BLOG: All Things Higher Ed

5 Reasons why an MS in Information Systems could be your best career move

Information Systems Professionals are at the heart of the digital world. They play an essential role in problem-solving and innovating within every sector. With a wide range of career paths available, these professionals use computer science principles, artificial intelligence and data mining techniques to design, test and implement IT solutions for real-world applications.

In today's digital age, technology and data rule. Businesses increasingly rely on technology to optimize their operations, manage data and make strategic decisions. Professionals equipped with advanced skills in Information Systems are in high demand.

If you're contemplating a career move or looking to gain an edge in the competitive job market, pursuing a Master of Science in Information Systems could be just the right step for you.

Gain the expertise to become an effective information professional with an MSIS from Central Michigan University.

What is information systems?

Information Systems is a unique field that combines business knowledge and technological expertise. It focuses on how businesses can use technology to streamline operations, make informed decisions and drive growth.

An MS in Information Systems equips you with advanced knowledge and skills in areas like business analytics, database design, networking and project management.

5 benefits of an MS in Information Systems

1. Career advancement

An MS in Information Systems can open doors to a wide range of high-level jobs in the IT sector. You'll acquire technical skills and gain a comprehensive understanding of business operations, making you a valuable asset to any organization.

2. Enhanced salary prospects

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in computer and information technology are projected to grow 13% from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for all occupations. Moreover, the median annual wage for these occupations was $91,250 in May 2020, significantly higher than the median annual wage for all occupations.

IT project manager – Median pay $164,070

An IT Project Manager coordinates all aspects of system projects, from initial development to the final delivery. They play a pivotal role in planning and defining project scope, setting deadlines, allocating resources and coordinating the efforts of team members to deliver projects according to plan. They also consider risk management and ensure that IT projects are completed within budget and on time.

Information systems managerMedian pay $164,070

These professionals oversee a company's computer-related activities, including the implementation of new hardware and software, project management and ensuring top-notch user experience.

Data architect – Median pay $112,120

Data Architects are primarily responsible for designing, creating, deploying and managing an organization's data architecture. They command a strong understanding of databases, data processing and data analysis procedures. They design strategies for enterprise database systems and set standards for operations, programming and security. They also collaborate with other IT team members and stakeholders to ensure data solutions are reliable and scalable.

Database administratorsMedian pay $112,120

They are responsible for organizing and storing data using specialized software. Database management ensures that data storage is available to users and secure from unauthorized access.

Systems analyst – Median pay $102,240

A Systems Analyst serves as a vital link between the business and technical teams. They are tasked with understanding business requirements and translating them into technical specifications. Their role involves analyzing and designing information systems that help businesses operate more efficiently and effectively. They work closely with stakeholders to identify business needs and opportunities for improvement, and then develop systems solutions to address those needs.

Network and computer systems administratorsMedian pay $90,520

These experts ensure that an organization's IT network is running smoothly and securely. This includes managing mobile devices, IoT devices and other networking systems.

3. Skill development

Pursuing an MS in Information Systems hones your problem-solving and analytical thinking skills. You'll learn how to leverage technology to solve complex business problems and make strategic decisions, setting you apart in the competitive job market.

4. Flexibility and wide range of career options

An MS in Information Systems provides valuable flexibility for your career. The skills you gain are applicable across diverse industries, including business, non-profits, and government. Whether your goal is a Fortune 500 company, a tech startup, a non-profit, or a government agency, an MS in Information Systems equips you with the technical prowess and business acumen for success in your chosen sector.

5. Enhancement of management and communication skills

The curriculum of an MS in Information Systems goes beyond technical aspects. It also emphasizes the development of management and communication skills. These skills are essential in any role, enabling effective team leadership, project management, and communication with non-technical stakeholders. These transferable skills will be invaluable for your career growth and leadership potential.

Who should consider an MS in Information Systems?

Anyone with an interest in technology and its application in business can consider pursuing an MS in Information Systems. An extensive knowledge in IT is not required. You’ll build a strong foundation in both IT systems and business management as you progress through the program.

However, it's particularly beneficial for those who have a background in computer science, information technology, business, management or a related field. While it's not mandatory to have a tech-related undergraduate degree, having some foundational knowledge of computer systems and programming can be advantageous.

This degree is also ideal for working professionals in the IT or business sector who wish to upgrade their skills and climb the corporate ladder. It can be particularly rewarding for those in roles such as Business Analyst, IT Consultant or Systems Engineer looking to move into higher-level, strategic positions.

If you enjoy problem-solving, have strong analytical abilities and are intrigued by the interplay of business and technology, an MS in Information Systems could be the perfect fit for your career aspirations.

MS in Information Systems vs. MBA: What's the difference?

While both the Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) and the Master of Business Administration (MBA) are advanced degree programs, their focus areas are quite different.

An MSIS degree primarily concentrates on the interplay of technology and business, equipping you with advanced skills in areas like business analytics, database design, networking and project management. The coursework is heavily oriented towards technological applications in business. Graduates are prepared for roles that require a deep understanding of technology's impact on business operations.

On the other hand, an MBA is a broad-based management degree that covers a wide range of business disciplines such as finance, marketing, operations and human resources. The focus is on developing general managerial competence with an understanding of all aspects of running a business.

While some MBA programs allow for specialization in areas like Information Systems, the depth covered in these areas is not as extensive as in an MSIS program.

If your goal is to assume a leadership role in the IT sector or specialize in utilizing technology to drive business growth, an MSIS degree could be more suitable. Conversely, if you're looking to gain a well-rounded understanding of all business functions with a view to assume top-level management positions, an MBA might be more fitting.

Potential challenges

While there are numerous benefits to pursuing an MS in Information Systems, it's essential to consider the potential challenges as well.

Earning a master's degree typically requires two years; however, several excellent programs are also offered online. This option could help you balance work, studies and personal life as you earn your degree.

The cost of pursuing a master's degree can be high. However, many institutions offer financial aid and scholarships to help offset these costs.

It's also important to consider the return on investment. As you can see in the careers listed above, the opportunities and salary prospects with an MS in Information Systems can far outweigh the initial cost.

Making the right choice

Before deciding to pursue an MS in Information Systems, it's crucial to evaluate your career goals, interests and readiness for the commitment it entails. Consider your interest in technology and business, your ability to handle the academic workload and your long-term career aspirations.

When choosing a program, look for ones that offer a balance of theoretical knowledge and practical experience, have experienced faculty and provide opportunities for internships or real-world projects.

In conclusion, pursuing an MS in Information Systems can be a powerful career move, opening doors to numerous opportunities in the rapidly evolving field of information technology. If you're ready to take the next step in your career journey, explore an MS in Information Systems program today.

The MSIS degree at CMU can be your ticket into a high-paying career. Even if your bachelor’s degree is not in computing or networks, you can learn the skills and techniques to contribute to the analysis, design, development and maintenance of information systems.

You can choose from four tracks to customize your MSIS degree:

  1. Business Data Analytics
  2. Cybersecurity
  3. Enterprise Systems Using SAP Software
  4. Project Management

Our program is offered both on campus and online and can be completed in just two years. Get started today and learn more about this exciting opportunity to become an information systems professional.

Blog: All Things Higher Ed posted | Last Modified: | Author: by University Communications | Categories: University Communications
The views and opinions expressed in these blog pages are strictly those of the page author.