Information Systems Engineering Careers: What to Know

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Never again will business and enterprise revert to a pre-computing existence. Computers have fundamentally changed the way that not only individuals but businesses and other organizations, operate. But using computing power effectively requires design, skillful implementation, and education. Systems engineering professionals have the skills to make computing work effectively for all kinds of entities.

What is an Information Systems Engineer?

Information Systems (IS) Engineers fill a critical role for any organization that uses data — and data use is increasingly vital to any business, organization, or agency. Computing and digital storage capabilities have forever changed the face of the enterprise. Now that the landscape requires organizations to use and track data to remain competitive, entities need professionals who can effectively manage, store, manipulate, and synthesize information so they can be integrated into both standard practice and plans for future improvement. That’s where an IS Engineer comes in.

Statistics about Information Systems Engineers

Required Education

Information Systems Engineers are often required to have a computer-related undergraduate degree. It might be in systems engineering, computer science, information technology, or a similar field. Master’s degrees can increase earning power as well as improve the chances of selection when being considered for an IS Engineering position.

In addition to college and postgraduate education, independent certifications can help boost an Information Systems Engineer’s credibility and skills, as well as make IS Engineers more attractive job candidates. These certifications include the Ethical Hacker certification, the Global Information Assurance Certification (GIAC) (offered in multiple levels), or becoming a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), Information Systems Security Architecture Professional (ISSAP), Information Systems Security Engineering Professional (ISSEP), Information Systems Security Management Professional (ISSMP), and more.


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a few qualities stand out that are particularly beneficial to an IS Engineer:

  • Analytical skills aid in dissecting processes and being able to improve them.
  • Problem-solving skills help an IS Engineer troubleshoot and move quickly through setbacks and hindrances rather than being caught up or delayed by them.
  • Multitasking is a valuable aptitude for an IS Engineer who often manages multiple projects or tasks at once.
  • Communication skills enable IS Engineers to work with colleagues, users, team members, and supervisors to accomplish tasks and meet goals.

Other valuable skills include organizational skills, math proficiency for performing calculations and working with code, general knowledge of interdisciplinary subjects including business and finance, and more.

Job Responsibilities

Organizational use of information systems makes sharing, collecting, measuring, analyzing, and tracking information more efficient by improving how it’s accessed and stored. Information Systems Engineers must not only creatively solve problems but then build the infrastructure to make the solutions possible. They spend much of their time communicating with various factions — for instance, working alongside both management and eventual users to build a new tool or application. They perform application development, including designing software, writing code, and testing.


IS Engineers are responsible for building, maintaining, and troubleshooting computer systems that store, manipulate, analyze, display, and record data of various types.

Salary and Job Outlook

Information Systems Engineers can anticipate lucrative pay opportunities in their field. The BLS doesn’t provide specific salary information for the position of IS Engineer, but the median salary in 2016 for “Computer and Information Systems Managers” was reported at $135,800 annually. A 2016 annual median salary for “Network and Computer Systems Administrators” was reported at $79,700. Industry growth between 2016 and 2026 is estimated to be only modest, which indicates growing competition for these types of positions. Therefore, obtaining certifications or postgraduate degrees could improve the ease with which one might secure a lucrative future position.


Information Systems Engineers jobs can be found in industries within both the public and private sectors. Prospective employers range from nonprofit entities to corporate conglomerates or government agencies. IS Engineers could work within software companies, large retailers, manufacturers, government entities, international firms, logistics management, and a host of other industries.

Information Systems Engineers are a vital part of any organization that uses computers to use or track data. This includes an ever-increasing number of businesses, entities, and applications. The number of organizations that can use the skills of an IS Engineer will only continue to grow as we become even more dependent on computing. Pursuing any aspect of a career in systems engineering careers can prove a strategic and fulfilling choice.

Learn More

An advanced degree program for engineers who want to become leaders without losing their foundation in engineering, the online Master of Engineering Management from Ohio University focuses on leadership and management skills and their direct relationship to engineering process improvement, project management, effective communication, and innovative solutions.

Recommended Readings/Viewings:

A Closer Look at Engineering Professions
What to Expect From an Engineering Management Career
Engineering Management Programs: Become a Manager and Remain an Engineer


Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook
Glassdoor: Information Systems Engineer Salaries
Chron: Importance of Information Systems in an Organization : Information Systems Engineer: Salary, Requirements & Career Info