What Is a Computer Information Systems Manager?

Explore the career requirements for a computer information systems manager. Get the facts about the job duties, education requirements, career outlook and salary to determine if this is the right career for you. Schools offering Industrial Technology Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Does a Computer Information Systems Manager Do?

Computer information systems managers coordinate, develop and lead information technology activities in organizations. Their responsibilities are varied and may include coordinating upgrades to new computer systems and software, making sure the organization's computer systems are secure, and overseeing the work of other IT professionals within the company. They may also communicate with outside vendors to settle on fair prices for new equipment for their company and keep in contact with other company managers and executives. The table below outlines the general requirements for a career as a computer information systems manager.

Education Required Bachelor's degree, master's degree preferred
Education Field of Study Computer science, business administration with computer-related concentration
Key Responsibilities Lead organization's IT activities, implement information systems and new technologies, develop technical standards
Job Growth (2014-2024) 15% (for computer and information systems managers)*
Median Salary (2015) $131,600 (for computer and information systems managers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Is an Information Systems Manager?

An information systems manager coordinates, develops and leads the information technology activities of different types of organizations. In this position, you might also consult with other managers to implement information systems that will support operational and fiscal goals. An information systems manager can have other job titles, including chief security officer, systems development director, network manager, e-commerce director, chief technology officer and computer operations manager.

Your job may have additional responsibilities, such as evaluating and implementing new technologies, developing technical standards, determining which implementation strategies are best and performing technology-related cost-benefit analyses. You might also be responsible for consulting with clients, allocating resources or handling other business-related responsibilities.

What Degree Do I Need?

A bachelor's degree is typically the minimum requirement for this position; however, many employers prefer that you have a master's degree in a computer science field. Some prefer candidates with a master's degree in business administration (MBA) with a computer-related concentration. While you could be eligible for this position with a master's degree in a number of different technical fields, master's degrees in information systems and information systems management are available.

Master's degrees in information systems management cover concepts such as leadership, strategic planning, organizational management, information technology management and finance. Coursework also includes networking concepts, data mining, systems analysis, systems planning and database management. Additional areas of study could include information security, data administration, network management or e-commerce. This degree can be completed on campus or online.

What Can I Expect From the Job Market?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), information systems managers can expect to experience a job growth rate of 15% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). New workplace technologies, particularly wireless and mobile networks, may increase the need for information technology workers and create more jobs for managers. Job growth can also be attributed to the need for managers with technical expertise who can troubleshoot complicated technology and strengthen cyber security. The BLS noted that, as of 2015, managers with extensive work experience and insight into the latest technology should have the best job prospects.

What is the Annual Salary?

As of May 2015, the median annual salary for information systems managers was $131,600, although the BLS noted that salaries can differ greatly according to industry and expertise. Some of the highest paying industries for this profession included securities and commodity exchanges, securities and commodity contracts intermediation, and other information services.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Depending on your interests, you may want to pursue a career that involves working more closely with computer equipment, rather than a career in management. If that is the case, a job as a computer hardware engineer may be worth pursuing. These professionals are responsible for designing and creating new types of computer hardware, like routers, circuit boards, and processors. You could also look into a job as a computer programmer, which involves writing code that allow computer software and application programs to function properly. As a computer programmer, you may work with other computing professionals, like software developers and engineers. Both of these career paths require a bachelor's degree.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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