An information management degree emphasizes the skills that are needed to sustain and grow a business through marketing, business, technology and management practices, as well as the application of law and ethics.
What Is Information Management?
Information management is the process of storing, collecting, managing and maintaining all types of information in an organization, especially electronic information and data. Information management is a broad phrase that incorporates procedures and policies for managing and sharing information in an organization among individuals, organizations and information systems throughout an information life cycle.
Information management deals with the control and level of an organization’s control and governance of its information assets. Proper information management is usually achieved by an information management professional who constructs effective information management systems that support business guidelines and processes. Information management also is focused on how the information is shared and delivered electronically to various recipients.
As technology and information management for organizations is growing more complex, there is a rising demand for information management professionals of all kinds and in all industries. For example, the job of information systems manager is one of the most in demand in the technology industry today. The Bureau of Labor Statistics or BLS reports demand for these information professionals will rise by 12% through 2026, which is faster than average. Demand for information management and information systems managers will increase as companies and other organizations are expanding their operations to entirely digital platforms. Information systems professionals are responsible for implementing these digital systems and ensuring they work properly and securely.
Employment growth for these professionals will come from the need to improve cybersecurity and information systems that are used by businesses.
BLS states there are 367,000 information systems managers working in the United States as of 2016. The biggest employers of these workers are:
- Computer systems design and related services: 22%
- Information: 11%
- Finance and insurance: 11%
- Management of companies and enterprises: 10%
- Manufacturing: 8%
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the median wage for computer and information systems managers was $139,000 in 2017. The top 10% earned a salary of more than $200,000 per year. Salaries in different industries varied as follows:
- Information: $153,000
- Computer systems design and related services: $146,400
- Finance and insurance: $146,350
- Manufacturing: $141,000
- Management of companies and enterprises: $140,900
Where you work as an information management professional will influence how much money you make. Below are some the best cities to work in with an information management degree:
- San Jose and Santa Clara, California
- Huntsville, Alabama
- Seattle, Washington
- Lexington Park, Maryland
- Durham-Chapel Hill, North Carolina
- Raleigh, North Carolina
- Washington DC
- Boulder, Colorado
- San Francisco, California
- Austin, Texas
Online Degree Programs
One of the major benefits of going to college today is it is possible to earn a bachelor’s or master’s degree online without usually needing to visit a college campus. There are a variety of online information management degrees available that are fully accredited at both the bachelor’s and master’s level.
Southern New Hampshire University offers a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems that can be completed entirely online. This accredited program combines a good foundation in computer information systems with the management and business knowledge that you need to enjoy a lucrative career in a field that is growing so rapidly. This program allows you to specialize either in IT management or project management, depending upon your career interests.
The University of Maryland offers a Master’s of Information Management that will prepare you to become a dynamic leader in your organization for the use of technology and information. This program draws from information management, computer science, information systems and information science to give you the skills and knowledge you need to meet the information needs of users. You also will learn how to lead efforts to develop information management capabilities for companies and to develop and deploy emerging technologies.
Each university has its own requirements for admission, but it is common for master’s program in information management to have these sorts of standards for admission:
- Completion of a related bachelor’s degree with a suitable GPA, such as 2.75 to 3.0.
- Official college transcripts
- Prerequisite courses in the sciences and mathematics
- GRE scores may be needed
- Three letters of recommendation
- Writing samples
Each university will have its own information management curriculum, but accredited programs will have similar elements. Below are some of the course requirements for the University of Maryland master’s program mentioned earlier:
- Information Environments
- Information Technology and Organizational Context
- Users and Use Context
- Management of Information Programs and Services
This particular program also offers specializations in information analysis and technology design.
Many master’s programs in particular offer a variety of specializations. At the University of Chicago, you can choose a master’s in MIS information systems in these specialties:
- Database and Internet technologies
- Information systems security
- Project management
- Information systems management
- Medical informatics
- Information systems
- Analytics and business intelligence
Given the rapid growth of technology in our economy and society, there are many scholarships and grants for students interested in information systems, information management and information technology as a career:
- ISC2 Graduate Cybersecurity Scholarship: $5000
- Davidson Fellows Scholarship: $50,000
- Edison Scholars Program: $40,000
- ESA Foundation Scholarship Program for Women: $3000
- JASC-Nielsen STEM Scholarship: $2000
- Kathy Pace Technology Scholarship: $5000
- Microsoft Imagine Cup Global Competition: $100,000
- SSPI Scholarship Program: $3500
It is more important than ever to enhance your resume and skills so that you can stand out from the competition in the competitive information management marketplace.
One way to accomplish this is to earn your Certified Information Management Professional (CIMP) designation that shows employers that you have a deep knowledge of information management. Available tracks are:
- Information Management Foundations
- Data Quality
- Data Governance
- Data Integration
- Master Data Management
- Data Modeling and Metadata
- Business Intelligence
- Data Warehousing
- Business Analytics
To improve your knowledge and network connections, consider joining the following associations and groups in this field:
- Association for Information Systems
- AIIM – The Global Community of Information Professionals
- International Federation of Health Information Management Professionals
- ARMA International
- International Information Management Association
The information management field is a booming one. You will be very likely to find an excellent job and compensation with an information management degree.
- Best Places for Tech Jobs. (2016). Retrieved from https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/credit-cards/best-places-for-tech-jobs/
- Information Management Overview. (2015). Retrieved from https://www.techopedia.com/definition/20012/information-management-im
- Computer and Information Systems Managers. (2017). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/computer-and-information-systems-managers.htm#tab-6