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Director of Information Technology

Director of IT

salary computer systems position organization

Education and Training: Advanced degree preferred
Average Salary: $$112,000
Job Outlook: Excellent

The director of information technology is responsible for maintaining, coordinating, planning, and creating the information systems that companies, businesses, and others use to conduct business. The director of IT is charged with implementing and administering the computer-related activities of an organization. They are responsible for technical needs of an organization, and must actively work with current and new software, monitor internet connections, and network security.

The director of information technology is responsible for, and directs the work of, IT staff. The director of information technology is usually the chief planner for all computer-related operations, including software upgrades, routine maintenance and hardware improvements, along with making sure the computer usage of other employers remains trouble-free. They are the chief managers of the IT department and manage all subordinates.

Education and Training Requirements

To obtain a director of technology position, one must usually obtain a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related major. As the field becomes increasingly specialized, it is recommended that people obtain graduate degrees, such as a MBA with a concentration in technology. Undergraduates may also major in information science, management information systems, or another computer-related discipline. Math, business, and all computer classes are recommended for people hoping to become a director of information technology.

Specifically, classes in systems management and design, networking, database management, and network security are recommended for study. It is also possible to obtain a position with an associate’s degree or a trade or vocational school certification, but the person usually needs a wealth of experience in the field.

Getting the Job

The typical career path for a director of information technology usually begins in an entry-level IT position such as a help desk. As the person gains more and more experience, they can move up to management positions. Those with the credentials and experience can then move on to the director of IT position. It is good to begin with one company and move your way up as experience gained on one company’s computer systems will help you in competition for jobs from those outside the organization. Internships are a good way to get a start in company or organization.

Job Prospects, Employment Outlook and Career Development

The prospects for directors of information technology are excellent, and should grow faster than the national average. Some estimates state the field will grow by 17 percent in the next decade. This will occur because there will be new applications for technology, new software programs to install and maintain, a need for increased network security and systems maintenance and other computer-related needs for just about every organization or corporation. However, there are negative influences that could affect employment, including consolidation of IT services, downsizing and other influences, including the state of the economy.

A director of information technology has many options for career advancement. As the Chief Technology Officer position becomes more prevalent in companies and organizations, directors of IT are well-positioned to move into those jobs.

Working Conditions and Environment

Directors of information technology usually work in clean, comfortable, well-lit office settings. It can be a stressful position, though. Long hours are the norm as the director of information technology is responsible for the computer systems on a 24-hour basis. A director of information technology will be called in for emergency situations. The director of information technology must also manage a department while working with a budget.

Salary and Benefits

The median salary for a director of information technology is $112,000. The range of salaries starts at $88,240 and increases to around $141,000. The salary can vary by industry. Some examples include:

  • Software publishers $126,840
  • Computer design $118,200
  • Management companies $150,000

Where to Go for More Information

Association of Information Technology Professionals
401 North Michigan Ave., Ste. 2400
Chicago, IL 60611-4267
(800) 224-9371
www.aitp.org

Information Systems Security Association, Inc.
9220 SW Barbur Blvd. Ste. 119-333
Portland, OR 97219
(866) 349-5818
www.issa.org

TechAmerica
601 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
North Building, Ste. 600
Washington, DC 20004
(202) 682-9110
www.techamerica.org

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