In Forbes today, I was extremely excited to see that Forbes lists information systems as the #1 career for job prospects. The data used to obtain this conclusion was obtained from Payscale.com and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As a long time proponent of the value of an information systems education in organizations, this is great news. According to the article:
“People with a master’s in information systems are generally trained to be managers for IT workers,” says Katie Bardaro, Payscale’s lead economist. “Therefore, when you combine management with a growing industry you experience top pay and employment prospects. We live in a technological world where our technology footprint will continue to grow. Therefore, job opportunities in this field are predicted to grow faster than average by the BLS. Additionally, high demand for tech workers combined with relatively low supply (relative to all other workers out there) drive up the pay for these positions.”
Organizations have long said that they want to hire people that have both technical skills and business acumen. However, that talk always seemed like lip service to me because it never really translated into large scale hiring of IS graduates. Sure, graduates were getting jobs, but not at the rate one would expect given their desire for the IS skillset. Instead the same old standard of looking for people with niche technical skills or certifications seemed to be getting the lion’s share of the jobs. Now, however, it seems that they are (finally) coming around to see the light…and boy are they….to the tune of a 30% increase in job openings in the coming years!
This is certainly good news for all of us in IS and for those of us in higher ed. Now it is up to us (educators) to work with industry to find the correct mix and type of business and technical skills so that we can provide graduates that will thrive in these positions. We cannot afford to stay in the ivory towers of academia and assume that they way that we are doing things is aligned with what industry needs. If we don’t organizations will turn elsewhere to fill these needs.
One thing is certain, however, the future is bright for IS graduates.