You’re more than ready to leave your dead-end job in the rearview mirror in route towards a career you love. Sure, it helped pay the bills and gave you some real-world experience, but you want to wake up in the morning and look forward to going to work.
Your analytical nature and love of technology has you thinking the information technology (IT) field is the perfect place to find employment. But with all of the precise skills and technical knowhow, you know you’d benefit from acquiring a formal education.
Could an IT management degree be the key to unlocking the career you’ve been dreaming about? Keep reading to find out!
The struggle to find qualified IT pros
Each year, IT staffing company Robert Half Technology publishes a report summarizing the technology hiring trends across America. And year after year, the report highlights the demand for qualified IT professionals.
The 2016 report is no exception, declaring that 60 percent of chief information officers (CIOs) find it somewhat or very challenging to find skilled IT professionals today. That combined with the fact that 85 percent of CIOs plan to hire IT professionals in the first half of 2016 and the issue is clear.
So how can you help fill the gap and become eligible to fill these vacancies? Earning an information technology (IT) management degree is a great start. Also known as a management information systems degree, the knowledge and training provided in this multi-faceted program can equip you for not just one, but several coveted tech positions.
Take a look at the chart below to learn more about the opportunities that could await after graduating.
Top 10 jobs for IT management degree holders
We used real-time job analysis software to examine nearly 70,000 IT management degree jobs posted over the past year.1 The data helped us identify the top 10 careers available for individuals with an IT management degree.
Get a taste of the job duties and earning potential associated with each position2:
1. Software applications developer
Median annual salary (2014): $95,510
Projected growth (2014-2024): 19% increase (much faster than average)
- Design or customize computer applications software
- Modify existing software to optimize operational efficiency or correct errors
- Evaluate software requirements and user needs to determine software feasibility
- Develop and employ software system testing and validation procedures
2. Computer systems analyst
Median annual salary (2014): $82,710
Projected growth (2014-2024): 21% increase (much faster than average)
- Analyze data processing problems to improve computer systems
- Develop and test system design procedures
- Consult with management to recommend software
- Enhance system compatibility so information can be shared
3. Network systems administrator
Median annual salary (2014): $75,790
Projected growth (2014-2024): 8% increase (as fast as average)
- Install and support an organization’s network system
- Monitor network to ensure availability to all system users
- Examine website functions to ensure performance without interruption
- Perform data backups and disaster recovery operations
4. Information security analyst
Median annual salary (2014): $88,890
Projected growth (2014-2024): 18% increase (much faster than average)
- Monitor networks for security breaches and investigating when one is detected
- Install and maintain software to protect sensitive information
- Simulate attacks to identify potential areas of vulnerability
- Develop security standards and best practices for the company
5. Computer user support specialist
Median annual salary (2014): $47,610
Projected growth (2014-2024): 13% (faster than average)
- Assist computer users with technical issues
- Resolve problems for clients in person, or via telephone or email
- Conduct computer diagnostics to detect technical problems
- Install equipment for employee use
6. Database administrator
Median annual salary (2014): $80,280
Projected growth (2014-2024): 11% increase (faster than average)
- Test and administer computer databases
- Coordinate changes and correct errors to computer databases
- Apply security measures to safeguard information
- Indicate user access levels for each segment of database
7. Software systems developers
Median annual salary (2014): $102,880
Projected growth (2014-2024): 13% increase (faster than average)
- Design, test and develop software to meet the needs of users
- Create each piece of an application and plan how the pieces will interact
- Conduct regular maintenance and testing to ensure programs are functioning properly
- Collaborate with other computer specialists to create the best software
8. Management analyst
Median annual salary (2014): $80,880
Projected growth (2014-2024): 14% increase (much faster than average)
- Advise managers on ways of increasing profitability for organizations
- Compile information about a problem or procedure that needs improvement
- Conduct onsite observations and interviews to identify the equipment and personnel needed
- Create reports and presentations to support recommendations to share with management
9. Information technology (IT) project manager
Median annual salary (2014): $127,640
Projected growth (2014-2024): 15% increase (much faster than average)
- Manage technology projects
- Supervise IT staff
- Delegate tasks to project personnel
- Monitor progress to meet deadlines, standards and budgets.
10. Computer programmer
Median annual salary (2014): $77,550
Projected growth (2014-2024): 8% decrease
- Create and test the code that allows computers to run properly
- Analyze user needs and develop software solutions
- Write computer programs to store, locate or retrieve data
- Conduct trial runs of programs and software applications
Qualify yourself for success
So what can you do with an information technology management degree? It turns out there’s a whole lot! With so many exciting career options, you won’t ever find yourself stuck in a dead-end job again.
Check out our IT Management Degree page to learn more about how this could set you up for success in the information technology field!
1 Burning-Glass.com (analysis of 67,782 IT management degree jobs, Apr. 01, 2015 – Mar. 31, 2016)
2 Salary data represents national, averaged earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries and employment conditions in your area may vary.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This article was originally published in June 2013. It has since been updated to reflect information that is relevant to 2016.
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