Information systems security is a high-demand field, with an estimated 18% increase in jobs through 2024, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Analyzing an organization’s information systems to prevent hackers from breaching can make IS Security a highly rewarding and potentially well-compensated career choice.
One challenge when it comes to breaking into the IT world is a lack of experience. How can you gain experience in IT when companies prefer experienced candidates? Another is the myth that age is a factor when it comes to switching careers. A third challenge is the idea that all the good IT jobs have been outsourced to other countries.
It’s possible to break into the IT field from many professional backgrounds. Focusing on a growing segment of IT, such as information systems security, and then obtaining the right training and certifications can mean the difference between launching a successful IT career and remaining in your current career path.
Additionally, high-paying IS security jobs can be found in nearly every industry. With experience, relevant training and industry certification, you can compete for positions such as IS Security Engineer, IS Security Consultant and IS Security Manager. Additional experience and training can lead to executive IS security careers like Director of Information Technology, Chief IT Officer, IS Security Director, Senior IS Security Analyst and Chief IS Security Officer. Planning, training and certification are the keys to breaking out of your current career path and into the IT world!
Training and certification can prepare you to compete for rewarding jobs in the IT business. Not only can up-to-date training give professionals important knowledge and skills you can apply immediately at work, you can also gain opportunities to make professional contacts that can enhance your search for IT jobs in the future.
It’s important that the training program you choose can provide a solid foundation of the fundamentals to compete for the best IT jobs. Matching your training to your career path of choice is another factor to consider when choosing a program. For example, if your goal is to pursue an information technology security career, it might be a good idea to check out training programs that focus on preparing professionals to become an IT security leader, with advanced certification, such as the CompTIA®(Computing Technology Industry Association) Security +™ designation. If you’ve set your sights on a senior IT career, it may be wise to investigate advanced training programs that can prepare you to earn certifications administered by (ISC)2®, like Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP®), Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP®) or Associate of (ISC) 2®.
Certification can also help professionals break into the IT career field. A recent CompTIA® survey found that organizations are increasingly requiring security certifications for IT staff. Training and certification can provide you with the qualifications employers want, but the right training program and certifications can also give you the confidence you need to perform and advance in your IT security career. Additional training and certifications may also help speed the transition into senior IT roles.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported the median salary for computer and information systems managers was $131,600 in 2015. Professionals in the top 10% earned an average of $187,000, while the lowest 10% earned an average of $80,160 a year. The BLS also projected a 15% employment growth rate through 2024, a number faster than the national average for all other occupations.
When planning the scope of an ISS career, it's important to know where you want to go and how you’re going to get there. Your career might include leveraging your education, experience, training and certifications into an officer, director or executive position for an employer.
A sampling of IS jobs and average salaries may help show that information systems security directors and managers, IT directors and other IT management professionals typically have high earning potential.