Information Systems Design/Analysis

Another interesting career option within the realm of information science, when we look at the Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) degree, is in information systems design or information systems analysis. Information systems designers, otherwise known as systems designers, work to design, implement and balance information systems of all types. Information systems analysts, also called systems analysts, work on optimizing user experience with programs. Both of these career options may be open to you if you earn a MLIS degree. 

A system can be defined as an orderly grouping of interdependent components linked together according to a plan to achieve a specific goal. Systems design focuses on how to accomplish a system’s objectives. Systems analysis specifies what that system should be able to do. Both systems analysis and design work with systems, processes and technology. Here, we will take a closer look at career opportunities within information systems design and analysis. 

Library books

Education for Information Systems Design/Analysis

Many jobs in information systems design and analysis call for a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. As mentioned above, however, a MLIS degree from an American Library Association (ALA)-accredited program is key to getting a good job in information systems design and/or analysis. You can search ALA-accredited MLIS programs using the ALA’s searchable database, found here. Programs can be filtered so that you can find those which focus on information systems design and/or analysis. Once you have a MLIS degree, career options within information systems, information science, and libraries will all be options for you. 

Information Systems Design/Analysis Certification

There are no mandated professional certifications that all information systems designers or analysts must have. However, there are recommended certifications, such as:

  • IT Information Library Foundations Certification (ITIL) by Zavata– This certification is designed for all IT service and support staff members, and shows how service and support aligns IT with business needs and service quality. 
  • Information System Analyst (ISA) by ICCP– Obtainable with a bachelor’s degree, this certification is often used as an assessment by undergraduate programs and a benchmark. Some entry-level jobs will require this certification.
  • SCO Certified System Administrator (CSA) by Xinuos- This is the basic level of certification for SCO UNIX products and the first step in achieving the more advanced ACE certifications.
  • Information Systems Security Management Professionals (ISSMP) by (ISC)2-This certification demonstrates your competence in the requirements of information security management.
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professionals (CISSP) by Global Knowledge – This key certification for information security professionals is required by many information systems employers. 

Settings in Which Information Systems Designers/Analysts Work

Information systems designers and analysts are found in a wide variety of employment settings, including libraries. Other places in which systems designers and systems analysts may work include, but are not limited to:

  • Government agencies
  • Public companies
  • Private companies
  • Health care centers
  • Market research organizations
  • Corporations 

Information Systems Designers/Analysts Job Descriptions

The daily responsibilities of an information systems designer or information systems analyst will vary greatly, depending upon the job setting. In general, however, you can expect the following types of responsibilities if you take on the job of systems designer/analyst:

  • Coordinating computer installations and running tests on new software/hardware
  • Consultation directly with users, colleagues and managers as required
  • Run tests on new and existing systems to ensure programs are running smoothly
  • Troubleshooting problems
  • Making modifications to systems when problems occur

Skills that are necessary to be a good information systems designer/analyst include:

  • Communication skills 
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Business analysis skills
  • Technical analysis skills
  • Systems administration
  • SQL
  • Microsoft Office

Jobs for Information Systems Designers/Analysts

A quick perusal of job sites on the Internet found the following recent openings for jobs within information systems design and information systems analysis:

  • Systems Design Engineer, Raytheon IDMS – Huntsville, AL
    • Requires bachelor’s degree, MLIS preferred
    • Experience with development of system-level architecture preferred
    • Two years of experience in engineering or technical field necessary
  • Systems Analyst, House of Ruth – Pomona, CA
    • Salary: $57,000 to $60,000/year
    • Requires bachelor’s degree
    • Two years’ database management experience required
    • One year asset management experience preferred
  • Systems Analyst/Programmer, Mt. San Antonio College – Walnut, CA
    • Salary: $69,100 to $87,500/year
    • Requires bachelor’s degree
    • Three years of professional experience necessary
  • Systems Designer, ZeniMax Media, Inc. – Hunt Valley, MD
    • Salary: $36,600 to $46,400/year
    • Requires two years of experience in developing or maintaining systems in a shipped or live game
  • Epicor Systems Analyst, Elkay Manufacturing – Milwaukee, WI
    • Salary: $72,900 to $92,300/year
    • Requires bachelor’s degree
    • Requires three years of relative work experience in Epicor
  • Information and Data Research Manager, American Board of Medical Specialties – Chicago, IL
    • Salary: $80,000 to $85,000/year
    • Requires MLIS 
    • Requires three to five years of professional information science experience 
    • Requires background or experience in research tools such as R, Python, SAS, SPSS or STATA

Information Systems Designers/Analysts Organizations and Resources

The following organizations and resources should be of interest to information systems designers and analysts and to those wishing to break into the career field:

Association of Independent Information Professionals (AIIP) – This is a professional association representing independent business owners who provide information related services. It consists of business analysts, researchers, freelancers, contractors, consultants, and more. 

Information Systems Security Association (ISSA)-This is the premier professional organization for information cybersecurity professionals. It is dedicated to enhancing individual growth, managing technology risk, and protecting critical information and infrastructure.

Society for Information Management (SIM) – This organization consists of business technology leaders who are at the intersection of business, technology and leadership. It represents the top information technology leaders and professionals in the industry. 

Network Professional Association (NPA) – This organization represents network and information technology professionals, placing ethics first. It provides opportunities for mentoring, skill sharing, and networking with like-minded information professionals around the world. 

Data Management International (DAMA) – This organization provides education, certification and career advancement for data management professionals. It has developed a comprehensive body of data management standards and practices that are followed worldwide.