Computer operators are essential to the day-to-day operations of older mainframes and minicomputers. These computer systems consist of a network of smaller computer terminals (monitors and keyboards) hooked up to a central core that contains all the system's software and memory. Most of the older mainframes and minicomputers have a central control panel. While the computer is running, a computer operator watches closely for error lights on the console that may go on to indicate that the computer is not operating properly. If a light goes on or the computer stops, the operator must locate the problem and solve it. Operators maintain log books and operating records for the equipment and record all malfunctions and errors. If the computer system's files and programs are on discs or tapes, the operator has to see to it that the computer has been loaded with these storage media. Experienced operators may help computer programmers or systems analysts test programs.
For a personal computer network, the computer operator may assist a network administrator in ensuring all network connections are in place and that the network and the servers are running smoothly. They may also assist users in connecting computer peripherals, such as printers or lab equipment, or help new employees set up a computer.
Computer operators work for many businesses and industries, including banks, insurance companies, and manufacturers. They are also employed by government agencies, educational institutions, and companies that provide computer services.
The trend toward networking and the use of sophisticated software have enabled computers to perform tasks previously done by operators. With the advancement of technology and the move away from mainframe computers and toward personal computing networks, the jobs of computer operators are shifting from equipment maintenance to network support, user support, and database maintenance.
The are many employment opportunities for a data entry operator in different sectors. Some of the top sectors that require a data entry operator are listed below: