Applied Management Careers: Job Description & Salary Information

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What are the pros and cons of an applied management career? Get real job descriptions, career prospects and salary information to see if an applied management career is right for you.
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Pros and Cons of a Career in Applied Management

Applied management, while a very broad term, usually refers to education programs providing management skills to professionals on their chosen area of expertise. The pros and cons of a management career can depend largely on your prospective industry and what kind of technical specialty you hold, but the following breaks down three possible applied management careers.

Administrative Services Manager Construction Manager Computer and Information Systems Manager
Career Overview Administrative services managers supervise, plan and coordinate various services for a company or organization. Construction managers are in charge of the stages of construction projects from inception to completion. Computer and information systems managers design and direct the computer activities for a company or organization.
Education Requirements At least a high school diploma or a GED At least an associate's, but a bachelor's degree is often required At least a bachelor's degree, although there may be exceptions
Program Length 1-2 years for an associate's degree 1-2 years for an associate's, 3-5 years for a bachelor's degree 1-2 years for an associate's, 3-5 years for a bachelor's and 1-2 more years for a master's degree
Certification and Licensing Certification is required for certain positions Certification is required for certain positions Varying certifications may be required or encouraged for certain positions
Work Experience Varies, but usually 1-5 years Varies, but usually at least five years Varies, but usually at least five years
Job Outlook for 2012-22 Average growth (12%) compared to all occupations* Faster than average growth (16%) compared to all occupations* Faster than average growth (15%) compared to all occupations*
Mean Salary (2014) Roughly $92,000* Roughly $95,000* Roughly $136,000*

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Administrative Services Manager

As an administrative services manager, you'll typically be in charge of managing a variety of different services for a company. Job duties can range from clerical work to hiring and firing to planning budgets and finances. You may also be in charge of overseeing support service workers, training new workers and setting schedules. Two common types of administrative services managers are contract administrators and facility managers. Contract administrators usually buy, store and get rid of property while facility managers oversee the management of buildings.

Requirements

In order to become an administrative services manager, you'll need at least a high school diploma or GED, although an associate's degree in applied management or a related field may be needed. Five years of experience in the field is a common requirement, which you can develop by starting at an entry-level position.

In December of 2012, employers posted the following job opportunities online:

  • The state of Montana was seeking a full-time administrative services manager serving as the chief financial officer for the auditing department. The employer also required applicants with five years of government accounting experience and a bachelor's or master's degree in accounting or business/public administration.
  • A company in San Antonio, Texas sough an operations support administrative services manager. The ideal applicants would have a bachelor's degree and five years of financial experience as well as five years of management experience.
  • Administrative services managers for the Department of Social Services were needed for a number of locations in California. A bachelor's degree in public or business administration or a related field in addition to three years of experience was required.

Standing Out

There are a number of ways to get ahead as an administrative services manager. Employers often ask that you have demonstrable abilities with leadership, analysis and personal communication. Another way to stand out is to obtain professional certification, such as those offered by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) or Institute of Certified Professional Managers (ICPM). Credentials like the Certified Facility Manager (CFM) and Associate Certified Manager (ACM) typically have experience and education requirements.

Construction Manager

Typically, construction managers coordinate and run the day-to-day operations of many different kinds of construction projects. From condos to shopping centers to roads to subway systems, there are a multitude of private and public construction projects underway each and every day. Complying with construction laws, hiring and firing, reporting project progress, supervising personnel, emergency management, budgeting and working with engineers and architects are just a few job duties that you can expect.

Requirements

To become a construction manager, you'll often need extensive on-the-job training and may need to move up through the ranks. A bachelor's degree in construction management, construction science or a related discipline is not an uncommon requirement.

Potential employers listed the following jobs online in December of 2012:

  • A company in North Carolina was seeking a pre-construction manager for three different cities. Sales experience and experience with 3-12 million dollar projects was required. Knowledge specifically of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems was also needed.
  • In Massachusetts, a stadium was looking for a construction manager with a bachelor's degree to help create a file transfer protocol (FTP) site and run project design.
  • Between one and two years of experience with project management and the ability to travel extensively were required for a construction management position in Denver, CO.

Standing Out

In order to stand out as a construction manager, honing your computer literacy and specific technical skills can be a solid strategy. For example, knowledge of Microsoft Office, Microsoft Project, Adobe Acrobat and project management software can be useful. It may be beneficial to complete an internship during your studies, which will help you gain real-world experience in the field. You may also consider obtaining certification from a professional organization, such as the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) or the American Institute of Constructors (AIC).

Computer and Information Systems Managers

Computer and information systems managers, also known as information technology (IT) managers, are often able to seek employment in a diverse number of industries. Analyzing, planning, directing and designing computer hardware and software are common job requirements. You may also be in charge of a staff of team of computer experts, such as programmers and technicians. Sample job titles in computer and information systems management include information systems supervisor, IT director, IT manager and application development director.

Requirements

Most computer and IT managers hold at least a bachelor's degree in information technology, computer science or a related field. A degree in applied management with a focus on IT may also be attractive to employers. It's also common to need 5-10 years of experience in the field, although every employer has specific requirements.

The following jobs were listed on the Internet in December 2012:

  • An Illinois-area credit union was seeking an IT development and programming professional to act as an IT software manager. Knowledge of Microsoft SQL Server, 3-6 years of experience and a bachelor's degree in math, economics, engineering, computer science or a related discipline were required.
  • At a Minnesota computer systems solution company, an IT project manager with 3-5 years of experience and a bachelor's degree was sought.
  • An IT company in New Jersey was looking for computer and information systems manager with a BS in English or computer science and at least two years of experience as an IT professional and/or program manager.

Standing Out

To stand out as a computer and information systems manager, consider earning your Project Management Professional (PMP). Although this is rarely required, it can be helpful to catch the eye of certain employers. This certification can potentially give your resume a boost and demonstrate to employers your ability to lead teams, direct projects and go the extra mile. You can pursue the PMP credential with a high school diploma and at least five years of related experience or a bachelor's degree and at least three years of related management experience.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Purdue University Global

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      • Executive Leader Graduate Certificate
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    2. Saint Leo University

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    Bachelor's
      • BA: Business Administration - Management
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      • AA: Business Administration
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    3. Full Sail University

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      • M.S. - Entertainment Business
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    4. Grand Canyon University

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    5. Regent University

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    6. Colorado State University Global

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      • MS - Management
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    7. Louisiana State University Shreveport

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    8. The University of Scranton

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    9. Georgetown University

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Featured Schools

Purdue University Global

  • M.S. in Management
  • BSBA in Management
  • AASBA in Business
  • Executive Leader Graduate Certificate

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Saint Leo University

  • BA: Business Administration - Management
  • BA: Business Administration - Logistics
  • AA: Business Administration

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Full Sail University

  • M.S. - Entertainment Business
  • B.S. - Music Business
  • B.S. - Sports Marketing and Media

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Grand Canyon University

  • DBA - Management
  • M.B.A. with an Emphasis in Project Management
  • Bachelor of Science in Business for Secondary Education

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Regent University

  • Doctor of Strategic Leadership
  • Master of Arts in Law - Business
  • Bachelor of Applied Science in Management and Leadership

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Colorado State University Global

  • MS - Management
  • BS - Business Management
  • Undergraduate Certificate - Project Management

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Louisiana State University Shreveport

  • Master of Business Administration with a General Business Specialization
  • Master of Science in Nonprofit Administration
  • Master of Business Administration - Entrepreneurship and Family Enterprise Concentration

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The University of Scranton

  • MBA - Operations Management
  • Master of Business Administration
  • Dual MBA-MHA

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