Why Pursue a Career in IT Project Management?

The information technology (IT) sector is robust, lucrative and constantly expanding. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that computer and information systems managers earned a median annual wage of $151,150 as of May 2020. BLS further projects 13% job growth in IT-related occupations from 2020 to 2030.

Similarly, the need for project managers is increasing rapidly. A Project Management Institute (PMI) study estimates 33% growth in the global project management labor force among seven key project-oriented sectors through 2027. However, PMI’s analysis also highlights a widening talent gap between the “need for skilled project management workers and the availability of professionals to fill these roles.”

The need for professionals with advanced technology skills is an important aspect of this project management talent gap. Addressing this, Lamar University’s Master of Science (MS) in Management Information Systems (MIS) online program offers a unique elective course on IT project management. As a result, students can develop the in-demand skills needed to pursue a high-paying career at the intersection of these two rapidly growing fields.

What Is IT Project Management?

In defining this intersectional field, Project Manager explains that “IT project management (ITPM) is the planning, scheduling, execution, monitoring and reporting of IT projects. While many industries focus exclusively on IT projects, IT is unique in that most, if not all, industries have some level of an IT component.”

This fact highlights an essential aspect of IT project management. IT work may seem narrowly focused on IT-related processes, but in project management (as in most modern industry applications), a great deal of essential practices and operations are related to IT.

The IT project manager’s role is to facilitate this connection. These professionals ensure IT-integrated project management processes run effectively.

What Is the Connection Between IT and Project Management?

The connections between IT and project management are manifold, and the two go hand in hand. Students in this course examine project management frameworks and methods to improve the efficient and successful management of IT ventures.

Lamar University’s online MIS program also emphasizes the study of business intelligence (BI), analytics, enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems and other enterprise systems. Businesses in every industry use these systems and analytical tools to optimize operations as well as drive efficiency, productivity and growth.

This coursework includes the use of project management software and its integration into broader enterprise systems. Modern project management relies on integrating these systems to maximize efficiencies, refine processes, meet deadlines and keep all stakeholders informed on progress and outcomes.

Plus, professionals employ technologies like robotics and automation to improve project management processes like manufacturing, logistics and payroll. Cloud-based project management solutions also facilitate collaboration and consistency across global networks of people, resources and operations integral to international projects.

Simply put, the hardware, services, systems and solutions IT encompasses have become fundamental components of effective project management. This evolution has led to high demand for project management professionals who have expertise in consolidating IT and project management frameworks.

What Are the Unique Responsibilities of the IT Project Manager?

Many IT project manager responsibilities mirror those of a traditional project manager, including project design and planning, scheduling, monitoring and reporting.

However, IT project managers must also understand and utilize IT beyond the specific project management technologies employed. As Project Manager notes, they are responsible for understanding firmware and being able to implement software integrations.” They bridge project management technology, processes and macro-level enterprise systems, thereby improving project management efforts in context of broader organizational operations.

This professional role can be captivating for people interested in technology innovation and its practical, tangible application to project management. Moreover, by pursing this lucrative career, professionals can contribute to the reshaping of project management in the era of IT.

Learn more about Lamar University’s Master of Science in Management Information Systems online program.

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