System Integration Analyst Careers: Job Description & Salary Info

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A systems integration analyst's mean average annual salary is around $69,773. Is it worth having to keep up with rapidly-changing technology? See real job descriptions and get the truth about the career's outlook to find out if becoming a systems integration analyst is right for you.
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Pros and Cons of a Career as a Systems Integration Analyst

System integration analysts make sure all of the various systems on which an organization depends - data, computer, communication - work together efficiently with the maximum amount of productivity and at the lowest possible cost. Review the pros and cons to decide.

Pros of a Career as a Systems Integration Analyst
Higher than average salary (mean wage $69,773 in 2015)***
Strong employment growth (profession predicted to grow 25% from 2012 to 2022)*
Ability to be self-employed or to telecommute*
Education and training for this job can prepare you for a variety of other analyst careers*

Cons of a Career as a Systems Integration Analyst
Technology changes rapidly and constantly, requiring you to pay out-of-pocket for new training courses*
Profession may involve long hours (many work more than 40 hours per week)*
May be working on tight deadlines, increasing the job's stress**
Possibility of conflict with end-users and/or management who don't want to learn a new system*

Sources: *U.S.Bureau of Labor Statistics, **Monster.com, ***PayScale.com

Career Information

Job Description

Systems integration analysts work with all departments within an organization to determine their system needs, analyze their current systems for cost of use and efficiency, and determine what kinds of changes need to be made to improve how all the various systems work together and how the users interact with them. In this job, you would spend time alone researching new technologies, interpreting data, writing reports and designing and testing new systems. You would also spend time with department managers to determine their needs and priorities, with end users to observe how they utilize the systems and with upper management to present your findings and make your recommendations.

When the integration between systems has broken down or is hindering an organization from advancing or functioning properly, there can be a great deal of pressure on you to make your recommendations quickly. The pressure can be even greater when the organization is losing profits rapidly because of these breaks or issues and they expect you to make fast changes.

Salary and Job Outlook

Because cloud computing technology is changing the way businesses operate and utilize data systems, integration analysts will be in high demand over the next decade as corporations install new platforms. For this reason, the computer systems analyst field, including systems integration analysts, is expected to grow about 25% during the 2012-2022 decade, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The BLS reported mean annual salary for the computer systems analysts in 2014 was far above the national average, at $87,320. 'PayScale.com' reported a median salary for systems integration analysts at $69,773, and ranged from $50,519 - $93,492 as of July 2015.

Requirements

Educational Requirements

Many employers are looking for systems integration analysts who have an associate's or bachelor's degree in a field such as computer or information systems, computer science or information technology. According to 2011 data from O*NET OnLine, 41% of computer systems analysts had associate's degrees, while 26% had bachelor's degrees. However, a degree is not strictly required for the position, and some employers may be more interested in the amount of experience you have than in how you were trained.

Employers in certain fields, such as healthcare, may require applicants to have experience or training in systems specific to that field. Because some positions may also require you to be in charge of maintaining and troubleshooting systems once they've been put in place, knowledge of programming or certain management software, like that in Microsoft's SharePoint series, can be beneficial.

Personal Skills

Besides the knowledge you'll need for a job in the systems integration analyst field, you'll need certain personal skills as well. For example, collaboration, listening and communication skills are extremely important, as are problem-solving and decision-making skills. Being a strong writer and public speaker will be necessary for when you're called to present your observations and/or recommendations to upper management. An ability to think creatively and outside the box are also key in this type of job.

Job Listings

Based on job postings from mid-April of 2012, there were a number of systems integration analyst positions available in a wide variety of industries. Based on those listings, employers were especially interested in applicants with at least three years of experience and an associate's or bachelor's degree. Many were also looking for applicants who had Java programming experience and were strong team players. Below are a few of those listings.

