Technical Manager: Job Description, Requirements and Career Information
Technical managers, also known as computer and information systems (CIS) managers, are at the forefront of technology in an organization. This job requires a balance between advanced technological skills and managerial duties.
Technical Manager Job Description
Technical managers are integral to the overall development and success of their workplaces. They work with other departmental managers to combine their team's technological developments with the company's goals. CIS managers create company software and ensure the safety of its networks. In addition to managing software and hardware instillation and upgrades, technical mangers create and maintain an organization's internal and external sites.
Long hours and strict deadlines are common for technical managers. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) notes that flexibility and communication may also be needed as managers must work within strict budgets and may encounter unforeseen technical problems (www.bls.gov). Technical managers may have to communicate remotely or with remote employees, according to the BLS.
Technical managers may also be tasked with the following:
- Provide support to users with computer or other technical difficulties
- Hire and train staff or help make hiring decisions
- Supervise information technology (IT) staff
- Consider project proposals and evaluate feasibility
- Generate ideas for improving technical products
Technical Manager Requirements
The BLS notes that while a graduate degree is preferable, most technical managers need only a bachelor's degree in a field based in computer technology. CIS managers may consider a four-year program with a major in management information systems (MIS) or computer or information science. However, some managers are able to obtain positions with an associate's degree and work experience, the BLS states, often continuing their education while on the job.
Continuing education can be found through a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with an emphasis in technology program that covers related coursework in areas such as marketing, administration, finance, and database and systems management. The BLS also notes that additional expertise can be gained through experience or certification with specific products, which can also increase chances of employment.
Technical Manager Career Information
The BLS reported that technical managers accounted for approximately 319,080 jobs in 2013. Technical managers usually work as contractors for financial, government, and manufacturing institutions, among other large businesses and organizations. With growing IT departments, the need for technical managers is great, and BLS statistics project that CIS manager job openings will increase by 15% from 2012 to 2022. Compensation differs based on amount of responsibility and specialization. CIS managers earned an average yearly income of $132,570 as of May 2013, according to the BLS.
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