Decision support system management is a relatively new field of expertise that is being developed by many companies looking for experts in information management and decision making. Most people think of software management, but decision support system management specialists can also work with data warehousing or network architecture.
Degrees for Decision Support System Management
While many people majoring in decision support system management are master’s degree students, an undergraduate in business, systems analysis, or information technology could be a good starting point for this major.
There is a difference between students who major in decision support systems and decision management systems. Decision management system jobs focus on taking or recommending some course of action, with decision support system jobs are concerned with supporting those who make such decisions. Those who design web sites that allow customers to purchase items, for example, would be decision management specialists, while those who design the software that the customers use might be decision support specialists.
Many computer system managers begin with a bachelor’s degree in a computer or science field that includes computer programming and software development as well as business classes. The degree chosen may vary among employees, but all will share a common foundation of understanding the basics of computer hardware and software and how to communicate through each medium.
When it comes to seeking management positions, employees generally have two options. They can seek a master’s degree in business administration or MBA, or they can complete a master’s degree in a computer-related field. MBAs tend to lead to business-oriented jobs such as marketing while computer-related degrees tend to lead to more technical jobs.
Many companies have started styling their information technology manager as a CTO or chief technology officer. In many smaller organizations, this person is on a lateral level with the CFO or chief financial officer and even the CEO or chief executive officer. In larger companies, there may be more than one officer involved in IT with each person being responsible for a separate section of the company’s network.
Those with a master’s in decision support systems are often more likely to find jobs as CTOs or high-level managers of information systems.
What Types of Jobs Are Available for Students with a Masters in Decision Support or Management?
There are several job titles that could be applied to graduates of a master’s program in decision support system management. However, systems manager is a good general description that encompasses many of the skills taught in these programs and is listed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as a recognized job classification.
Similar job descriptions might include systems analyst, computer support specialist, computer programmer or database manager.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a computer systems manager requires at least a bachelor’s degree and five years of related experience. In many cases, employers will accept a master’s degree in lieu of several years experience or vice versa. However, many companies are beginning to require master’s degrees for jobs beyond a certain management level.
How Much Do Decision Support System Managers Earn?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for information system managers is $115,780. This included a lowest ten percent of $71,420 and a highest ten percent of $166,400. About 24 percent of all computer system managers work at least 50 hours per week for these salaries, as the jobs often involve emergency problem-solving.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that those who work in computer system design earn a median annual salary of $123,570, while those who work in finance and insurance earn $118,010, those in manufacturing earn $117,050, and those in government earn $110,030. Computer systems managers in health care and social programs earn annual median salaries of $101,840.
What Is The Job Outlook for Decision Support System Managers?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that job opportunities in this field are expected to grow by 18 percent between now and 2020. Much of the growth will be in the field of network security, but jobs will continue to grow in all areas of computer and network management.
Seeking a master’s in decision support system management may be a good decision for someone who has already worked in the field of network management and wants to expand his or her skills. For those who are dedicated to IT or network management, this field holds many possibilities for exciting job opportunities.