For those who are fascinated by the power of technology, a career in information systems can be alluring. The right education can prepare students to pursue information systems management jobs that could lead to a lucrative and satisfying career.
Students aspiring to become a computer and information systems manager, sometimes called information technology managers or IT project managers, may find the Master of Science in Management Information Systems online program from the University of Alabama at Birmingham to be valuable. This program, along with meeting various other requirements, can lead you down the path to becoming a successful computer and information systems manager.
Let’s take a closer look at the steps to pursue this career choice:
1. Understand the job description
Computer and information systems managers have varied roles, from computer systems analysts and computer programmers to software developers and project managers. Generally, their duties involve computer-related activities around objectives created to ensure that a company’s computer and network systems are effective, reliable, and safe. To achieve this goal, the manager might create, carry out, and oversee technology plans. They also identify software needs and work to fill those gaps in addition to implementing patches and upgrades as necessary. Furthermore, information systems managers oversee general issues, troubleshoot problems as they arise, and offer technical support to a company’s various departments and teams.
Computer and information systems managers also assist in identifying the technology goals for an organization, then develop, coordinate, and implement the systems needed to reach them.
2. Analyze the job demand
Experts in computer and information systems management are highly important to nearly every type of business, as the ability to manage technology and information is critical to many industries. Because of this, the job market in this field has the potential to remain strong for years to come, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Especially in today’s increasingly connected and digital world, it’s crucial that companies be able to manage their technologies and to protect their data.
According to the BLS, the 10-year job outlook for computer and information systems managers is expected to increase by 11% between 2018 and 2028. This is much faster than the average growth rate for all occupations.
The job demand isn’t the only thing that can be appealing. The BLS reported that the median salary for computer and information systems managers in 2018 was $142,530, much higher than the national average.
3. Assess the necessary skills and requirements
Computer and information systems managers should have sound analytical abilities and a willingness to think on their feet and solve problems, sometimes as they come up. They also should have a strong understanding of network systems and technology best practices.
Most computer and information systems manager positions require at least a bachelor’s degree, but the BLS noted that many professionals in these types of roles also have graduate degrees. For this reason, professionals who are aiming for this career path may find great benefit in the master’s in MIS online program.
4. Pursue a Master of Science in Management Information Systems from the University of Alabama at Birmingham
While students who earned their Bachelor of Science in Information Systems are on the right track to pursue a Master of Science in Management Information Systems, other prospective students who didn’t earn this degree can begin working toward their MS MIS through the school’s bridge program. This program consists of two courses that aim to bring students up to speed in their understanding of networks, computers, and databases:
IS 591: Introduction to Networking and Computer Programming. Students who don’t have a background in enterprise systems and programming will get a close look at the environment in which developers create software.
IS 592: Systems Analysis and Database. Geared toward students who don’t have experience with systems analysis or database administration, this course gives individuals an understanding of how information technology, data storage, and data retrieval come together to create information systems.
Management Information Systems Core Courses
Once students have a sound grasp on these concepts (whether by way of the bridge program or a bachelor’s degree in MIS), they move on to the Management Information Systems core courses. These cover important topics like:
- Cyber security
- Data science
- Information technology and IT project management
- Business strategy and how it relates to information technology
- Social media and how virtual communities have changed business
- IT governance and management
Beyond the six core courses, students in the Collat School of Business’ master’s in MIS online program will choose a concentration in Cyber Security Management, IT Management, or Business Analytics.
Students who follow the Cyber Security Management path will take courses related to mitigating threats and maintaining strong cyber security, managing information security policies and resources, and digital forensics.
Those who pursue the IT Management concentration can learn about web analytics and how to interpret data, how to plan and budget for technology upgrades and advancements, and leadership in information technology.
In the Business Analytics concentration, students can learn about the fields of business analytics and data science and how to use data to drive business decision-making.
To learn more about how pursuing your master’s in MIS online through the University of Alabama at Birmingham can support your career path in information systems management, reach out to an enrollment advisor today.