Computer Systems Analyst Opportunities for Advancement

The position of computer systems analyst lends itself to many other opportunities for advancement within the field of information technology (IT). These jobs come with higher pay and more opportunities to be creative.

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Progression in the Career of a Computer Systems Analyst

In the position of computer systems analyst, one looks at a company's current computer system and makes suggestions to increase efficiency and encryption, as well as incorporates any new technology that will help improve the system. This job is conducive to many opportunities within the information technology (IT) field. Positions where one is involved with designing new technologies and implementing new systems, as well as management jobs, are available to computer systems analysts looking for a change. Most of these job titles only require a bachelor's degree, typically in computer science; however, a master's is often preferred in all IT positions.

Job Title Median Salary (2017)* Job Growth (2016-2026)* Certificates or Education
Software Developer $103,560 24% Bachelor's degree
Computer Network Architect $104,650 6% Bachelor's degree
Computer and Information Research Scientist $114,520 19% Master's degree in computer science
Computer and Information Systems Manager $139,220 12% Bachelor's degree

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Information

Software Developer

Individuals who work as software developers do the work to create the concept of a program, before the code has even been written. They design apps and systems, then pass these designs off to coders, who write the code to make them reality. A thorough knowledge of code is a requisite for this position because a software developer's programs need to work not just in theory but in application. A bachelor's degree, typically in computer science, is needed to be hired to this role; however, some employers prefer candidates who have earned a master's degree as well.

Computer Network Architect

Computer network architects are responsible for building data communication networks. These networks come in three types: local area networks (LANS), wide area networks (WANS), and Intranets. Those in this position are involved in all aspects of the design process of these networks, from conceptualization to deployment. They also conduct ongoing research into the latest methods of data sharing and upgrade hardware as needed. Although a bachelor's degree in computer science or a related field is typically sufficient education to enter this field, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in information systems can also be quite useful.

Computer and Information Research Scientist

Those who choose this career path exercise a greater level of creativity than other types of IT personnel. The job of a computer and information research scientist is to invent, design, and troubleshoot computing technologies. They typically utilize complicated algorithms and often work in the realm of the theoretical. Examples of research areas that those in this job can specialize in include data science, robotics, and programming. To work as a computer and information research scientist, a master's degree in computer programming or a related field is needed. These programs typically take 3 to 4 years to complete.

Computer and Information Systems Manager

Individuals who hold this management position are responsible for overseeing the technological aspects of an organization. They plan how the IT department is laid out, oversee the daily operations of that department, strategize ways to cut computer costs, and plan and budget upgrades to the company's technology. There are varying levels of authority that all fall under the title of computer and information systems manager. Chief information officers and chief technology officers are both very high level positions, while IT directors and IT security managers are under their command while still being computer and information systems managers. To enter this field a bachelor's degree is technically all the is needed, but most people have a master's degree as well, often a Master of Business Administration (MBA). Prior work experience in the IT field is also critical to advancing into this position.

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