Salary and Career Info for Computer Systems Specialists

Computer systems specialists require some formal education. Learn about the degree programs, job duties and requirements to see if this is the right career for you.

Computers are not only here to stay, they are becoming more sophisticated every day. Consequently, there will always be a need for computer systems specialists. A bachelor's degree can open the door for you in this steadily growing field.

Essential Information

Computer systems specialists develop and implement solutions to network issues, system administration problems and application errors. Specialists troubleshoot systems and implement security protocols. The minimum requirement for a computer systems specialist is typically a 4-year degree in computer science or a related field of study.

Required Education Bachelor's degree in computer science or other relevant field
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 8% for network and computer systems administrators
Median Salary (2015)* $77,810 for network and computer systems administrators

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Salary

The salary of a computer systems specialist ranges depending upon degree and experience. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), median annual wages for network and computer systems administrators were $77,810 in May 2015. The lowest-paid ten percent earned $47,460 or less per year, and the top-paid ten percent earned more than $124,090 annually.

Computer Systems Specialist Career Information

Job Description

Computer systems specialists provide technical guidance for the development and troubleshooting of computer systems. They identify system data, hardware or software components required to meet user needs. They also develop guidelines for implementing secure systems to customers or installation teams. In addition, they monitor systems in order to identify potential system errors and document instructions and other system information. Finally, they evaluate factors such as compatibility, usability and cost in order to determine the best use of technology.

They are also responsible for overseeing the performance of LANs (local area networks), WANs (wide area networks), Internet and intranet systems and network segments. They work in large corporations, small businesses and government organizations

Career Outlook

The job market for computer systems specialists looks promising. According to the BLS, employment of network and computer systems administrators is expected to increase by 8% from 2014 to 2024, which is as fast as the average for all jobs in the U.S. Computer networks are an integral part of many businesses, and demand for these workers will increase as firms continue to invest in new technologies.

The increasing adoption of mobile technologies means that more establishments will use the Internet to conduct business online. This growth will translate into a need for systems administrators who can help organizations use technology effectively. Growth will also be driven by the increasing need for information security. As cyber attacks become more sophisticated, demand will increase for workers with security skills.

If you're interested in a career as a specialist in computer systems, you'll need a bachelor's degree in computer science or a similar or related field. According to the BLS, employment opportunities will increase at about the same rate as the national rate of all occupations for the foreseeable future.


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