Careers for Graduates in Masters in Information Technology
Is information technology a good career? No one can deny the fact that technology is at the heart of almost every aspect of modern life. From work to health to being social, it seems no one can do without technology these days. People use technology (computers, smartphones, and video games) to share, access, retrieve, store and manipulate information. This is the essence of the field known as information technology.
Information technology began to take shape during the mechanical age of information technology (1450-1840) with the invention of mechanical computers like the Pascaline, invented by Blaise Pascal, and the difference engine, developed by Charles Babbage. The first digital computer, the Mark 1, was created in 1940 at Harvard University in the electromechanical age (1840-1940). Right now we are in the electronic age of information technology (1940-present), where we are enjoying digital computers and high-speed internet connections. It also happens to be the age to enjoy a career in information technology, especially if you have a master's degree.
Many people are studying a master’s in information technology because there are a lot of career opportunities in information technology, especially if you are highly qualified.
Information technology benefits everyone, especially people in the business field, so it makes more sense that many choose to pursue to the level of getting a master's. As a professional in this field, your skills are in high demand because businesses need information technology to increase productivity; some companies even need it so that they can function. The average information technology salary for an information systems manager is about $135,000 annually, according to a report by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, so it is also a lucrative career.
A handful of specific career areas fall under the umbrella of Information Technology. This will give you some versatility when looking for a career in IT. Meredith Ruble, CFO at The Noodle Companies.
What skills are required to work in information technology?
The skills required depends on which job you are applying for and what you studied during your master's degree. Different fields lead to various information technology careers, and we will take a look at some of them and the skills needed to succeed, along with your degree.
Application development (computer programming)
You need computer science and math skills to succeed as a computer programmer. These skills work hand in hand to enable you to write programs using a programming language of your choice (or one the organization uses), such as C++, C#, Java, and Python, as well as understand data structures and algorithms.
Computer programmers also need strong logical and analytical skills. This is because you will run into some problems that will require you to think outside of the box and in a structured way, especially when debugging a program.
Knowledge of computer programming is required because employers will ask you to develop different systems using a variety of programming languages. To develop information systems that are effective, strong technical skills are also a must. On top knowing information technologies such as systems design, database programming, and networking, you should also be able to visualize how your solutions will be implemented in the organization.
Analytical and problem-solving skills are also needed because you will deal with complex problems, analyze them, and break them down to find a solution.
Data science and analytics
As a data scientists, you need programming skills so you can do statistics, analyze large data sets and develop the necessary tools for better data science. Quantitative skills are a must because you must be able to understand how complex systems behave by analyzing the data that they output naturally or by conducting experiments.
As someone working in the communications technology industry, you will need strong communication and technical skills. The ability to analyze problems and solve them quickly is also required and should be combined with the desire and determination to help others with their problems.
To succeed in this information technology career, you need to have a solid foundation of how computer networks operate. This includes reliable knowledge about the core concepts, such as addressing and routing. Troubleshooting skills are also needed because so many things can go wrong in a network, and you need to know how to figure out where and how to solve them. Some knowledge of hardware configuration is also required.
As a cybersecurity professional, you need to have deep knowledge of computer programming and the ability to think like a hacker so that you can fend off any attacks launched by cybercriminals. Strong knowledge of networks, software, and hardware is a must. You must be able to combine problem-solving skills with a forensic approach to it as well. You also need to be able to analyze infrastructure and point out any vulnerabilities and suggest solutions on how to solve them.
Geographic information systems
Employers usually look for candidates with a strong desire to work in this field. To succeed, though, you need to have maths skills that will allow you to analyze data and statistics. You must also possess the ability to manipulate complex databases and spreadsheets. There is some specialized software that is used in this field, like ArcGIS and ESRI, that you need to be familiar with. Other than that communication, teamwork, project management, problem-solving, and analytical skills are a requirement.
Information technology career paths
In this information technology careers list, we will briefly look at some of the jobs your masters in information technology. You will be working mostly with business technology and can expect to have some leadership position, as a manager or team leader.
Analytics and business intelligence
This job role is about furthering an organization's efforts to collect and analyze data and helping them put the data into proper practical use to maximize the organization's efficiency. This can involve the implementation of new systems, policies, and procedures from scratch.
Big data jobs involve helping a company expand its analytics initiatives. People in big data usually work as a team that includes data engineers, system architects, information technology/operations managers, business analysts, and data scientists, to name a few.
Geographic information systems
Geographic information systems are used to analyze spatial and geographical data for a variety of purposes, including healthcare and market research. As a GIS manager, your job will be to look after the people who use these systems.
