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Become A Systems Analyst Programmer

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Working As A Systems Analyst Programmer

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

  • Repetitive

  • $76,050

    Average Salary

What Does A Systems Analyst Programmer 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 Systems Analyst Programmer

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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Systems Analyst Programmer jobs

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Systems Analyst Programmer Career Paths

Systems Analyst Programmer
Senior Programmer Analyst Senior Consultant Information Technology Manager
Chief Information Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Manager Senior Manager Director Of Information
Director Information Technology Infrastructure
13 Yearsyrs
Senior Software Engineer Senior Systems Engineer Systems Administrator
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Project Leader Systems Manager Information Systems Manager
Director Of Information Services
9 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Senior Manager Director Of Information
Director Of Information Technology Services
12 Yearsyrs
Software Engineer Senior Software Engineer
Director Of Software Development
12 Yearsyrs
Software Developer Technical Consultant Network Administrator
Information Systems Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Senior Software Engineer Business Analyst Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Systems Analyst Senior Software Engineer Senior Systems Engineer
Information Technology Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Software Developer Systems Analyst Information Technology Manager
Information Technology Systems Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Product Manager Senior Product Manager
Product Management Director
12 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager Director Of Information
Senior Director Of Information & Technology
13 Yearsyrs
Software Engineer Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Project Leader Information Technology Specialist Information Systems Manager
Senior Manager-Systems
12 Yearsyrs
Senior Systems Analyst Project Manager
Senior Project Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Senior Systems Analyst
Senior Software Engineer
6 Yearsyrs
Information Technology Manager Director Of Information
Vice President Information Systems
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Programmer Analyst Senior Systems Analyst Information Technology Manager
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Systems Programmer 5.2 years
Programmer Analyst 4.0 years
Senior Programmer 3.4 years
Systems Analyst 3.4 years
Systems Developer 3.4 years
Senior Analyst 3.3 years
Systems Architect 3.2 years
Systems Integrator 3.2 years
Lead Programmer 3.1 years
Business Analyst 3.0 years
Systems Consultant 3.0 years
Analyst Lead 2.9 years
Technical Analyst 2.8 years
Design Analyst 2.8 years
Automation Analyst 2.7 years
Programmer 2.6 years
Software Analyst 2.6 years
Developer Analyst 2.5 years
Analyst 2.4 years
Solutions Analyst 2.4 years
Junior Programmer 1.8 years
Top Employers Before
Programmer 10.9%
Consultant 5.1%
Top Employers After
Consultant 8.9%

Systems Analyst Programmer Demographics

Gender

Male

70.3%

Female

27.1%

Unknown

2.6%
Ethnicity

White

70.6%

Asian

14.1%

Hispanic or Latino

11.5%

Unknown

2.9%

Black or African American

0.9%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

47.4%

Portuguese

10.5%

French

7.0%

Chinese

5.3%

Japanese

5.3%

German

3.5%

Romanian

3.5%

Tagalog

3.5%

Arabic

3.5%

Catalan

1.8%

Carrier

1.8%

Mandarin

1.8%

Korean

1.8%

Thai

1.8%

Italian

1.8%
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Systems Analyst Programmer Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

