The following article discusses the career path of Program Analyst. Learn about how to become one, education requirements, job duties, traits and qualities, national salary outlook as well as top national employers of Program Analysts.
Program analysts are responsible for the creation of computer programs, or improving on existing ones. This means they write the program’s language code, make sure it is free of errors, and test it. Furthermore, they have to train the staff in the organization so that they can effectively and correctly use the programs.
They starts with a planning stage. They then identify the needs that exist in terms of developing a program, after which they plan to design it in such a way that the needs of the organization are met. They evaluate the requests made by the business and they start to think about how to use a computer program as a solution.
Once they start developing the program, they must constantly communicate with the organization. In so doing, they will be aware of any adjustments that have to be made and they can put those in place before they continue with the design and development. Once the business or the individual users approve of the plan, the program analysts will start to write the actual code. This means they must have extensive knowledge of coding language and computer programming as well.
Once the program has been developed and the code has been written, they will run their systems to test it properly. In the testing phase, they look at efficiency, user-friendliness, and effectiveness. Additionally, if they encounter any errors, they can fix those by making the necessary changes, after which they restart the testing phase. Once all errors have been corrected, the program is ready for deployment. A program analyst often has to run training sessions and write training manuals on how to properly use the program that was created.
Other job duties of a program analyst are:
- To gather and review data to produce reports, recommendations, assessments, and forecasts
- To create metrics and their definitions, particularly in relation to risk management
- To train others within the organization on reporting systems and software
- To support metrics development and requirements, data quality assessments, definitions, and strategic analysis
Where We Work
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 294,900 computer programmers in 2016. The largest employers of these professionals are:
- Computer systems design and related services: 38%
- Finance and insurance: 7%
- Software publishers: 7%
- Manufacturing: 5%
- Self-employed workers: 5%
How to Become
Program analysts usually have at least a bachelor’s degree with a major in computer science or related field.
Generally, a program analyst has to hold a bachelor’s degree as a minimum. However, a lot of companies do accept those who have other types of training, particularly if that somehow relates to specific programming languages. Often, the degree is in the computer sciences. A program analyst can work in a range of different types of businesses, such as accounting companies or health care providers, and they may undergo additional training to supplement their bachelor’s degree training. Furthermore, experience is highly valued.
Often, a program analyst has had an interest in computer languages since being in school. However, it is advisable to also complete a degree in computer science, because this enhances their overall computer language skills. Additionally, they will be directly trained in testing programs, writing code, fixing errors, and doing everything else that is needed from a program analyst.
Because technology changes rapidly, a program analyst is also expected to take part in continuing education, attend seminars for professional developments, take classes in program language, and learn about upgrades to the things the have already studied.
There is no legal requirement for a program analyst to be certified or licensed. However, it is appreciated, as it demonstrates a commitment to excellence. Most certifications are offered by vendors and are specific to their programs.
Traits & Qualities
The most effective program analysts have the following traits to some degree or other:
- Strong analytical skills
- Ability to concentrate
- Detail oriented
- Excellent troubleshooting skills
The national average salary estimate for Program Analyst was $78,849. This number is estimated from over 1,421,624 employees, users past and present job advertisements from Indeed.com. This equates to an hourly salary of $41.07 and monthly of $6,571.
- Most Reported
Salary by State
The following section lists Program Analyst salaries in each state around the country. The figures are based on the total number of job postings through Indeed.com. For example, DC had the largest quoted salary of $90,321 while Idaho had the smallest quoted salary of $43,468.
Top 20 National Employers
According to Indeed.com, the following states had employers looking to hire a Program Analyst. The quoted salary figure represents the average salary from all job postings by this employer.
|Employer Name||Location||Average Salary|
|Indian Health Service||DC||$123,339|
|Consumer Financial Protection Bureau||DC||$117,260|
|Internal Revenue Service||Arizona||$115,385|
|Department of Energy||Colorado||$112,870|
|US General Services Administration||DC||$105,755|
|National Protection and Programs Directorate||Virginia||$104,247|
|Department Of Housing And Urban Development||DC||$103,200|
|Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for DC||DC||$102,469|
|United States Department Of Defense||Virginia||$102,399|
|U.S. Coast Guard||DC||$102,197|
|Consumer Product Safety Commission||Maryland||$101,764|
|Federal Government Jobs||DC||$101,743|
- Position Classification Flysheet for Management and …
- PROGRAM ANALYST – usajobs.gov
- NIH – Jobs @ NIH – Program Analyst
|Career Name||Average Salary|
|Director of Communications||$81,076|
|Real Estate Manager||$76,119|