Free Essay Sample «Information Systems as One of the Top 5 Career Fields»

«Information Systems as One of the Top 5 Career Fields»

Introduction

Information system is useful in myriad ways. People can use information system for getting information and entertainment, for instance, by viewing television, browsing through the web, listening to the radio, watching movies, reading newspapers, books, and magazines. Every business or organization needs to use information system in its management and operations. Companies use information systems to make viable decisions. Information systems make work easier, more accurate and also save time. There is no field that does not require information system; as a result, every profession needs the fundamentals of information system. Every organization needs to keep up with technology in order to remain competitive in the global environment. Everyone uses data and information in his/her career. Data does not have any meaning, until it is processed into information through information system. Data is used in the health sector, education sector, in legal issues, in business and civil service careers. Information system career is one of the most rewarding careers. Due to its high demand, globalization, and ICT innovations, information system has emerged as one of the five most lucrative careers.

Shortage of Candidates in the Job Field

Information systems sector has continually faced the problem of lack of skills. The shortage calls for the need of more students’ enrollment in this area. Information system skills demand is high not only in technology companies, but also in businesses that rely on technology for its coexistence. It includes businesses, finance, operations, research, and marketing. Since 1997, the sector has been experiencing a shortage that drastically affected the development of enterprises. Studies show that unemployment rates in information systems is below, compared to other fields of employment (Buyya, Yeo, & Venugopal, 2008). High salaries, required from employers, make some firms unable to hire competent professionals in the sphere of IS. The need for security in information system has led to the increase in the demand for more experts who can develop security software. However, organizations do not require specialists with only one kind of skill. Candidates in this field should have integrated skills to be able to fit well into the occupation. Currently, organizations require candidates with strong communication and leadership skills.

Studies show that organizations are in a shortage of experts who can deal with cyber-attacks and cyber terrorism (Buyya, Yeo, & Venugopal, 2008). The current situation of shortage of IS security experts has resulted in losses, as businesses are unable to deal with fraud that happens due to the unsecured system. Nations are also in great danger, as terrorists can access vital information from governments’ database and use it for terror attacks. The high demand and high payment involved makes IS as lucrative as other top job opportunities. However, even though organizations are facing a challenge of experts in security, the number of experts is expected to increase by 11% per year in the next five years. Shortage in the industry has made organizations outsource for professionals in the field. The changes in the IS industry make the existing IT professionals unable to deal with current issues. For this reason, organizations are not ready to retrain their existing IS professionals due to the high costs involved. Organizations choose to outsource IT labor to avoid incurring training expenses (Slaughter & Ang, 2006). Shortage of IS skills depends on the state. For instance, states with high-tech operation have high requirements (e.g., Washington and Texas) for IS profession than other states.

Organizations are concerned that in future, the shortage of labor in software development and computer system analysts will occur. The current pay scale is not as what IS professionals request. IS professionals are requesting high pays that organizations are unable to pay. This makes it hard for employers to attract and maintain IS experts.

Recruitment Problems for Colleges in the Field

According to Lyytinen and King (2010), earning institutions recruit students of different backgrounds and talents. In the recruitment process institutions never conduct an extensive scrutiny to establish whether the students are completely qualified for given positions. The only thing that institutions check is academic qualification, but they do not test interests and talents of students. For a student to excel and to be competent in their field of enrollment, they need to be talented and interested in that field. Some students enroll in a career not because they want to, but because someone else wants them to pursue that particular subject. In most cases, students are influenced by their parents to enroll in a particular field, such students end up performing poorly or dropping out of college. Just like in other fields, information system field faces the same problem of students getting influenced on the path of choosing a career. Studies have shown that students who did not choose to pursue a career in IS but were influenced by someone else, tend to drop out and change to other careers after program completion (Beggs, Bantham, & Taylor, 2008).

Information system career requires a person who is talented in the field and interested in its development. Technology is vibrant and keeps on evolving; this requires individuals who are interested in discovering new ways of improving technology. That cannot happen if the recruited students do not have such interests or talents. There is also an increase in withdrawal of IS students due to financial problems, where students report that they cannot afford to pay the amount of school fees requested by colleges (Lyytinen & King, 2010). High cost of school fees restricts the talented and interested students from completing their college education. Some are even forced to work, while studying, which negatively affects performance of these students, as they divide their time between school work and employment.