Cybersecurity professionals prevent cyber attacks that are designed to compromise systems, networks, and data belonging to an organization or individual. A cybersecurity professional fends off attacks from cybercriminals aimed at exploiting information technology.
The role of network specialist or network administrator depends on the size and type of organization. But basically, your job includes making sure the organization's network is functioning correctly and is secure.
Software engineers are responsible for coding, debugging, and testing computer programs in organizations. Software engineers either develop programs for organizations or they personalize any third party software that the organization has acquired to suit the organization’s specifications.
Information systems engineering
The primary role in this information technology career path is to create, implement, and maintain systems that are used to collect and analyze data.
Information technology project management
Information technology project managers are in charge of information technology projects. They do this by planning, creating budgets, hiring employees and making sure that the project is on track. Their job also includes keeping clients and upper management updated on the progress of the project.
Decision support systems
When working in decision support systems (DSS), you help organizations develop and use decision support tools or methods. This means working in this information technology career makes you support staff for senior and mid-level managers, helping them gather and analyze data using intelligence systems.
This information technology career path involves developing, implementing and managing systems that allow health institutions to keep track of patients who use their services.
Information technology professional certification
For graduates to stand out in information technology, they can get additional qualifications known as certifications that offer them a slight advantage over their competitors in the job market.
MIT job path certifications
Not only do these certifications signal to employers that you went the extra mile, but they also provide you with the experience and tools necessary to succeed in that specific discipline.
Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
This certification comes from the Project Management Institute (PMI) and tells employers that you can manage projects effectively, even though you have little to no experience in project management.
Cisco Certified Networking Professional (CCNP) Routing and Switching
Cisco certified networking professional routing, and switching is a must for anyone planning to become networking professional. This certificate will show employers that you can install, configure, and troubleshoot Cisco switches and routers.
Project Management Professional (PMP)
This certification is also offered by PMI and trains you to be an efficient project manager who can increase the success rate of projects.
Governance of Enterprise Information Technology (CGEIT)
Since many organizations don’t have a clear understanding of how Enterprise Information Technology Governance can manage risk, this certification offers you in-depth knowledge of the GEIT Framework, from its implementation to its optimization to its evaluation.
Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)
Many information technologies and business systems have vulnerabilities, and this certification is about training you to expose them, fix them, and then develop policies that will ensure that everyone in the organization doesn't compromise them.
Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL)
The ITIL framework is a popular framework used by many information technology project managers. Getting this certification shows employers that you have a strong understanding of the ITIL framework and the information technology life cycle.
Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
This certification is meant to demonstrate your ability as a security expert. Demand for security experts in the information technology industry is high, so this is an excellent certification for your career in information technology.
Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC)
This certification prepares individuals, especially project managers and information technology experts to use the correct IS (Information Systems) controls to assess business and information technology risks and implement plans and strategies to manage them best.
Software proficiency certifications
Many businesses use specific software for their day-to-day operations, and these certifications let employers know that you are familiar with the software that they use.
AWS Certified Solutions Architect
If you want to demonstrate to employers that you can design and develop scalable systems, this certification is for you. The need for AWS certifications is growing, making this a wise investment for your information technology career path.
Citrix Certified Professional - Virtualization (CCP-V)
This certification is the latest offered by Citrix and demonstrates that you can use some Citrix technologies to deploy applications and virtual desktops.
VMWare Certified Advanced Professional 6
VMWare certified advanced professional 6 is an industry-recognized certification that demonstrates that you have a strong understanding of vSphere V6 infrastructures and can deploy and manage them.
Oracle Certified Professional (OCP) MySQL 5.6 Developer
Oracle certified professional is a certification offered by Oracle and shows that you can develop applications that can run on MySQL database servers.
Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD)
These are a group of certifications for Application Lifecycle Management, SharePoint Application, Web Application, and Windows Store Apps. Since Microsoft offers them, you know they are industry-recognized, and candidates who have them are in high demand.
Information Technology Masters salaries
What is the average information technology career salary you can expect if you have a master’s in information technology? We have done the research and uncovered the following annual salaries based on the major cities in the United States:
- New York City: $65,196 - $110,583
- Los Angeles: $39,521 - $137,662
- Chicago: $38,129 - $140,882
- Austin: $33,728 - $130,124
- Philadelphia: $28,754 - $113,548
- Phoenix: $28,753 - $111,994
- Boston: $47,332 - $151,722
- San Francisco: $45,840 - $129,221
So there you have it; everything you need to know about your career paths after you graduate with a master's in information technology. As you can see, there are many information technology career paths for you instore. Combine that with the high information technology salary you might receive; it makes a master's in information technology worth pursuing.
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