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IT Engineer

Education and Training: Bachelor’s or master’s degree in computer science
Average Salary: $96,000 per year
Job Outlook: Very good

The job of an IT engineer is to design, build and put into practice hardware and software applications for computer networks in a variety of settings, from small offices to big business. They are required to solve scientific and engineering problems, for example the development of a new transportation system, the design of a space ship, or the improvement of telecommunications systems. IT Engineers work activities generally include:

  • Establishing, maintaining and supporting computer communication networks within an organization or between organizations.

  • Supervising email, anti-spam and virus protection.

  • Setting up user accounts and passwords.

  • Providing IT solutions to the management and business problems.

  • Considering and resolving all the problems, from a major system crash to a forgotten password.

  • Providing technical support as well as training to the users with varying levels of IT knowledge and competence.

  • Making out areas of support and improvement in generating and implementing solutions.

  • Supervising help-desk technicians.

  • Working professionally and effectively while collaborating with other IT staff.

  • Planning and implementing future IT developments and undertaking project work.

  • Supervising the use of the net by employees.

Education and Training Requirements

The basic qualification to be an IT engineer is a Bachelor of Science degree in computer engineering, computer science or electrical engineering. Analytical and correlation skills, good written and verbal communication, networking, self reliance, open-mindedness, versatility, and commitment are some of the skills required for this job. Entry requirements for this job generally include a Bachelors degree, certifications and several years of work experience on a help desk or as a system administrator.

Working Conditions and Environment

IT engineers work in many settings; they can work anywhere there are computers. They usually work in clean and comfortable surroundings and work for forty hours a week, but at times can work late evenings and weekends to meet deadlines or to study new methods and equipment. IT engineers often work with teams of professionals. As they spend all the day working at computers, they are susceptible to eye and back problems.

Salary and Benefits

The salary for an IT engineer is dependent on the factors like the choice of industry, experience and the location. Individuals working in urban areas no doubt earn higher wages than those working in rural settings. According to a 2008 report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, median annual salary of IT engineers were $85,430. The middle 50 percent earned from $67,790 to $104,870 and the lowest 10 percent earned below $53,720, and the highest 10 percent earned over $128,870. Median annual salary in 2010 was $96,000.
Benefits generally include paid holidays and vacations, sick leave and health insurance.

Job Prospects, Employment Outlook and Career Development

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the overall employment of computer engineers and computer programmers is projected to increase much faster than the average for all occupations. They expect the employment of IT engineers to increase by 32 percent from 2008-2018. Demand for IT engineers will increase and new growth areas will also continue to arise from fast evolving technologies. IT engineers having strong technical skills and the ability to understand an employer’s business and requirements will always be in high demand.

Getting the Job

The State employment service offices and Municipal chambers of commerce can provide information about the latest job openings for IT engineers.

Due to the rapid employment growth over the 2008 to 2018 decade, job prospects for the IT engineers should be excellent. These job openings would be the best for the applicants with a bachelor’s degree as well as experience with a variety of programming languages and tools. IT engineers will need to update their skills in order to remain competitive and to understand the latest technologies and more sophisticated tools which will emerge with time.

Where to Go for More Information

Association for Computing Machinery
1515 Broadway
New York, NY 10036
(212) 626-0500

IEEE Computer Society
1730 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 371-0101

Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals
2350 Devon Ave., Ste. 115
Des Plaines, IL 60018
(847) 2899-4227

Society for Information Management
401 N. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 527-6734

Additional topics

Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesComputers, IT & Telecommunications