Some colleges are unable to enroll a big number of students in IS field due to lack of resources required for learning. The most challenging resource is lack of competent professors to handle the subjects. Good professors usually request for high salaries that schools are often unable to provide (Lyytinen & King, 2010). Colleges also face the problem of not having the required learning materials. Information systems education keeps on changing together with changes in technology. This requires colleges to keep up with technology and purchase learning resources that meet the current requirements. These changes are very expensive for institutions because they need to upgrade their libraries from time to time and also purchase up to date equipment (Attewell, Lavin, Domina, & Levey, 2006).

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Things or Industries that Are Driving the Need for IS

Globalization

According to Da Xu, He, and Li (2014), requirements of ICT experts per year will increase due to globalization in the ICT sector. The rise in demand is caused by the shift to a new technology that happens in the midst of 20 to 25 years. By

2020, it is expected that the third platform will dominate the market. The first platform was characterized by the use of terminal and mainframe computers. The second platform included the use of LAN internet and client server. The third platform is characterized by cloud computing, need for IT security, big data volumes, mobile devices, microelectronics, and the use of IT in the business environment. The ICT sector is in need of professionals who can design, deploy and develop new applications. It also requires professionals to have a combination of skills. For instance, management of big data volume requires an individual to have statistical, technological and business skills.

Mobile Devices

Mobile phones requirement is growing at a very high rate. Nowadays, a mobile phone has become essential not only for communication, but also for business management. It is approximated that the demand for mobile devices will increase by 25% per year for the next three years. People carry their mobile devices everywhere to connect with other people and to manage their businesses. The need to create new software application for devices is driving the need for information systems. The demand for mobile devices is higher than that of PC (Da Xu, He, & Li, 2014).

Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is sharing of computers software from a server computer. Cloud computing uses the internet to share resources and information with other computers. Cloud computing is highly evolving, and most businesses are adopting the technology. As organizations are transforming their businesses to incorporate cloud computing, various changes are required in the information system. New applications are designed, developed and installed. Development and installation require professionals with appropriate information system skills. New training courses in cloud computing have emerged to help solve the problem of shortage of IT skills (Buyya, Yeo, & Venugopal, 2008).

Big Data

Big data volumes have created the need for skills in information system. Various institution, such as banks, research institutions, and health institutions, need software to manage and analyze structural data. Huge data is being created every day from social media, sales, purchases, and climate data. All the data needs to be stored and properly managed, since they are meaningful to everyday activities (Laudon & Laudon, 2007). Data management business is continuously growing, as technological devices collect more and more information for the society. Information system technology is, for this reason, required to manage these data and store it in inaccessible places. For instance, there is a lot of information stored by Google that becomes meaningful if it is accessible by users. There is no need of storing so much data if it cannot be retrieved by the user when needed.

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New job roles emerging in data management include: data analysts, data scientists, and data managers who require the use of information systems. These professions analyze and provide meaning to a volume of data. Data is only facts and figures that do not possess any meaning, and it cannot be helpful to anyone. Data becomes helpful, once it is analyzed into information and interpreted properly. After analysis, data analysts provide information on habits, products and customers. Such information is useful to those people who want to develop new and better gadgets, people who want to advertise or people who want to develop new gadgets (Laudon & Laudon, 2007).

Social Media

The social media has contributed to the increasing demand for information system professionals. Due to globalization, businesses are expanding their campaign technologies by use of digital marketing. People are shifting from traditional campaigning methods to the use of social media. Most businesses are using social media to advertise their products. Such data is transmitted through a cloud, leading to an increase in demand for cloud computing expertise (Laudon & Laudon, 2007).

IT Security

Before the advancement in technology on mobile phone and other technological devices’ organizations, could keep their confidential information without the fear of exposure. Emails, which are very hard to investigate today could be monitored so easily by forensic investigators. However, the use of smartphones has limited this activity. Added challenges in forensic activities on mobile phones include intrusion on private emails by hacker by use of infections that deletes the message. A hacker can read a message from an email lists, making it hard for forensics to do an investigation. This requires further research in information system to improve security for technological devices. Skills on information system security management demand are high and will continue increasing (Laudon & Laudon, 2007).

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The main areas driving information systems demand are: the management of access and identity that limits access to those who have the rights of using the resource. There is also a threat management that protects content against intrusion, viruses, hackers and spyware. Current trend in globalization, social networking, consumer demand and cloud computing increase the level of interaction between the customers and the organization, thus increasing their vulnerability to cyber-crimes (Rogers, 2009).

