What skills should an IT person have?

IT Support Denver


IT services remain one of the fastest growing jobs in the world, with a projected growth of over 10% in the next seven years. Because these computer and technology specialists are in such high demand, it’s imperative to know how to hire one. 


IT specialists aren’t just skilled in tech, either. They have a variety of soft skills that allow them to fit seamlessly within your company structure. Let’s take a look at the top skills every Information Technology (IT) professional should have before you hire IT Support in Denver.


While IT professionals can wear many hats, your first step should be determining what your own top priorities are as a company. Based on what is important to you, you can more closely match your hire to your needs. To do that, first you need to understand the major “categories” of IT professionals:


Types of IT Professionals

  • CIO/vCIO: A Chief Information Officer is often the highest-paid and strategically leaning member of an IT team. They will deal with high-level thinking that marries technology to the future of the company. They may also be responsible for building out an IT team. This role is almost always necessary within an SMB but the specific size and complexity of the company will determine whether a full-time CIO is necessary or a fractional CIO (vCIO) is a better option.
  • IT Director: An IT Director is in the trenches often doing work around security, compliance, alignment to standards and making sure that the vision for the CIO or vCIO is implemented in a positive way. This can mean reporting on project progress or help desk proficiency to the CIO who will in turn take this information to leadership. While an IT Director may be involved in the strategic conversations had by the CIO with other leadership, they are often working on the specific tactics in implementing that vision.
  • IT Engineer: An Engineer can be a very broad term in IT circles. There are different types of engineers, including software engineers, network administrators, development personnel, etc. True engineers are more involved in implementation on specific projects (i.e. cloud migration to Azure) than in the planning for the future state of the company. In certain organizations, a skilled engineer will be responsible for help desk when there are no current projects and at other times will be hyper focused on a project. The issue with this system is that this can often lead to an engineer being stretched thin or becoming inundated with small issues that are below their paygrade.
  • Help Desk Technician: Technicians are often the lowest paid on the totem pole of an IT organization. However, they are vital to the satisfaction of your internal employees. Technicians will often deal solely with break-fix issues. Their responsiveness and level of proficiency will determine whether your day-to-day “IT experience” is a positive one. Some of the onus also lands on the IT Director, who will usually be responsible for gauging the success of the technician(s) through metrics, satisfaction scores, etc.


No matter the organization, there is some need for all of these roles. The variable is whether in each case the specific roles should be fractionalized or hired as full-time employees.


In addition, there are two main factors to be looking for in each IT professional: Technical Skills and Soft Skills.


Technical Skills


Every IT person should have a range of technical skills at their disposal. Although some IT professionals specialize in certain areas, most have at least some background knowledge of technology, security, and general computer skills. Depending on their role and discipline, an IT specialist can help you with the following.


Writing code: Basic code writing is a skill that every IT professional should have. Although the position may not require in-depth coding skills, having a basic knowledge of HTML and other codes is important. For those hiring software engineers or web developers, proficiency in writing multiple codes is a must.


Knowledge of platforms: Working in tech requires these individuals to be flexible and versatile when working with various business platforms. Even if an IT specialist isn’t well-versed on the methodology that your business uses, they’ll be able to adjust quickly. Working in a fast-paced environment is common for specialists navigating an ever-changing field.


IT security: An IT professional can also assist you with setting up cybersecurity and software. Basic cybersecurity skills include installing firewalls, improving business security practices, and addressing general concerns.


Soft Skills


Although technical skills are critical to the success of every IT professional, soft skills are just as important. “Soft skills” refers to those skills that make an employee stand out – like communication, empathy, and teamwork. All of these skills are an integral part of the hiring process, as well. Take a look at the most important soft skills any IT professional should have below.


Interpersonal skills: IT professionals work alongside many different departments. This is why having good communication and interpersonal skills is essential for any person in IT. Being openly communicative about deadlines, issues, and delays helps every department run smoothly and on time. 


Timeliness: Sticking to deadlines and submitting work on time is important for any employee. However, IT specialists need to be especially prompt. Fixing cybersecurity and function issues right away keeps everything running smoothly. Additionally, managing large work batches and honoring delivery expectations can make or break a business.


Focused: Issues always happen when it comes to technology. Therefore it’s extremely important that IT professionals remain calm and understanding (even when everyone else is panicking!). A large part of every IT personnel’s job is working with frustrated people, whether they are customers or coworkers. That’s why it’s important that every IT person knows how to keep focused despite the hardships.

For more information on IT support in Denver, contact Elevate.