These are but a fraction of the tasks a computer may be asked to perform. Computer personnel may be divided into several specialized categories. Refer here computer science for more information. Systems Analyst. This work involves analyzing the problem and designing a system which the computer can use to solve it. They have to work out what type of computer is necessary, how the information available should be fed into it and how the results should be presented.Bearing in mind the amount and type of data the computer will be given, what the customer proposes to do with the results and the likely direction of expansion and future development.
Networked PCs are more common these days, and they are operated by their users, e.g., market analysts, accounts clerks, nurses, archivists or tool setters. The computer operator is responsible for the actual running of the computer and is important in mainframe systems; he/she loads the magnetic disks or tapes which carry the program and the data, monitors the running of a program and is responsible for record keeping and storage. It is, however, a decreasing trade, now being replaced by systems support. Support staff install, maintain and update networked systems of PCs and workstations, and stand-alone PCs; they are responsible for both the hardware and the software.
A computer programmer composes the instructions and puts them into the particular computer language so that the computer can carry out the tasks in the way the systems analyst has designed.
He/she develops, tests and maintains large-scale software, frequently utilizing ‘library routines,’ written by programmers. He/she will work in teams, which include systems analysts, programmers and systems engineers. Much of the work is with people, and team skills are developed.
Data preparation operators organize the routine input of data into the programs, often via keyboards and screens (VDU5). Much of the work is now done by users, especially in commercial installations.
Modern, sophisticated packages run more efficiently if used by trained personnel. Trainers are employed by software vendors, by training companies, and by user companies for their staff. They need to be familiar with the packages at all levels, and have people and teaching skills, and may have to develop training materials.
Qualifications and Training
There are no hard academic skills demanded as employers tend to set their entry requirements. There are, however, a significant number of relevant courses and these do have set requirements.