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Top five strengths in relation to a career in IT – as systems engineer

A systems engineer is supposed to ensure that the entire system meets the needs of the customers. This is usually done through several tasks which include stating the problem, looking for alternatives, designing and launching the system, assessing the performance of the system and continually evaluating the system. To be able to do all these, a systems engineer must have the following strengths.

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Time management skills

A good systems engineer has good time management skills in order to get things done at the right time. Time is essential in performing job tasks and achieving personal and organizational goals. A system engineer has many tasks which are geared to ensuring that the customers are satisfied by the system. Proper planning of activities is therefore essential. All activities should be done in their scheduled time and completed in time. The time given for each activity should depend on its sensitivity and magnitude. For instance, installing a new system requires much time since it is very sensitivity.

A new system should be installed by someone who is very cautious and has enough experience in system installation. The systems engineer should therefore schedule activities in their appropriate time and with the right technician. Furthermore, having the capability to multitask is essential as it saves time. Sometimes, problems or job tasks may increase in number and multitasking becomes very useful in solving them on time.

Problem solving skills

Problem solving skills are very important to a systems engineer. For instance, when the server malfunctions or goes off and yet there is power in the sockets, it is the responsibility of the systems engineer to solve the problem. The systems engineer’s capability of troubleshooting effectively and efficiently will therefore solve the problem which has occurred in time. The systems engineer should be quick to respond to problems and hence adequate troubleshooting skills are essential. For example, a problem with the server requires a fast response to resolve the problem and this should come from the systems engineer.

Patience

This is a virtue which systems engineers should have in order to achieve the organizational goals. When the systems engineer has already stated the problem, designed and launched the system much time is required to evaluate the performance of the new system. Patience is therefore essential when evaluating the system since it takes much time for the system to produce results. Without patience, the system engineer might resolve to changing the system to another one, yet not knowing that the previous system would have provided the best results. Furthermore, changing the system from one type to another is costly and this will cost the organization much money.

Negotiation skills

When it comes to purchasing the right equipment for the system negotiation skills are required. The systems engineer should be able to convince the senior management personnel to buy the best equipment for the system which are affordable. For instance, the organization might refuse to buy expensive equipment and yet there are enough funds, the systems engineer should therefore come in with strong negotiating skills in order to persuade them to purchase the equipment. The senior management personnel might not see the importance of buying that particular equipment since most of them do not understand how the system works. The systems engineer should therefore make them see the importance of purchasing that equipment.

Communication skills

The systems engineer should have good communication skills to achieve organizational objectives. Good listening and communication qualities are essential for a good leader. The supporting staff might be experiencing problems at the workplace or have innovative ideas on how to solve problems affecting the system. For instance, changing the computer software or hardware to one that is expensive but has very few problems. Without proper communication between the system engineer and the supporting staff tasks will not be done appropriately and the system will not meet the needs of the customers.

Computer support specialists

Employment outlook

They are usually employed in a large number of organizations which may include financial institutions, government agencies, insurance companies, learning institutions, hospitals, and many other organizations which use computers.

The employment of computer support specialist is expected to grow by 2016. In 2006, there were more than 552,000 jobs in United States of America and this number is expected to grow by 13% before 2016 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2007). As technology advances it also becomes more complicated to utilize it. Many individuals and organizations are expected to adopt the new technology which is sophisticated thereby increasing the demand for these employees.

Responsibilities

  • Answering customer inquiries about computer hardware and software problems.
  • Keeping and maintaining daily communication records regarding the problems and the actions taken to resolve them.
  • Installing and doing minor repairs to software, hardware or peripheral equipment, using the given specifications.
  • Setting up computers for use by other employee and ensuring there is proper installation of the required software and operating systems.
  • Overseeing the performance of all the computer systems of the organization daily.

Types of positions available

There are usually two types of computer support specialist; help desk technicians and technical support specialists. The responsibility of a help desk technician is to respond to customer inquiries through email messages or telephone calls while that for a technical support technician is to respond to inquiries within the organization.

Education required

The individual should have a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science or information technology. College graduates with excellent computer skills may also be considered in some cases.

In addition, the ideal individual should have excellent analytical, communication and problem solving skills. Similarly, they should be innovative, creative and good team players. Customer service skills are essential and should be excellent.

Salary range

The starting salary ranges between $28,720 and $39,230 per year.

Essay on education and past work and life experiences

Education provides knowledge and understanding of the skills required to perform a job task. In colleges, we are taught the theories and concepts which are usually applicable at the workplace. For instance, the procedures for installing computer software, hardware and other peripheral devices, and the steps for troubleshooting a system which is malfunctioning are learned. With the training provided we are able to apply the knowledge acquired in the classrooms to the real life situations.

