Careers In IT – Information Technology Management
Technology Management – In the previous “IT Diversity” article I discussed the two main career paths of Information Technology – IT Systems and IT Application Development. Although you can spend a lifetime working with the basics in one of these sectors. People often want to advance their careers and move up the ladder to an Information Technology management position. In this article, I will discuss some important considerations to keep in mind while traveling this path. And briefly explain some educational programs that are useful to help you prepare for the trip.
Information Technology management work exists at many levels in an organization. In large organizations, you can function as an IT manager in only one part of an IT department (network, help desk, or application development manager, etc.); You can be the director of the entire IT department, or a senior executive like Chief X Officer (CXO) – where X = I for information, S for security, C for compliance, T for technology, K for knowledge, etc. In smaller organizations, you might find yourself the only IT manager and assigned to oversee all aspects of the Information Technology environment.
The experience required for various levels of IT Management generally includes but is not limited to:
– For any IT managerial position, you are expected to have in-depth experience in at least one specific area (e.g., Systems, networks, security, application development, etc.)
– For higher-level positions, the more cross-functional IT experience you have – the better
– The higher level you seek, the more aligned and knowledgeable you are with the company’s mission, vision and business processes.
As an IT Manager, several skills and competencies are essential for your success:
– People management: People problems can be big problems.
– You are unlikely to have or maintain the level of expertise needed for all the people responsible. So you need to recruit staff who have the right staff expertise.
– Information technology is crucial to the success of most companies. So you will often be under control to keep things working and complete new projects on time. If you don’t manage your staff properly, treat them with respect, professional courtesy, and ensure that they get continuing education. They will burn quickly and/or not enjoy their work, and find work elsewhere.
– You have to move or fire unnecessary or problematic employees. Therefore, Disgruntled workers can destroy the teamwork needed for a successful Information Technology project.
Collaboration and facilitation skills:
– Collaboration and facilitation skills: Most areas of Information Technology require interaction between IT staff and the business sector. From experience, I can tell you that these two groups often understand very little of each other’s situations.
– IT staff, in general, do not understand the reasons or priorities of business processes.
– Business staff rarely understand what Information Technology capabilities can or cannot do for them.
– Effective program management skills will be very helpful. Many IT projects are very complex, involving many functional areas in various business practices.
– Strategic Planning: Information Technology Managers at all levels must be able to identify the IT life cycle needs based on current capabilities while planning for IT requirements and future improvements.
IT managers must also be able to convince their colleagues that the needs of the Information Technology department are very important for companies. In other words, To ensure the priority of appropriate limited resources.
Maintain IT Currencies:
– Maintain IT Currencies: Managers must keep abreast of IT developments to keep the company and its technology relevant both in the current and future environment. Failure to do so can cause the company to lose its competitiveness.
Again, this is just a broad brush of what you need to remember if you are considering stepping into an Information Technology Management position. This is a reasonable path for many senior service members who have been on one or more of the many IT career paths. Or for veterans who have served in IT trenches in the military or civilian environment.
In many cases, you may have attended a senior leadership school or been in a managerial IT role in the military to help you develop some of these skills. However, when leaving the military to look for a career in Information Technology Management. You are likely to lack civilian business skills.
If you have questions about the IT field or if you are a member of the service turning to civilian life. Then, Don’t hesitate to leave a comment or question using the submission form below. I would love to hear from you!