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Become A Practice Director

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Working As A Practice Director

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • $152,981

    Average Salary

What Does A Practice Director Do

Computer and information systems managers, often called information technology (IT) managers or IT project managers, plan, coordinate, and direct computer-related activities in an organization. They help determine the information technology goals of an organization and are responsible for implementing computer systems to meet those goals.

Duties

Computer and information systems managers typically do the following:

  • Analyze their organization’s computer needs and recommend possible upgrades for top executives to consider
  • Plan and direct the installation and maintenance of computer hardware and software
  • Ensure the security of an organization’s network and electronic documents
  • Assess the costs and benefits of new projects and justify funding on projects to top executives
  • Learn about new technology and look for ways to upgrade their organization’s computer systems
  • Determine short- and long-term personnel needs for their department
  • Plan and direct the work of other IT professionals, including computer systems analysts, software developers, information security analysts, and computer support specialists
  • Negotiate with vendors to get the highest level of service for their organization’s technology

Few managers carry out all of these duties. There are various types of computer and information systems managers, and the specific duties of each are determined by the size and structure of the firm. Smaller firms may not employ every type of manager.

The following are examples of types of computer and information systems managers:

Chief information officers (CIOs) are responsible for the overall technology strategy of their organizations. They help determine the technology or information goals of an organization and then oversee implementation of technology to meet those goals.

CIOs may focus on a specific area, such as electronic data processing or information systems, but CIOs tend to focus more on long-term or big picture issues. At small organizations a CIO has more direct control over the IT department, and at larger organizations other managers under the CIO may handle the day-to-day activities of the IT department.

CIOs who do not have technical expertise and who focus solely on a company’s business aspects are included in a separate profile on top executives.

Chief technology officers (CTOs) evaluate new technology and determine how it can help their organization. When both CIOs and CTOs are present, the CTO usually has more technical expertise.

The CTO is responsible for designing and recommending the appropriate technology solutions to support the policies and directives issued by the CIO. CTOs also work with different departments to implement the organization’s technology plans.

The CTO usually reports directly to the CIO and may be responsible for overseeing the development of new technologies or other research and development activities. When a company does not have a CIO, the CTO determines the overall technology strategy for the firm and presents it to top executives.

IT directors, including management information systems (MIS) directors, are in charge of their organizations’ information technology (IT) departments, and they directly supervise other employees. IT directors help to determine the business requirements for IT systems, and they implement the policies that have been chosen by top executives. IT directors often have a direct role in hiring members of the IT department. It is their job to ensure the availability of data and network services by coordinating IT activities. IT directors also oversee the financial aspects of their department, such as budgeting.  

IT security managers oversee their organizations’ network and data security. They work with top executives to plan security policies and promote a culture of information security throughout the organization. They develop programs to keep employees aware of security threats. These managers must keep up to date on IT security measures. They also supervise investigations if there is a security violation.

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How To Become A Practice Director

Typically, a bachelor’s degree in computer or information science, plus related work experience, is required. Many computer and information systems managers also have a graduate degree.

Education

Computer and information systems managers normally must have a bachelor’s degree in a computer- or information science–related field. Such a degree usually takes 4 years to complete and includes courses in computer programming, software development, and mathematics. Management information systems (MIS) programs usually include business classes as well as computer-related ones.

Many organizations require their computer and information systems managers to have a graduate degree as well. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) is common and takes 2 years beyond the undergraduate level to complete. Many people pursuing an MBA take classes while working, an option that can increase the time required to complete that degree.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Most jobs for computer and information systems managers require several years of experience in a related information technology (IT) job. Lower level management positions may require only a few years of experience. Directors are more likely to need 5 to 10 years of related work experience. A chief technology officer (CTO), who oversees the technology plan for a large organization, may need more than 15 years of experience in the IT field before being considered for a job.

The number of years of experience required varies with the organization. Generally, smaller or newer companies do not require as much experience as larger or more established ones.

Computer systems are used throughout the economy, and IT employees may gain experience in a variety of industries. However, an applicant’s work experience should be in the same industry they are applying to work in. For example, an IT security manager should have previously worked in information security. A hospital IT director should have experience in the healthcare field.

Advancement

Most computer and information systems managers start out as lower level managers and advance to higher positions within the IT department. IT directors or project managers can advance to become CTOs. A CTO or other manager who is especially business minded can advance to become a chief information officer (CIO), the person in charge of all IT-related decisions in an organization. CIOs can advance to become top executives in an organization.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. IT managers must be able to analyze problems and consider and select the best ways to solve them.

Business skills. IT managers must develop and implement strategic plans to reach the goals of their organizations.

Communication skills. IT managers must be able to explain their work to top executives and give clear instructions to their subordinates.

Decisionmaking skills. Some IT managers must make important decisions about how to allocate resources in order to reach their organizations’ goals.

Leadership skills. IT managers must be able to lead and motivate IT teams or departments so that workers are efficient and effective.

Organizational skills. Some IT managers must coordinate the work of several different IT departments to make the organization run efficiently.