Webmail has enhanced growth and connection convenience to people’s lives. However, it creates a challenge to forensic investigators due to its exposure to information. Organizations save their information in the webmail cloud. Such data becomes available to many people, and it becomes hard to maintain its confidentiality. The US law requires forensic investigators to gather evidence that is hard when dealing with emails in the cloud. It is hard to gather evidence from cloud webmail that makes it harder to analyze than client server. As a result, skills in ICT security policy formulation and implementation are in high demand.

Increase in Technological Connectivity

The need to motor or to connect devices has led to the increase in the need for IS. People need to connect to objects through a network. For instance, by the use of infrared sensors, laser scanners, Bluetooth, GPS or radio frequencies to exchange information. Such technologies are also used in monitoring and tracking devices (Da Xu, He, & Li, 2014).

Increasing Competition

Organizations are trying to be the best in their field, which calls for the creation of competitive goods and services. Any organization that wants to remain competitive must keep up with technological changes. Businesses have no other option but to utilize information systems to upgrade their operations and quality of good. It has been discovered that the use of up to date technology in organizations has led to improvement in efficiency and effectiveness of businesses. According to a study conducted in 2009 in the United States, more than 500 companies reported an increase in sales that was caused by the use of information technology in their operations. Organizations have to change their strategies from time to time to fulfill customer’s demands and to outdo their competitors. As a result, they need to employ competent experts to improve their information systems (Rogers, 2009).

Research has become an important aspect for any organization to succeed. Every sector of development requires inventing new ideas and innovation of the existing ones. Innovations and invention of ideas require the use of information technology. Manufacturing sector is in high demand for information systems experts to help improve their manufacturing process and improve the quality of products. Every sector of development requires extensive research to succeed. Information systems have a high influence on research and development projects. The increase in the demand for research and development has led to the need for information system skills in the field of research. The field of research requires the analysis and management of huge amounts of data that requires engagement of highly qualified professionals in information systems (Rogers, 2009).

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Best Fields within IS or CS that Pay the Most

Software Developer

Software developer is the most lucrative job in information systems. The job pays around $92, 000 per year in the United States. Software developers are professionals who develop technological applications that people use every day. For instance, mobile applications that buzz as an alarm to wake someone from a slumber (US News; The Best Jobs Rankings, n.d.). Software developers must be creative enough to be able to work on such applications. Software developers are either involved in creating software from scratch for a client or improving an existing software. System developers should possess strong analytical and technical skills. The demand from software demand is on the increase and it is expected to keep increasing by 23% (US News; The Best Jobs Rankings, n.d.). They work in a wide range of industries; they can work in electronic industries, in computer systems designs, and accounting. Candidates for this job should have a spectacular qualification in algorithms, notations and technical methodologies (US News, n.d.).

Computer System Analyst

Computer system analyst is another lucrative field in information systems. Candidates for this job are required to have a bachelor’s degree in information system. The main task for professionals in these careers is to integrate business function with computer systems. An expert in this field needs to research for information regarding the business he/she is involved in and design a computers system that fits the business. After designing a computer system, its costs and benefits to the organization have to be analyzed. If benefits are more than the costs, they install the system. Analysts do not only work for technology companies, but they also work in businesses sector, health sector, and finance. Their salary is approximately $81,000, according to a report by Labor Department in 2013 (US News, n.d.).

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Information Security Analysts

Information security analysts are on a high demand due to the increase in cyber-attacks and terrorism taking place due to hacking and intrusion of organizations’ data by unauthorized individuals. Information security analysts work to protect computer networks for organizations or government agencies. They motor system to determine whether there have been any intrusions into the system or whether there is any risk of intrusion. They create encryption programs and firewalls to protect the information. Encryption involves use of particular codes that only authorized users have the meaning of. Firewalls prevent intrusion by unauthorized users. Information security analysts should have knowledge of security standards and regulations and spectacular problem-solving skills. Annual salary for this job is estimated to be$ 88,500 (US News, n.d.).

Web Developer

Increasing demand for the use of internet has increased the need for web developers. Web developers are involved in creating websites. Demand for web developers will increase by 20% by the end of 2022 (US News; The Best Jobs Rankings, n.d.). Experts in this field must have a degree in any computer-related field. Candidates for this job should also have programming expertise and experience in HTML and CSS. Web developers in the United States earn approximately $63,000 per year (US News, n.d.).

 

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