As a professional who specializes in infrastructure management, you will be working on ensuring that computer and related networks are functioning properly in various organizations. Infrastructure managers are largely responsible for the effective operation of vital computer systems, local areas networks, wide area networks and other data communication systems that all organizations rely on today.

What Is Infrastructure Management?

Infrastructure management (IM) refers to the management of the most essential operation components of an organization’s IT systems or department. IM can include processes, policies, equipment, data, human resources, external contacts and the general effectiveness of the IT system.

Infrastructure management can be divided into parts, including systems management, network management, and storage management. The major purpose of infrastructure management is to do the following:

  • Cut down on duplication of effort
  • Increase adherence to vital standards in the IT area
  • Boost information flow throughout a company’s information systems
  • Increase adaptability that is needed for a company’s changeable environment
  • Ensure that change management practices and policies are effective

Overall, the success of many organizations is dependent upon good infrastructure management and related planning and projects.

Opportunity

Technology is growing more important year by year, and that is why employment for all computer and information technology occupations is set to grow by 13% between 2016-2026. This is faster than average when compared to other fields, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics or BLS. All together, it is anticipated that computer infrastructure and related positions in the computer and technology fields will add 546,000 new jobs in this time period.

Infrastructure managers, computer network architects and related positions are expected to grow by 6% through 2026, which is about as fast as average. Demand for infrastructure managers in the computer network field will grow as companies and other organizations are increasing their IT networks to handle new demand. Designing and building such networks and performing upgrades to existing ones will create new jobs for professionals with this type of degree.

Career Paths

BLS states that there are 162,700 computer network architects as of 2016, which is closely related to infrastructure management. The BLS reports that these workers were employed in these areas:

  • Computer systems design: 26%
  • Wired telecommunication carriers: 8%
  • Management of companies and enterprises: 7%
  • Insurance carriers: 5%
  • Educational services: 5%

Professionals with an infrastructure management degree also may work in these related positions:

  • Computer and information research scientists
  • Computer programmer
  • Computer systems analyst
  • Computer hardware engineer
  • Database administrator
  • Computer support specialist
  • Network and computer systems administrator

Salaries

The BLS reports that the median salary for computer network architects was $101,000 in 2016, with the top 10% earning $158,000 per year. Median salary by industry type was as follows:

  • Wired telecommunications carriers: $107,000
  • Insurance carriers: $107,400
  • Management of companies and enterprises: $103,800
  • Computer systems design: $103,000
  • Educational services: $62,300

Salaries for other related careers according to BLS were:

  • Computer and information research scientists: $111,800
  • Computer programmer: $79,800
  • Computer systems analyst: $87,200
  • Computer hardware engineer: $115,000
  • Database administrator: $84,900
  • Computer support specialist: $52,100
  • Network and computer systems administrator: $79,700

The best opportunities for these types of IT positions can be found in the following cities that you may not have heard about as much as the high costs areas of San Francisco and New York City:

  • Stamford, Connecticut
  • Wilmington, Delaware
  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Tysons Corner, Virginia
  • Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Miami, Florida
  • Naperville, Illinois
  • Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Omaha, Nebraska

Employers

With your infrastructure management degree, you will have the skills to work in many different IT related positions in many fields. Some of the best employers to consider in the tech field with good median salaries are:

  • EMC: $117,000
  • Apple: $127,000
  • Texas Instruments: $101,000
  • Salesforce: $136,000
  • Advanced Micro Devices: $102,000
  • Intel: $118,000
  • eBaoy: $125,000
  • Expedia: $115,000

Bachelor’s Degree

A bachelor’s degree in infrastructure management or IT management will help you to launch your career in one of the most rapidly growing fields in the country. Students who earn this bachelor’s degree will discover how to manage IT infrastructure and technical services within large and small organizations. You will learn about the fundamentals of infrastructure management, management science, IT service management and IT teams and the dynamics of groups.

Master’s Degree

A master’s degree in infrastructure management and information technology will provide you with the higher level skills so that you can work in upper level management and executive positions in most industries. You can expect to take courses in computer platforms, network architecture designs, software systems for both application and development, and client/server technology.

Online Degrees

There are a variety of online bachelor’s and master’s degrees in infrastructure management and information technology management today. These advanced degrees allow the student to take their courses mostly or entirely online. Depending if it is a master’s or bachelor’s program, it is possible to earn these degrees in 1.5 to four years. These degree programs typically feature courses in risk management, IT management, networking, cyberlaw, disaster recovery and technological globalization.

Admission Requirement

To be admitted to a master’s program in infrastructure management, you will need to have these types of qualifications:

  • 0 GPA
  • Bachelor’s degree in a technical or engineering field
  • GRE scores may be required
  • Three professional or academic recommendations
  • Writing samples
  • Transcripts
  • Related work experience reflected on your resume

Curriculum

A master’s program in infrastructure management may include courses such as:

  • Strategic Management in Dynamic Environments
  • Relational Database Management Systems
  • Database Analysis, Design and Implementation
  • Networking and Telecommunications
  • Network Administration
  • Information Technology Systems Development
  • Systems Implementation
  • Project Management Processes in Organizations
  • Project Planning, Execution and Closure
  • Schedule and Cost Control Techniques
  • Contracting and Procurement in Project Management
  • Project Management Capstone

Financial Assistance

Students who want to earn their bachelor’s or master’s degree in infrastructure management or a related field may consider getting a scholarship or grant if they qualify. These financial aid packages can go a long way towards reducing the overall cost of a college education:

  • Marc Beaumont Scholarship Fund: $2500
  • NIFB Young Entrepreneur Awards: $1500
  • John L. Carey Scholarship Program: $5000
  • Betty Stevens-Frecknall Scholarship: Various amounts
  • Kevin Jetton Service Scholarship: Various amounts
  • Robert Half Technology/AITP Scholarships: $2500
  • Morgan Stanley Information Technology Scholarships: Various amounts
  • Sherry Anklam Memorial Award: Various amounts
  • Dave Sanders Memorial Scholarship: Various amounts
  • Harold Pool Memorial Scholarship: Various amounts

Certifications

Students and professionals who want to enhance their career prospects may consider obtaining the following technical certifications in infrastructure, IT and related fields:

  • Certified Information Security Manager (CISM)
  • Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC)
  • AWS Certified Solutions Architect
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)
  • Citrix Certified Professional – Virtualization (CCP-V)

Associations

Professionals who want to enhance their career and educational prospects may consider joining and networking at these associations that are related to the infrastructure field:

  • Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)
  • Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP)
  • Association of Shareware Professionals (ASP)
  • Association for Women in Computing (AWC)
  • BDPA (Black Data Processing Associates)
  • Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility (CPSR)
  • Network Professional Association (NPA)
  • Society for Technical Communication (STC)
  • Software Development Forum (SDF)
  • Washington Alliance of Technology Workers (WashTech)
  • Women in Technology (WIT)
  • CompTIA
  • National Association of Programmers

Those who are passionate about IT infrastructure and related fields should consider earning an infrastructure management degree so that they can take advantage of the many lucrative career options available in this field.

References

Henry Steele
Henry Steele
Henry is Editor-in-Chief of Business Student.com. He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.

BusinessStudent.com provides students of business with the opportunities to get ahead in their career.