Upon successful completion of this chapter, you will be able to:
- describe each of the different roles that people play in the design, development, and use of information systems
- understand the different career paths available to those who work with information systems
- explain the importance of where the information-systems function is placed in an organization
- describe the different types of users of information systems.
In the opening chapters of this text, we focused on some of the major components in information systems such as Technology, data, and process. Now we will discuss the people component of Information Systems in this section. It is because of a team of diversely skilled individuals that organizations are able to advance the way that they could.
People are involved in information systems in just about every way you can think of: people imagine information systems, people develop information systems, people support information systems, and, perhaps most importantly, people use information systems.
Keep in mind: The proceeding jobs mentioned does not represent all possible jobs within an information systems organization. Larger organizations will have more specialized roles; smaller organizations may combine some of these roles. Many of these roles may exist outside of a traditional information-systems organization, as we will discuss below.
Working with information systems can be a rewarding career choice. Whether you want to be involved in very technical jobs (programmer, database administrator), or you want to be involved in working with people (systems analyst, trainer), there are many different career paths available.
Many times, those in technical jobs who want career advancement find themselves in a dilemma: do they want to continue doing technical work, where sometimes their advancement options are limited or do they want to become a manager of other employees and put themselves on a management career track? In many cases, those proficient in technical skills are not gifted with managerial skills. Some organizations, especially those that highly value their technically skilled employees, will create a technical track that exists in parallel to the management track so that they can retain employees who are contributing to the organization with their technical skills.
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