Help Desk Specialist How to Hire, Salary Data, and Job Descriptions

A Help Desk Specialist spends a lot of time being on a computer and learning all the ins and outs of the tech that they work with. They provide technical support to those who are experiencing issues with their computer hardware or software. A help desk specialist needs to be proficient in IT and love all things technology. 

Help desk specialists assist customers who need help with software/computer issues, are experts at their company’s software or hardware so they can walk customers through the steps needed to fix their problems, and provide high-quality customer service at all times with customers. Experience in IT and project management software is preferred, as are basic computer skills. 

Sample job description #1

Primary duties

  • Diagnoses and troubleshoots end user desktop application issues and provides appropriate solution. Able to troubleshoot complex technical issues and develop easy to understand solutions
  • Follow-up with end users to provide status updates
  • Performs account management and maintenance for various applications and systems (e. g., creates or modifies user accounts and permissions, and performs password resets)
  • Communicates with customers at all levels of technical and non-technical
  • Works collaboratively with people across the organization
  • Support for PCs, laptops, printers, cell phones, tablets, etc.
  • Supports end users in their use of applications such as Microsoft Office, Deltek, Ultipro, CAD Software (i.e., Autodesk Bentley, etc.) including installation, modification, and repair
  • Troubleshoots networks, servers, hardware systems, operating systems, and application technical issues
  • Creates and manages technical documentation
  • Assists the engineering team with project implementation
  • Ensures compliance with all Policies and Procedures

Education and requirements

  • Minimum of 3-5 years experience in MSP field or technical support level 2 or higher
  • Minimum of 3-5 years experience in System Administration, Switching, Compliance, Microsoft Active Directory, and MSP related service offerings
  • Professional, teachable, willing to learn, and open minded
  • A team player, courteous, pleasant to work with
  • Experience with installation and support of various CAD applications (i.e., Autodesk, Bentley, etc.)
  • Demonstrated knowledge in Microsoft server configuration and administration including Active Directory
  • One or more of the following certifications: A+, MS Desktop Administrator, Network+
  • Excellent organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills (both oral and written) and experience with direct client communication
  • Experienced in performing needs-assessment and making solution recommendations
  • Ability to work in a team environment and demonstrate strong problem-solving skills
  • Ability to multi-task and work multiple projects/issues simultaneously
  • Some physical work required such as installing and managing cables
  • Able to lift up to 50 lbs. servers
  • Availability to work weekends
  • Must be able to work in the US
  • Valid Driver’s License
  • Ability to travel
  • A team player, courteous, pleasant to work with

Preferred qualifications

  • Professional, teachable, willing to learn, and open minded
  • Intermediate experience in System Administration, IT Security, VPN Configuration, Routing and Switching, Compliance, Virtualization, Microsoft Active Directory

Sample job description #2


  • Virtually all PC support
  • Password Resets
  • Help Desk will communicate with clients via email, phone, or ticketing system
  • Answer incoming calls, create tickets
  • Evaluate and prioritize IT tickets to support customers remotely
  • As a Help Desk, you will coordinate escalation of unresolved or emergency support issues
  • Work with clients to ensure client satisfaction and resolve complaints


  • Desktop/Laptop experience
  • Printers, Fax & Scanner
  • Desktop and Laptop peripherals
  • Active Directory
  • Network (Coordination, with Vendors and other IT Teams, small scale jobs)
  • Server (Coordination, with Vendors and other IT Teams, small scale jobs)
  • Cabling (Coordination, with Vendors and other IT Teams, small scale jobs)
  • Video Conferencing (Coordination, with Vendors and other IT Teams, small scale jobs)
  • Wi-Fi Connection (Coordination, with Vendors and other IT Teams, small scale jobs)
  • VoIP (Coordination, with Vendors and other IT Teams, small scale jobs)
  • Experience with installing new software
  • Report, coordinate, and escalate issues/errors to existing application or corporate IT Support teams
  • Knowledge in Windows operating systems, Networking, desktop services

Sample job description #3

The Help Desk Specialist position provides support to users by researching and answering questions, resolving problems, providing resources.

Job duties

  • Provides answers to clients by identifying problems, researching answers, guiding client through corrective steps
  • Improves client references by writing and maintaining documentation
  • Participates in development of client training programs by identifying learning issues and recommending instructional language
  • Accommodates client disabilities by recommending devices and techniques
  • Avoids legal challenges by monitoring compliance with service agreements
  • Improves system performance by identifying problems and recommending changes
  • Updates job knowledge by participating in educational opportunities and maintaining personal networks
  • Accomplishes information systems and organization mission by completing related results as needed
  • Skills/Qualifications: Problem Solving, Help Desk Experience, Phone Skills, Customer Service, Training, Verbal Communication, Coaching, Documentation Skills, Network Troubleshooting, Networking Knowledge, Product Knowledge, etc.


  • Must be A+ Certified
  • Related Helpdesk experience
  • Strong on-site and remote troubleshooting skills
  • The ability to lift 50lbs.

Average salary and compensation

The average salary for a help desk specialist is $50,500 in the United States. Position salary will vary based on experience, education, company size, industry, and market.

LocationSalary LowSalary High
Phoenix, Arizona$50,200$67,950
Los Angeles, California$56,650$76,650
Denver, Colorado$47,200$63,900
Washington, DC$57,500$77,800
Miami, Florida$47,000$63,600
Orlando, Florida$43,350$58,650
Tampa, Florida$43,800$59,250
Atlanta, Georgia$45,950$62,150
Chicago, Illinois$52,800$71,450
Boston, Massachusetts$57,100$77,250
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota$45,500$61,550
New York City, New York$60,100$81,300
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania$48,950$66,200
Dallas, Texas$47,650$64,450
Houston, Texas$47,200$63,900
Seattle, Washington$54,950$74,350
National Average$42,950$58,100

Sample interview questions

  • Are IT skills important to a help desk service role?
  • Do you have good communication skills?
  • Are you able to communicate with a troublesome customer, and how would you resolve their issues?
  • You receive a call from a user stating their monitor has gone black, how would you resolve this?
  • What should you do when you aren’t able to answer a caller’s question?
  • If the customer is dissatisfied with your service, what should be done?
  • If a customer calls with audio problems on their computer, how would you troubleshoot this problem?
  • What is the difference between RAM and ROM?
  • Are you familiar with our product/software?
  • Are you comfortable talking for long periods of time?
  • How hard is it for you to explain complex issues in a simple manner?

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