The life experiences help in putting to test the knowledge acquired from the learning institutions by providing challenges and hence perfecting the appropriate skills. For example, when my computer breaks down it provides me with an opportunity to apply the knowledge gained from college. To solve the computer problem the knowledge acquired from college becomes of much assistance in providing the troubleshooting procedures. With continuous application of the knowledge, the appropriate skills are perfected.

At the workplace in future, the knowledge and skills acquired will be of much assistance in solving problems. For instance, if a computer breaks down at the workplace and the computer technician is not around my skills will be of much help in troubleshooting and solving the problem. This will therefore save much time and money which would have been spent on the computer expert consultant.

Education trains an individual how to reason and make short or long term decisions. The large number of theories and concepts learned in colleges help in opening up the mind of an individual and hence broaden the horizon of thinking and reasoning. This enables an individual facing a problem to think precisely on the possible alternatives which would solve the problem efficiently and effectively. For example, there was a time my computer broke down and after using and exhausting all the possible troubleshooting methods which I knew and had used them, it still was not repaired.

The other option which I had not used was consulting a computer expert and by using this option my computer got repaired. Without education and experiences, the possible alternatives in solving the computer problem would have been narrowed down to a very small number. In the workplace, problems might occur and after exhausting all the methods of troubleshooting, it is not resolved and this therefore makes the advice from an expert the only option. Education trains us to think and reason thereby leading to the arrangement and application of possible methods for solving a crisis from the cheapest to the expensive one. The advice from an expert therefore becomes the last option since it is expensive.

The behavior and attitude towards things in life are molded by education and experience. They both help a person to change attitude and behavior for the better. For example, during my life in college there was a time I misused my personal finances on luxurious things and thus became broke. My parents refused to send me additional money for one week and this made me to rely on my friends for upkeep. It is not bad to rely on your friends when in trouble, but in my case I brought the problem on my own and could have avoided it.

This was therefore not a good thing for me but it helped me to find better ways of avoiding this kind of financial problems. In college we were taught about financial management and using the concepts learned, planning and budgeting for all my finances was made easier. In a workplace, borrowing money from your work colleagues is not forbidden but when it becomes a habit it is usually annoying to your work colleagues. It is therefore important to adopt and maintain proper etiquette at the workplace, the habit of borrowing money from your work colleagues should be avoided in order to coexist well at the workplace. By proper planning and budgeting for all my finances the habit of borrowing money from work colleagues is taken care of and will not interfere the workplace relationships.

Furthermore, with education and life experiences, a person is given an opportunity to evaluate his weaknesses and strengths and hence adopt new ways to reduce the weaknesses and enhance the strengths. For example, I had a weakness which was the strong desire for luxurious things and this made me spent much money in purchasing them. However, the financial problems which I experienced taught me a lesson and made me to become cautious when spending money. This made me to plan and budget for all my needs thereby enhancing my management and problem solving skills. In a workplace, strong management skills are essential in order to get things done in time and save money.

For an organization to run smoothly and hence achieve its objectives, the management personnel must have strong problem solving skills in order to solve the problems which come up effectively and at the required time. In a future work, my skills will therefore make me a dependable employee who can easily get promoted to the management job status. In addition, education gives me the capability to set my goals in life and even put in place ways of achieving them. It enables me to define my own career objectives and this therefore becomes a motivation for me to put more effort when performing my job tasks thereby becoming a dependable worker at the workplace.

In the learning institutions, there are much social activities amongst the students. In colleges, different people from different social and economic backgrounds, and different religions come together to learn.  The students are able to interact and learn the ways of other cultures. This therefore teaches the students how to socialize with other students and with different communities. For example, in college I had friends who were Muslims and I am a Christian, they taught me the different ways of Islam and I the different Christian ways.

By learning and understanding the laws of other different religions, it becomes easy to avoid conflict with people from other religions. In a workplace, we do not expect all work colleagues to be from the same religion, there may be work colleagues from other religions and from the knowledge gained through social interactions in colleges with different people, peaceful coexistence becomes achievable. Without the learning institutions, the chances of meeting and interacting with people from other religions are reduced. The colleges therefore provide people with an opportunity to interact with other cultures thereby enhancing good relationships at the workplace.

In conclusion, education and experiences are therefore essential in making an individual a good and respectable employee. They both enable a person to set and achieve personal goals and even interact and coexist well with work colleagues. They help a person to understand his or her own weaknesses and strengths and even in finding ways to improve the strengths and reduce the weaknesses. Without them a person will not do well in a workplace environment.

Reference List

Bureau of Labor Statistics, (2007). Computer support specialists and systems administrators. Retrieved May 26, 2009 from http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos268.htm

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