15.7%

University of Houston

6.7%

George Mason University

5.6%

University of Central Florida

5.6%

More Tech Institute

5.6%

University of Maryland - College Park

5.1%

Oklahoma State University

5.1%

New York University

4.5%

University of Maryland - University College

4.5%

Rochester Institute of Technology

4.5%

Strayer University

4.5%

Texas State University

3.9%

Texas A&M University

3.9%

Carnegie Mellon University

3.9%

University of West Florida

3.9%

Robert Morris University

3.4%

University of North Florida

3.4%

Illinois State University

3.4%

Temple University

3.4%

Georgia State University

3.4%
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Majors

Computer Science

32.0%

Business

13.4%

Computer Information Systems

9.5%

Management Information Systems

5.5%

Information Systems

4.4%

Mathematics

4.3%

Information Technology

4.2%

Computer Engineering

3.8%

Electrical Engineering

3.0%

Computer Programming

2.7%

Project Management

2.6%

Computer Applications

2.5%

Management

2.3%

Accounting

2.1%

Education

1.8%

Finance

1.5%

Economics

1.2%

Data Processing

1.1%

Engineering

1.1%

Information Sciences

1.1%
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Degrees

Bachelors

45.1%

Masters

26.7%

Other

14.4%

Associate

7.6%

Certificate

3.5%

Doctorate

1.6%

Diploma

1.1%

License

0.1%
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Real Systems Analyst Programmer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Systems Programmer/Analyst CTS Technical Services, Inc. Renton, WA Aug 31, 2015 $145,151
Systems Analyst Programmer Manager Client Network Services, Inc. Rockville, MD Dec 01, 2015 $133,929
Systems Programmer Analyst Matrix Resources, Inc. Charlotte, NC May 04, 2016 $126,760
Programmer Analyst, Theory Digital & Ecommerce Systems Fast Retailing USA, Inc. New York, NY Dec 14, 2015 $120,000
Programmer/Systems Analyst Engenius Consulting Group, Inc. Suwanee, GA Feb 14, 2016 $116,872
Systems Analyst and Programmer Agustawestland Philadelphia Corporation Philadelphia, PA May 18, 2016 $115,000
Systems Programmer Analyst Matrix Resources, Inc. Charlotte, NC May 09, 2016 $111,000 -
$130,000
Systems Analyst Programmer Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center Seattle, WA Feb 06, 2016 $110,040
Systems Programmer Analyst Matrix Resources, Inc. Charlotte, NC Jul 14, 2015 $110,000 -
$130,000
Systems Programmer Analyst Matrix Resources, Inc. Charlotte, NC Jun 15, 2016 $110,000 -
$130,000
System Programmer Analyst First Investors Corporation Edison, NJ Oct 02, 2015 $110,000
System Programmer Analyst Foresters Financial Services, Inc. Edison, NJ Oct 28, 2015 $110,000
Systems/Programmer Analyst Sarga Solutions Inc. Herndon, VA Aug 22, 2015 $76,503
Systems/Programmer Analyst Sarga Solutions Inc. Herndon, VA Sep 14, 2015 $76,503
Programmer Analyst/System Analyst Focus It Inc. Parsippany-Troy Hills, NJ Apr 29, 2015 $76,211
Systems/Programmer Analyst Blossom Solutions, Inc. Ellicott City, MD Apr 25, 2016 $76,000
Systems/Programmer Analyst Blossom Solutions, Inc. Ellicott City, MD Jun 21, 2016 $76,000
Systems/Programmer Analyst Blossom Solutions, Inc. Ellicott City, MD Sep 01, 2016 $76,000
Systems Analyst/Programmer Publix Super Markets, Inc. Lakeland, FL Oct 19, 2015 $75,595
Programmer/Systems Analyst Humetis Technologies, Inc. North Brunswick, NJ Aug 04, 2015 $75,442
Systems Programmer/Analyst CMC Americas, Inc. Pittsburgh, PA Sep 01, 2015 $64,700
Systems Programmer/Analyst II UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside West Chester, PA Jan 11, 2015 $64,614
Professional: System Programmer Analyst Computer Sciences Corporation Roseland, NJ Feb 08, 2016 $64,147
Systems Programmer Analyst Kalven Technologies, Inc. Schaumburg, IL Aug 11, 2016 $64,085
Systems/Programmer Analyst Sunray Enterprise Inc. Lexington, MA Apr 10, 2016 $64,000
Programmer/Systems Analyst Silicon Staff It Services, Inc. New York, NY Sep 08, 2015 $64,000
Systems Programmer/Data Analyst Sarga Solutions Inc. Herndon, VA Sep 17, 2015 $64,000

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Top Skills for A Systems Analyst Programmer

DatabaseDesignPl/SqlCobolIIProceduresWindowsNTWebApplicationsUnixMainframeFinancialDB2HardwareSQLServerCicsManagementSystemPayrollASPVsamHtmlEDIPC

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Top Systems Analyst Programmer Skills

  1. Database Design
  2. Pl/Sql
  3. Cobol II
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Assisted in database design and development of interactive programs for IBM Purchase List System.
  • Created core forms, reports and PL/SQL procedures to keep data in PowerVision and SAP synchronized.
  • Developed JCL for batch jobs, COBOL II programs to generate systems of records.
  • Supported development and implementation of new policies and procedures to ensure compatibility with clinical administration.
  • Rolled out conversion project and successfully converted all Windows 95 to Windows NT platform.

Top Systems Analyst Programmer Employers