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Working As A Senior, Computer System Analyst

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Processing Information
  • Getting Information
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $88,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior, Computer System Analyst 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.

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How To Become A Senior, Computer System Analyst

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 Length of Employment
Technical Analyst 2.8 years
Top Careers Before Senior, Computer System Analyst
Consultant 4.0%
Specialist 3.3%
Top Careers After Senior, Computer System Analyst
Consultant 10.3%

Do you work as a Senior, Computer System Analyst?

Average Yearly Salary
$88,000
Show Salaries
$70,000
Min 10%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$88,000
Median 50%
$112,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
P G& E
Highest Paying City
Washington, DC
Highest Paying State
New York
Avg Experience Level
4.6 years
How much does a Senior, Computer System Analyst make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Senior, Computer System Analyst in the United States is $88,687 per year or $43 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $70,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $112,000.

The largest raises come from changing jobs.

See what's out there.

Real Senior, Computer System Analyst Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
SR. Computer Systems Analyst BAHA Industries Corp. DBA Open Systems Technologies Feb 27, 2015 $160,000
Computer Systems Analyst-Senior Systems Engineer Newt Global Consulting, LLC May 02, 2016 $148,000
SR. Computer Systems Analyst Rxlogix Corporation Oct 01, 2015 $145,000
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Int. Programming & Systems, Inc. Jun 30, 2016 $138,500
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Message Broadcast, LLC Dec 12, 2016 $138,000
Computer Systems Analyst/Senior Software Design Engineer Flotek Industries, Inc. Sep 01, 2015 $135,000
Project Lead/Sr. Computer Systems Analyst Thomson Reuters Markets LLC Sep 05, 2016 $131,747
SR. Computer Systems Analyst Openwave Computing LLC Oct 28, 2016 $130,666
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Lab49 Inc. Sep 15, 2015 $130,000 -
$170,000
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Etouch Systems Corporation Sep 28, 2016 $130,000
SR. Computer Systems Analyst (CIS Manager) Meditab Software, Inc. Jun 15, 2015 $129,251
SR. Specialist-Technology/Computer Systems Analyst Synechron, Inc. Mar 25, 2016 $129,030
SR. Specialist-Technology/Computer Systems Analyst Synechron, Inc. Apr 13, 2016 $129,030
Computer Systems Analyst (Senior Field Engineer) EMC Corporation Sep 14, 2015 $128,925 -
$174,675
Senior Computer Systems Analyst United Software Group, Inc. Mar 25, 2016 $97,718
Senior Computer Systems Analyst United Software Group, Inc. Nov 20, 2015 $97,718
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Strategic Systems, Inc. Sep 30, 2015 $97,718
Senior Computer Systems Analyst United Software Group, Inc. May 01, 2015 $97,718
Senior Computer Systems Analyst United Software Group, Inc. Jul 01, 2015 $97,718
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Mastech, Inc., A Mastech Holdings, Inc. Company Jan 04, 2016 $97,448 -
$112,448
Senior Computer System Analyst Hyundai Autoever Telematics America Inc. Jun 30, 2016 $97,058 -
$104,520
Senior Computer Systems Analyst Icon Technologies. Inc. Sep 05, 2016 $97,000
SR. Computer Systems Analyst My3Tech Inc. Mar 06, 2016 $84,261
SR. Computer Systems Analyst Expicient Inc. Sep 14, 2016 $84,000 -
$102,000
Computer Systems Analyst (Senior SAP OMS Implementer) MQR Technologies LLC May 27, 2015 $84,000
SR. Computer System Analyst Expicient Inc. Sep 14, 2016 $84,000 -
$102,000
SR. Computer Systems Analyst Synergetic Information Systems, Inc. Jan 08, 2016 $84,000
Sr.Computer Systems Analyst Expicient Inc. Sep 14, 2016 $84,000 -
$102,000

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Top Skills for A Senior, Computer System Analyst

  1. Windows XP
  2. Data Integrity
  3. Pl/Sql
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Administrated Active Directory and supported hospital users in Windows XP environments.
  • Maintain data files and monitor system configuration to ensure data integrity, availability and confidentiality.
  • Provide Functional / Technical expertise to database migration between billing systems using SQL*Loader and PL/SQL during Alltel acquisition of markets.
  • Created Technical Requirements from Functional/Business Requirements for ABAP developers.
  • Analyzed requirements and established database processes to effectively test computer system.

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Top 10 Best States for Seniors, Computer System Analyst

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Virginia
  3. New York
  4. New Jersey
  5. Delaware
  6. Maryland
  7. Pennsylvania
  8. North Carolina
  9. Rhode Island
  10. Connecticut
  • (489 jobs)
  • (1,577 jobs)
  • (1,048 jobs)
  • (594 jobs)
  • (78 jobs)
  • (820 jobs)
  • (639 jobs)
  • (608 jobs)
  • (50 jobs)
  • (245 jobs)

Senior, Computer System Analyst Demographics

Gender

Male

77.7%

Female

18.4%

Unknown

3.9%
Ethnicity

White

56.1%

Black or African American

14.1%

Hispanic or Latino

13.7%

Asian

10.6%

Unknown

5.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

100.0%

Senior, Computer System Analyst Education

Schools

University of Maryland - University College

6.3%

James Madison University

6.3%

Rockland Community College

6.3%

Emory University

6.3%

Jackson Community College

6.3%

Strayer University

6.3%

Lamar University

6.3%

Colorado Technical University

6.3%

Bellevue University

6.3%

Northeastern University

6.3%

Northern Virginia Community College

6.3%

Oakland Community College

6.3%

Chippewa Valley Technical College

3.1%

University of Baltimore

3.1%

Moraine Valley Community College

3.1%

University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

3.1%

Arizona State University

3.1%

Western Governors University

3.1%

Cisco Junior College

3.1%

Saint Edward's University

3.1%
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Majors

Computer Science

27.0%

Management Information Systems

11.3%

Business

9.6%

Information Technology

6.1%

Electrical Engineering

6.1%

Finance

5.2%

Management

4.3%

Project Management

3.5%

Computer Information Systems

3.5%

Computer Systems Security

3.5%

Criminal Justice

3.5%

Mechanical Engineering

2.6%

Computer Networking

2.6%

Computer Engineering

2.6%

Mathematics

1.7%

General Studies

1.7%

Physics

1.7%

Counseling Psychology

1.7%

Political Science

0.9%

General Education, Specific Areas

0.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

40.3%

Masters

28.6%

Associate

20.2%

Certificate

5.0%

High School Diploma

4.2%

Diploma

1.7%
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Updated May 18, 2020