  • A computer hardware/software company in Virginia was looking for a senior systems integration analyst to review and improve its forensics lab and document analysis process, help develop and record policies and procedures and analyze all its network, peripheral and telecommunications system requirements. The company was particularly interested in someone with at least five years of experience, a Bachelor of Science degree and strong business, social and customer service skills.
  • A healthcare company in New Jersey was looking for an integration analyst who would help create, implement and maintain interfaces between hospital systems that would support the company's financial, clinical and business goals, troubleshoot problems with its clinical applications and systems and help identify opportunities for automation. The company's ideal candidate would have an associate's or bachelor's degree in information technology or computer science (or equivalent experience) and would have strong technical communication and problem-solving skills.
  • An Internet service company in New Jersey was looking for a systems integration analyst who would help with managing the work production systems at its production facilities and work directly with both external and internal clients and management teams. The company was specifically seeking applicants with excellent analytical skills and the ability to work independently and travel both within the U.S. and to Canada.
  • A consulting firm in Washington D.C. was looking for a systems integration analyst who would help integrate its technology and business needs, help create technology-based solutions for its clients' needs and follow new systems solutions through the entire production life-cycle. This company listed the following as requirements for applicants: at least one year of professional experience in management consulting, a bachelor's degree and experience with the software development life-cycle.
  • An aeronautics and defense company in Virginia was looking for a staff systems integration analyst with top secret security clearance who would be involved in all steps of its projects' life-cycles and have direct contact with both its customers and its IT staff. The company specifically required experience with Windows system administration, an ability to work independently and an interest in working on a number of different problems and technologies.

Making Yourself Stand Out

Continued education is one of the surest ways you can make sure to keep an edge over the competition in the field. As you become more familiar with newer and niche systems, you will be more able to meet the specific and varied technical demands of employers. Some specific training opportunities are listed below.

  • As wireless and mobile networks continue to grow, companies will need integration analysts who understand the potential of these technologies and how to leverage them as integral facets of their company's systems, so consider beefing up your knowledge of these areas. A graduate certificate in wireless communications is one way to achieve this; programs are available online and can often be completed in one semester if pursued full-time.
  • The healthcare field's use of information technology is growing rapidly, and growing with it is the field's need for systems integration analysts who know how to merge that technology with the unique demands and needs of the industry. Consider further study into health information systems or health informatics to become better versed in this field; graduate certificate programs are available in both these areas.
  • According to the BLS, those with business training may have better prospects when it comes to job hunting. A master's degree or graduate certificate in business administration may help you get your foot in the door. Many of these programs are available entirely online as well.

Alternate Career Paths

Management Analyst

If it's the tech side of systems integration that doesn't interest you, consider using your analyzation skills to work with companies to improve their organization from a managerial standpoint. The concept is the same, but instead of working with the IT systems, your work would focus on the people of the company and how to increase their productivity and the company's efficiency and profits. This field is expected to also grow about 22% through the 2010-2020 decade, and the salary is actually slightly better than that of systems integration analysts. The BLS reported a mean annual wage of $88,000 in 2011.

Software Quality Assurance (QA) Analyst

If you want to work more specifically with software, then this may be a good fit for you. Software QA analysts work specifically with the software a company uses. They help manage the workforce's output, plan the build and release estimates and schedules for company-specific software and manage a company's internal software quality assurance process. This job falls under the computer systems analyst field in the BLS, so its salary and job outlook information are the same as for that career.

Programmer Analysts

If you want to have more input into the building of software, then a programmer analyst's career may be worth considering. Programmer analysts both design and update the software used by a company's systems and also write applications that specifically meet a company's needs. This career includes more coding, debugging and software troubleshooting than other types of analyst careers, but you would still work closely with management and IT teams. This job also falls under the BLS's computer systems analysts umbrella, so the pay and job prospects are on par with that field.

Popular Schools

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    1. Georgetown University

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      • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management
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Featured Schools

Georgetown University

  • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management

What is your highest level of education completed?

Kaplan University

  • MSM in Information Technology
  • Bachelor of Science in Information Technology
  • Associate: Information Technology

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Full Sail University

  • BS - Cloud Technologies (Campus)
  • BS - Game Design (Campus)

What is your highest level of education?

Grand Canyon University

  • DBA with an Emphasis in Data Analytics
  • Bridge to the M.S. in Information Technology Management
  • B.S. in Information Technology

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Northcentral University

  • Doctor of Business Admin - Applied Computer Science
  • PhD in Business Admin - Applied Computer Science
  • MSTIM - Computer Science
  • MBA - Applied Computer Science

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Baker College Online

  • Leadership Studies - MBA (Master's)
  • Information Technology and Security - Bachelor
  • Information Technology - Associate

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Keiser University

  • Bachelor of Science - Cyber Forensics/Information Security
  • Associate of Sciences - Information Technology

What is your highest level of education?

Colorado State University Global

  • Master - Information Technology Management
  • Graduate Specialization - Information Technology
  • Graduate Certificate - Cyber Security

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