Computer Operators

Monitor and control electronic computer and peripheral electronic data processing equipment to process business, scientific, engineering, and other data according to operating instructions. Monitor and respond to operating and error messages. May enter commands at a computer terminal and set controls on computer and peripheral devices.

Median Annual Wage: $39,590

Education: Associate's degree (43%); High school diploma or equivalent (23%); Some college, no degree (21%)

Projected Growth: Decline (-3% or lower)

Related Job Titles: Information Technology Specialist; Computer Specialist; Computer Technician; Systems Operator; Computer Operator; Operations and Maintenance Technician; Software Technician; Computer Console Operator

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Computer Operators.

More Office and Administrative Support Careers

  • Monitor the system for equipment failure or errors in performance.
  • Respond to program error messages by finding and correcting problems or terminating the program.
  • Notify supervisor or computer maintenance technicians of equipment malfunctions.
  • Answer telephone calls to assist computer users encountering problems.
  • Record information such as computer operating time, problems that occurred, and actions taken.
  • Operate spreadsheet programs and other types of software to load and manipulate data and to produce reports.
  • Help programmers and systems analysts test and debug new programs.
  • Retrieve, separate and sort program output as needed, and send data to specified users.
  • Oversee the operation of computer hardware systems, including coordinating and scheduling the use of computer terminals and networks to ensure efficient use.
  • Read job set-up instructions to determine equipment to be used, order of use, material such as disks and paper to be loaded, and control settings.
  • Load peripheral equipment with selected materials for operating runs, or oversee loading of peripheral equipment by peripheral equipment operators.
  • Supervise and train peripheral equipment operators and computer operator trainees.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Computer Operators.

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Computer Operators.

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