Working as a Clinical Informatics Specialist

What Does a Clinical Informatics Specialist Do

Computer systems analysts study an organization’s current computer systems and procedures and design information systems solutions to help the organization operate more efficiently and effectively. They bring business and information technology (IT) together by understanding the needs and limitations of both.

Duties

Computer systems analysts typically do the following:

  • Consult with managers to determine the role of IT systems in an organization
  • Research emerging technologies to decide if installing them can increase the organization’s efficiency and effectiveness
  • Prepare an analysis of costs and benefits so that management can decide if IT systems and computing infrastructure upgrades are financially worthwhile
  • Devise ways to add new functionality to existing computer systems
  • Design and implement new systems by choosing and configuring hardware and software
  • Oversee the installation and configuration of new systems to customize them for the organization
  • Conduct testing to ensure that the systems work as expected
  • Train the systems’ end users and write instruction manuals

Computer systems analysts use a variety of techniques such as data modeling to design computer systems. Data modeling allows analysts to view the processes and data flows even before programs have been written. 

Once programs have been written, analysts conduct in-depth tests and analyze information and trends in the data to increase a system’s performance and efficiency.

Analysts calculate requirements for how much memory and speed the computer system needs. They prepare flowcharts or other kinds of diagrams for programmers or engineers to use when building the system. Analysts also work with these people to solve problems that arise after the initial system is set up. Most analysts do some programming in the course of their work.

Most computer systems analysts specialize in certain types of computer systems that are specific to the organization they work with. For example, an analyst might work predominantly with financial computer systems or engineering computer systems.

Systems analysts help other IT team members understand how computer systems can best serve an organization by working closely with the organization’s business leaders.

In some cases, analysts who supervise the initial installation or upgrade of IT systems from start to finish may be called IT project managers. They monitor a project’s progress to ensure that deadlines, standards, and cost targets are met. IT project managers who plan and direct an organization’s IT department or IT policies are included in the profile on computer and information systems managers.

Many computer systems analysts are general-purpose analysts who develop new systems or fine-tune existing ones; however, there are some specialized systems analysts. The following are examples of types of computer systems analysts:

Systems designers or systems architects specialize in helping organizations choose specific types of hardware and software systems. They translate the long-term business goals of an organization into technical solutions. Analysts develop a plan for the computer systems that will be able to reach those goals. They work with management to ensure that systems and the IT infrastructure are set up to best serve the organization’s mission.

Software quality assurance (QA) analysts do in-depth testing and diagnose problems of the systems they design in order to make sure that critical requirements are met. They also write reports to management recommending ways to improve the systems.

Programmer analysts design and update their system’s software and create applications tailored to their organization’s needs. They do more coding and debugging than other types of analysts, although they still work extensively with management and business analysts to determine what business needs the applications are meant to address. Other occupations that do programming are computer programmers and software developers.

How To Become a Clinical Informatics Specialist

A bachelor’s degree in a computer or information science field is common, although not always a requirement. Some firms hire analysts with business or liberal arts degrees who have skills in information technology or computer programming.

Education

Most computer systems analysts have a bachelor’s degree in a computer-related field. Because these analysts also are heavily involved in the business side of a company, it may be helpful to take business courses or major in management information systems.

Some employers prefer applicants who have a master's degree in business administration (MBA) with a concentration in information systems. For more technically complex jobs, a master’s degree in computer science may be more appropriate.

Although many computer systems analysts have technical degrees, such a degree is not always a requirement. Many analysts have liberal arts degrees and have gained programming or technical expertise elsewhere.

Many systems analysts continue to take classes throughout their careers so they can learn about new and innovative technologies. Technological advances come so rapidly in the computer field that continual study is necessary to remain competitive.

Systems analysts must understand the business field they are working in. For example, a hospital may want an analyst with a thorough understanding of health plans and programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, and an analyst working for a bank may need to understand finance. Having knowledge of their industry helps systems analysts communicate with managers to determine the role of the information technology (IT) systems in an organization.

Advancement

With experience, systems analysts can advance to project manager and lead a team of analysts. Some can eventually become IT directors or chief technology officers. For more information, see the profile on computer and information systems managers.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Analysts must interpret complex information from various sources and be able to decide the best way to move forward on a project. They must also be able to figure out how changes may affect the project.

