Are you looking for a job as an IT technician or hiring one for your business? Whether you are a candidate ready to start your IT career and a company seeking the best employee, you must know the top qualities of a support technician.

The top qualities of a help desk technician include being: 

  • A quick and constant learner
  • Customer and service-oriented
  • A good communicator
  • An analytical thinker
  • Empathetic
  • A team player
  • A problem solver 
  • Curious
  • Having technical knowledge

There is more to the position of the technician than just having some computer skills. Generally speaking, a successful help desk technician should be good at interacting with people, have comprehensive technical skills, and be able to follow procedures. Continue reading for more about these key qualities. 

  1. A quick and constant learner

A help desk technician must be able to perpetually learn on the fly. Technologies are changing and evolving all the time, hence why technicians must stay on top of them. 

Great technicians are like engineers–never thinking that they know everything and always updating their knowledge. This is particularly important for the help desk because different clients from different industries work with different technologies, so you need technicians who are flexible.  

  1. A good communicator

Communication is key while working at the help desk. Technicians must speak with many people including clients, their fellow team members, and management. A person with lackluster communication will most likely fail at this job. 

A technician’s communication style should be clear enough that everyone understands exactly what they mean. They must explain a problem without missing important details. This applies to both written and oral communication. In the absence of clear communication, the possibility of failing a project or getting into trouble with a client is very high.  

  1. Analytical thinking

Since people working the helpdesk are technical specialists, they must have an analytical mindset. This gives them the ability to investigate a problem and find the ideal solution in a timely and efficient manner. Moreover, analytical technicians can understand systems and structures–the core of the help desk. 

Service desk technicians should approach each task with an analytical mind to develop the best solutions for clients. By thinking analytically, they will collect and analyze information, solve problems and make decisions.

  1. Being Empathetic

Empathy is the ability to intrinsically understand and care for others’ feelings and experiences. In the context of customer service and help desk support, this means putting yourself in the customer’s shoes.

Empathy is so crucial for the job of a help desk technician because the role is truly one of servicing clients and reassuring them that their specific problem is understood. Anyone communicating with clients must have this quality, otherwise, they leave customers feeling anxious about how seriously their issue is being handled. 

Showing empathy for customers can result in: 

  • Clients feeling like the company sincerely listens to and caters to their pain points. 
  • Clients knowing for certain that their concerns are being treated with the utmost respect and attention.
  • Clients feeling like the company is doing everything to help them.
  1. A team player

Unfortunately, it’s often common for technicians to prefer working alone as opposed to working in teams. But the reality is, the service desk can’t function properly as a one-man show. 

An ideal support team will collaborate and help each other when others are confused or needing to update their skillset. Help desk technicians must maintain a strong relationship with other colleagues as well as with the management. 

So if you are currently in the market for a technician, ensure that this person is a team player and can work well with other people.  Beware of signs that a candidate will have a lone wolf mentality. A huge red flag is if a potential hire has an egotistical communication style. He or she might have some trouble when it comes to getting on with other people in the MSP environment. 

  1. Customer service oriented

Help desk technicians work at the help desk, therefore their main task is to help of course. That’s a simple way to never forget that their entire role is oriented around the experience of the customer. Their daily work includes interacting with clients which requires being pleasant and having supportive social skills. 

Great customer service, in particular, means helping the clients, not just selling or servicing them. A technician must understand the frustration of the customer and be compassionate about how they feel. 

  1. A problem solver

At the end of the day, solving problems is the core component of a help desk technician’s role. And as the world gets more advanced, the complexity of technical problems increases as well. 

This requires technicians to stay on top of the latest technologies and apply their logical mind for problem-solving. They should be able to use their expertise to figure out a solution and resolve an issue swiftly.

  1. Technical knowledge

Technical skills and qualifications are still the first things companies are looking for when selecting a help desk technician. Most IT companies know what abilities potential help desk technicians need to have to get a job in their organization. 

Just keep in mind though that there are numerous types of qualifications and certifications a technician can have. None of them however should be a requirement as most of the best IT workers are self-taught. 

Nonetheless, a great help desk technician should have worked with a range of different technologies and have various experiences they can call upon. In addition to theoretical technical knowledge, a service desk technician should know how to apply what they know in practice. Both hands-on learning and practical knowledge are truly what the help desk needs. 

Finally, the main skills a technician should have are computer troubleshooting and knowing documentation. But techs shouldn’t be discouraged if they lack technical skill in some areas as their company may be able to mentor them. 

Conclusion of Top Qualities for Help Desk Technicians

The most successful help desk technicians and IT support specialists fall into one of these cases: 

  • They have experience working in high pressure situations with customers.
  • They understand technology.
  • They have hands-on experience with computer repair and troubleshooting.
  • They are able to learn quickly.
  • They understand users’ needs and problems. 
  • They follow procedures.
  • They relate technological aspects to the problems of the users.
  • They think, react and resolve sudden problems quickly.
  • They know the right things to say to calm down stressed-out clients.
  • They are personable, friendly and accommodating.
  • They have experience multitasking in various situations. 
  • They can remain calm while dealing with people.

If you want to become a help desk technician or so called support engineer, you definitely read our guide on how to get a job as an IT help desk technician!

Requirements for a Help Desk Technician

The main requirements for the help desk technician are:

  • Being able to solve technical problems and work independently. 
  • Being able to interact and collaborate with the team.
  • Mentoring junior staff members if the team member is a senior technician.
  • Keeping good ticket notes and documentation.
  • Keeping all logins, passwords, network addresses, web addresses and license keys in order.

Requirements also range depending on the level of the technician:

  1. Level or Tier 1 – Requires customer service experience and knowledge of software, printers and mail.
  2. Level or Tier 2 – Requires having customer service experience and knowledge of networking, security, servers, PowerShell and routers. They should also excel at advanced troubleshooting.
  3. Level or Tier 3 – Requires project work experience, knowledge of server setup, infrastructure, network engineering, virtualization, migrations, creating security policies and cybersecurity consultations.

Generally speaking, a level 1 engineer is a good entry level job in the IT industry with promising career growth. Often you only need to have experience working with Microsoft 365.  

Are you looking for a job as a technician? We got you covered! Apply for one of our available positions here. If you are an MSP and want to know more about our staffing offerings, check them out here