you will discover that you are not really passionate about the career and you will be unable to advance because of that!

    • Moving into a career because it’s in-fashion or popular is short-sighted because it results in you doing work that you’re not suited for.

      For example, becoming a pre-sales support engineer may be popular in your circle but still be a dumb career move for you because the constant traveling, socializing or presenting demands wears on you!

  3. Do You Know What You Love?

    Have you considered moving to a career that you love? If you find yourself unable to take that route, it’s because you have not taking the time to identify what you love doing!

    • Identify what you are good at

      Evaluate the feedback you get from colleagues or co-workers and use that to figure out what you are good at.

    • Identify your hobbies

      Evaluate your productive hobbies or part -time activities and use that to figure out what you like.

    • Analyze your Strengths and Weaknesses: Don’t just pick a career that you like or avoid careers that you dislike, take a balanced inventory of your likes and dislikes … Read this post to find out how!

What Is The Best Way To Figure Out Your Next Career Move?

Neo, you may download a FREE Report on “How To Make A Career Change”.

This free REPORT provides you with more information on how to choose the next career move!

Technical Support / Helpdesk Career Advice Column

In this post, I answered the question of which career is the best move after working as a Desktop Engineer.

If you have any question about this, be sure to post it as a comment on this page and I would answer it for you.




10 Responses to "What Is The Best Career Move for Technical Support Engineers?"

  1. Hamid (Amman, Jordan)   May 20, 2012 at 8:30 pm

    Do you have plans to get certifications in my position (Technical Support Engineer) ?

    ReplyTweet
    • ITCareerCoach   May 20, 2012 at 8:33 pm

      How is it over there in Amman, Jordan?

      You may want to look into MCSE / CISCO / Aplus Certifications

      ReplyTweet
  2. Pankaj Sharma   February 5, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    I have a diploma in computer Hardware & Networking from Jetking (Noida) and now I am purusing an MBA in Information Technology (IT) from SMU.

    I also have five years of experience in the IT sector with this profile…
    1- 1 year with local vendor (Ghaziabad).
    2- 6 months with Sify ISP in Agra.
    3- 1 year with College of IT & Management as an IT lab incharge.
    4- Now working with SKS Microfinance Ltd. As a IT-Associate.

    So kindly instruct me on what can I do to get a better career in IT?

    Thanking you

    ReplyTweet
  3. Rahul   December 22, 2010 at 1:11 am

    Hi!!!

    I am in the field of IT Hardware for the last 7 seven year, as a desktop support engineer.

    At this position I cannot make the right career move. Kindly advise me as to which field is a better prospect, server administration (Windows / Linux) or networking.

    I still cannot make out where my interest lies, so I can decide to go for server administration / network administration.

    Kindly advise me, as I am frustrated from desktop management and I wish to grow career wise and salary wise.

    Regards,

    Rahul

    ReplyTweet
    • IT Career Coach   December 22, 2010 at 8:14 am

      Since you cannot figure out where your interests lies, why don’t you invest some time researching or working on both fields so that you can properly assess how much you like one industry / field versus the other.

      #1: Spend some time reading Server Networking books for Windows vs. Linus and then figure out which of these two are more to your liking.

      #2: Look at your current skills and evaluate which career will be easier for you to follow. If your skills are currently stronger in Linux versus Windows then give a higher preference to Linux Networking and vice versa.

      #3: Look at the number of jobs posted daily in your city over the last 30 days or the next 30 days for either Linux / Windows Server Administration. Go to Craigslist.org and analyze the number of jobs in your State / Country for Linux versus Windows Server Administration.

      Use these three simple tests to figure which career will be a better fir for you.

      Your Love / Passion
      Your Current Skills / Learning Curve
      The Number of Job Postings / Marketability

      ReplyTweet
      • Rahul   December 23, 2010 at 11:16 am

        Once again thanks for your valuable advise,but I would be grateful to you if your could please suggest me from your end a particular course or a particular field in I.T.

        I would like to be versatile, where in I can get an opportunity to work oversea as such europe / USA.

        That is my main aim.

        Regards,

        ReplyTweet
        • IT Career Coach   December 23, 2010 at 3:46 pm

          A versatile course / career that allows you to work overseas in Europe / USA is Microsoft .NET Computer Programming.

          Software Developers that are not US Nationals are hired to work on us-based projects in high numbers.

          The process is facilitated by the H1B Visa Program.

          A Microsoft .NET programmer has access to a number of careers or jobs including: CRM, Business Analysis, Project Management, Web Development, Mobile Developmen t, Desktop Development, Database Programming, Data Analysis …

          Software Developers are also paid highly and that my friend is the most versatile, flexible or wel-paying job you can get

          ReplyTweet
  4. Jared   December 21, 2010 at 11:22 am

    I am currently in a Graduate program and work as a developer where most of my time is spent as second line support which I am unhappy with.

    Would transitioning to work more on projects or into a different role i.e. business analysis be a better career move given that the graduate program seems to be skilling us up to be people managers?

    ReplyTweet
  5. Martins   September 2, 2010 at 2:29 am

    I’m stuck! Graduated from an IT training in 2007 with several certs to include MCSA.

    I’ve worked as a contractor for approx 2 years but now I’m a perm for almost 3 years.

    I’m stuck in a helpdesk position but would love to transition to the network team.
    The old story applies no certs not job…no experince no job!…

    I;m stuck how do I make the job.

    Tried volunteering my time, asked for additional training, even asked took on additional tasks; nothing is getting me closer.

    Help!

    ReplyTweet
    • IT Career Coach   September 2, 2010 at 2:36 am

      You are stuck in a helpdesk position because you’re relying on certifications to get ahead … that is so old school ūüôā

      You need a deeper career analysis.

      1. Start by finding out what you enjoy doing in the IT Industry.
      2. Then make a six months, 1,2,3,4,5 year plan revolving around what you like doing and are good at
      3. Get some experience along those lines. It may have to be done on the job with your bosses permission or off the job
      4. Review other alternate career paths (technical writing, project management, database development, business analysis, data analysts, etc.)
      5. Pick a career path that is marketable, easy to learn by your standards and personally rewarding. Then start taking one step at a time in the direction of your new path.
      6. Don’t be in a hurry to get there … just put one foot in front of the other and place your future bets on practical skills & experience instead of certifications

      ReplyTweet

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