by Donald L. Johnson

The 368,000 computer and information systems managers in the U.S. workforce plan and direct the work of Information Technology (IT) professionals, including systems analysts, software developers, and information security analysts. They often go by several titles including Chief Information Officer, Chief Technology Officer, and IT security manager. Almost all jobs in this field require a bachelor’s degree in a computer or related field and most are required to have a graduate degree as well. Employment of computer and information systems managers is projected to grow by 44,000 from 2016 to 2026, and demand for computer and information systems managers will continue to grow because these workers are helping organizations become more competitive by implementing digital platforms, overseeing network and data security, helping determine the business requirements for computer systems, as well as, the technology and information goals of their organizations. Most jobs in this field require several years of experience in a related job. A chief technology officer my need more than 15 years of experience in the IT field before overseeing the technology plan for a large organization.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage for computer and information research scientists was $139,220 in May 2017. By comparison, the median pay in May 2017 for all occupations was $37,690. Jobs for computer and information systems managers are projected by the BLS to grow significantly faster than for all occupations, all engineering occupations, and all life science occupations.

Projected Employment Growth, Computer and Information Systems Managers, 2017-2026

Projected Employment Growth, Computer and Information Systems Managers, 2017-2026

Source: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, April 2018.

About the author

Donald L. Johnson has a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Tennessee and serves as senior researcher and principle investigator for ORISE workforce studies. With more than 20 years of experience in surveying both industry and academia, he has conducted dozens of analyses related to science and engineering labor market trends, and on issues such as workforce skills, adequacy of labor supply, education requirements and employment demand.