MIS specialists are computer whizzes who plan and supervise the operations
of information systems and data processing activities.
They determine computer hardware and software requirements. They evaluate
the usefulness of new equipment options. Then they make purchasing decisions
based on what products will keep the business operating at optimum levels.
"Management information systems is the study of the design, implementation,
management and use of information technology in organizations," according
to one university program's description.
MIS specialists work for a wide variety of companies -- utility companies,
colleges and universities, high-tech firms, business and industry, newspapers,
airlines, investment and securities institutions, insurance organizations,
research organizations and law enforcement agencies. They also work for government.
This is an office job. Most MIS specialists work at least 40 hours a week,
sometimes longer if they're under pressure to meet project deadlines.
Physical fitness isn't a factor in this job. Still, MIS specialists are
usually in a managerial or executive position, so stress management skills
are highly recommended.
Many businesses need MIS specialists. Yet not all need or can afford to
have MIS specialists all to themselves. These companies will hire MIS experts
from consulting firms. MIS is part of the outsourcing trend, notes Yair Wand.
He's with a university's MIS program.