Communication skills. Analysts work as a go-between with management and the IT department and must be able to explain complex issues in a way that both will understand.

Creativity. Because analysts are tasked with finding innovative solutions to computer problems, an ability to “think outside the box” is important.

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Average Salary$77,383
Job Growth Rate9%

Clinical Informatics Specialist Jobs

Clinical Informatics Specialist Career Paths

Top Careers Before Clinical Informatics Specialist
Nurse5.1 %
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Top Careers After Clinical Informatics Specialist
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What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Clinical Informatics Specialist

Clinical Informatics Specialists in America make an average salary of $77,383 per year or $37 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $107,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $55,000 per year.
Average Salary
$77,383

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Medical Scribe/Clinical Informatics Specialist (Spanish Bilingual)
Medical Scribe/Clinical Informatics Specialist (Spanish Bilingual)
Oak Street Health
Oak Street Health
06/10/2020
06/10/2020
$29,21806/10/2020
$29,218
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Robert Half
Robert Half
02/26/2020
02/26/2020
$75,00002/26/2020
$75,000
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Gables Search Group
Gables Search Group
01/31/2020
01/31/2020
$30,00001/31/2020
$30,000
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Clinical Informatics Specialist
University of California
University of California
12/31/2019
12/31/2019
$79,30012/31/2019
$79,300
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Clinical Informatics Specialist
Virginia State Government
Virginia State Government
10/22/2019
10/22/2019
$37,74010/22/2019
$37,740
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Clinical Informatics Specialist Demographics

Gender

Female

64.1 %

Male

28.5 %

Unknown

7.4 %
Ethnicity

White

65.2 %

Hispanic or Latino

11.3 %

Black or African American

10.4 %
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

30.0 %

Russian

20.0 %

French

10.0 %
Show More

Clinical Informatics Specialist Education

Schools

Walden University

19.6 %

Chamberlain College of Nursing

7.1 %

University of Illinois at Chicago

5.4 %

Grand Canyon University

5.4 %
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Majors

Nursing

52.5 %

Business

7.3 %

Information Systems

5.0 %

Health Care Administration

3.9 %
Show More
Degrees

Masters

44.3 %

Bachelors

33.5 %

Associate

10.3 %

Certificate

4.6 %
Show More

Entry Level Jobs For Becoming A Clinical Informatics Specialist

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Part Time
Internship
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Top Skills For a Clinical Informatics Specialist

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 17.1% of clinical informatics specialists listed patient care on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and creativity are important as well.

Best States For a Clinical Informatics Specialist

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a clinical informatics specialist. The best states for people in this position are Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and New York. Clinical informatics specialists make the most in Connecticut with an average salary of $88,407. Whereas in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, they would average $87,957 and $87,102, respectively. While clinical informatics specialists would only make an average of $86,825 in New York, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Rhode Island

Total Clinical Informatics Specialist Jobs:
29
Highest 10% Earn:
$149,000
Location Quotient:
1.9
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Maine

Total Clinical Informatics Specialist Jobs:
26
Highest 10% Earn:
$135,000
Location Quotient:
1.52
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Connecticut

Total Clinical Informatics Specialist Jobs:
67
Highest 10% Earn:
$149,000
Location Quotient:
1.22
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Clinical Informatics Specialist Employers

1. Parexel
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$88,697
Clinical Informatics Specialists Hired: 
10+
2. Sanford Health
4.3
Avg. Salary: 
$43,835
Clinical Informatics Specialists Hired: 
10+
3. Oak Street Health
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$46,941
Clinical Informatics Specialists Hired: 
9+
4. Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center
3.6
Avg. Salary: 
$51,319
Clinical Informatics Specialists Hired: 
8+
5. Providence Health & Services
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$54,957
Clinical Informatics Specialists Hired: 
7+
6. Aurora Medical Group
4.4
Avg. Salary: 
$51,392
Clinical Informatics Specialists Hired: 
6+

Clinical Informatics Specialist Videos

Recently Added Clinical Informatics Specialist Jobs

Updated October 2, 2020