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Practice Director jobs

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Practice Director Demographics

Gender

Male

70.7%

Female

27.1%

Unknown

2.3%
Ethnicity

White

79.1%

Asian

9.5%

Hispanic or Latino

8.2%

Unknown

2.6%

Black or African American

0.7%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

20.8%

French

16.7%

German

12.5%

Japanese

12.5%

Mandarin

8.3%

Portuguese

4.2%

Dutch

4.2%

Chinese

4.2%

Russian

4.2%

Dari

4.2%

Cantonese

4.2%

Italian

4.2%
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Practice Director Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

12.9%

George Washington University

7.2%

Northeastern University

6.5%

Johns Hopkins University

5.8%

University of Pennsylvania

5.0%

University of Southern California

5.0%

George Mason University

5.0%

Villanova University

4.3%

Babson College

4.3%

University of Utah

4.3%

University of Dayton

4.3%

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

4.3%

Harvard University

4.3%

University of Georgia

4.3%

University of Virginia

4.3%

Syracuse University

3.6%

Northwestern University

3.6%

Rochester Institute of Technology

3.6%

Stanford University

3.6%

University of Missouri - Columbia

3.6%
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Majors

Business

31.5%

Computer Science

9.0%

Finance

8.8%

Management

6.7%

Accounting

5.7%

Nursing

4.5%

Project Management

3.3%

Health Care Administration

3.1%

Information Systems

3.1%

Electrical Engineering

2.9%

Psychology

2.9%

Marketing

2.8%

Computer Information Systems

2.6%

Economics

2.4%

Political Science

2.1%

Information Technology

2.1%

Management Information Systems

1.7%

Communication

1.7%

English

1.6%

Education

1.4%
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Degrees

Masters

42.0%

Bachelors

35.4%

Other

12.2%

Doctorate

4.8%

Certificate

3.7%

Associate

1.6%

Diploma

0.2%

License

0.1%
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Real Practice Director Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
International Practice Strategy Director Perkins + Will, Inc. San Francisco, CA Sep 01, 2013 $320,000
Technology Practice Builder Assoc DIR Accenture LLP Hillsborough, NJ Dec 20, 2016 $232,600
Technology Practice Builder Assoc DIR Accenture LLP Arlington, VA Dec 20, 2016 $232,600
Professional Services Practice Director Cloudera New York, NY Nov 17, 2016 $229,382
Executive Practice Director Chaffetz Lindsey LLP New York, NY Jan 10, 2014 $220,000
Global Practice Director-Network Urban Science Applications, Inc. Detroit, MI Dec 15, 2015 $206,000
Director, Practice Services Ca, Inc. New York, NY May 27, 2016 $195,208
Practice Director KPI Partners, Inc. North Canton, OH Jun 08, 2013 $185,000
Practice Director APPS Associates, LLC Irving, TX Jun 20, 2016 $185,000
Practice Director Perficient, Inc. Chicago, IL Jul 29, 2016 $185,000 -
$195,000
Practice Director KPI Partners, Inc. Matthews, NC Dec 10, 2013 $185,000
Practice Director Techaspect Solutions, Inc. Bothell, WA Apr 28, 2015 $185,000
Practice Director (SAP) Sparta Consulting Inc. Hazelwood, MO Sep 30, 2016 $180,000
Senior Practice Director KPI Partners, Inc. Newark, CA Jul 12, 2015 $180,000
Practice Director Inspirage LLC Bellevue, WA Aug 10, 2015 $169,000
Practice Director-Consulting Services Intueor Consulting, Inc. Irvine, CA Sep 17, 2013 $168,000
Practice Director Blueprint Consulting Services, LLC Redmond, WA Oct 07, 2013 $167,440 -
$200,000
Practice Director Accretive Solutions-Northern California, Inc. Mountain View, CA Oct 24, 2013 $165,600
Practice Director UST Global Inc. Aliso Viejo, CA Feb 10, 2015 $165,000
Practice Director UST Global Inc. San Jose, CA Dec 31, 2015 $165,000
Practice Director UST Global Inc. Aliso Viejo, CA Aug 09, 2016 $165,000
Global Practice Director-Network Urban Science Applications, Inc. Detroit, MI Sep 22, 2014 $165,000 -
$215,000
Practice Director APPS Associates, LLC Acton, MA Oct 06, 2014 $154,000
Consulting Practice Director Oracle America, Inc. Miami, FL Jan 16, 2015 $152,670 -
$197,488
Practice Director Sparta Consulting Inc. Folsom, CA Mar 01, 2013 $150,000
Practice Director Inspirage LLC Bellevue, WA Jun 29, 2015 $150,000
National Practice Director, Connected Systems Neudesic, LLC Bellevue, WA Mar 27, 2013 $150,000 -
$175,000
Director, Practice Services Ca, Inc. Coral Gables, FL Jul 06, 2015 $147,000
Practice Director APPS Associates, LLC Berkeley Heights, NJ May 02, 2014 $146,827

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Top Skills for A Practice Director

ServiceDeliveryFinancialStrategicInitiativesBusinessDevelopmentActivitiesConsultantsProjectManagementPComplianceHumanResourcesProfessionalServicesERPHealthcareArchitectureBusinessProcessOversightInfrastructureCRMAdditionalWebGovernance

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Top Practice Director Skills

  1. Service Delivery
  2. Financial
  3. Strategic Initiatives
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Relocated to Europe for a 2-year period while building a European service delivery team.
  • Designed and implemented an activation support model that focused clinical and financial experts throughout an organization's activation.
  • Work closely with senior management on strategic initiatives and innovating business processes.
  • Support business development activities by leveraging business contacts, defining scope, setting objectives, developing solutions and closing deals.
  • Directed consultants in the execution of daily business operations and delivery of client solutions.

Top Practice Director Employers

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