Summary Report for:
15-1121.00 - Computer Systems Analysts
Analyze science, engineering, business, and other data processing problems to implement and improve computer systems. Analyze user requirements, procedures, and problems to automate or improve existing systems and review computer system capabilities, workflow, and scheduling limitations. May analyze or recommend commercially available software.
Sample of reported job titles: Applications Analyst, Business Analyst, Business Systems Analyst, Computer Analyst, Computer Systems Analyst, Computer Systems Consultant, Information Systems Analyst (ISA), Programmer Analyst, Systems Analyst, Systems Engineer
Also see: Informatics Nurse Specialists
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Expand or modify system to serve new purposes or improve work flow.
- Test, maintain, and monitor computer programs and systems, including coordinating the installation of computer programs and systems.
- Develop, document and revise system design procedures, test procedures, and quality standards.
- Provide staff and users with assistance solving computer related problems, such as malfunctions and program problems.
- Review and analyze computer printouts and performance indicators to locate code problems, and correct errors by correcting codes.
- Consult with management to ensure agreement on system principles.
- Confer with clients regarding the nature of the information processing or computation needs a computer program is to address.
- Read manuals, periodicals, and technical reports to learn how to develop programs that meet staff and user requirements.
- Coordinate and link the computer systems within an organization to increase compatibility and so information can be shared.
- Determine computer software or hardware needed to set up or alter system.
- Supervise computer programmers or other systems analysts or serve as project leaders for particular systems projects.
- Assess the usefulness of pre-developed application packages and adapt them to a user environment.
- Analyze information processing or computation needs and plan and design computer systems, using techniques such as structured analysis, data modeling and information engineering.
- Define the goals of the system and devise flow charts and diagrams describing logical operational steps of programs.
- Train staff and users to work with computer systems and programs.
- Recommend new equipment or software packages.
- Use object-oriented programming languages, as well as client and server applications development processes and multimedia and Internet technology.
- Prepare cost-benefit and return-on-investment analyses to aid in decisions on system implementation.
- Use the computer in the analysis and solution of business problems, such as development of integrated production and inventory control and cost analysis systems.
- Specify inputs accessed by the system and plan the distribution and use of the results.
- Interview or survey workers, observe job performance or perform the job to determine what information is processed and how it is processed.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Desktop computers
- Mainframe computers
- Notebook computers
- Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers — Personal digital assistants PDA
Technology used in this occupation:
- Access software — Access management software
- Administration software — Element management software
- Analytical or scientific software — Hierarchical simulation program with integrated circuit emphasis HSPICE; SAS software; Statistical software; Structure prediction software
- Application server software — BEA WebLogic Server; Oracle Application Server
- Backup or archival software — Backup and archival software; System and data disaster recovery software
- Charting software — Microsoft Office Visio
- Compiler and decompiler software — Time sharing option TSO software
- Computer aided design CAD software — Electronic design automation EDA software; OrCAD Capture; Spectra Quest software
- Configuration management software — HyperSpace software; IBM Rational ClearCase; InstallShield software; Wise Solutions software (see all 10 examples)
- Data base management system software — Microsoft SQL Server; MySQL software; Oracle DBMS; Sybase SQL Server (see all 7 examples)
- Data base reporting software — Business intelligence software; Oracle Business Intelligence Suite; SAP BusinessObjects Crystal Reports
- Data base user interface and query software — Microsoft Access; SAP BusinessObjects Desktop Intelligence; Software asset management SAM software; Structured query language SQL (see all 5 examples)
- Data conversion software
- Desktop communications software — CrossTec NetOp Remote Control; Remote control software; Stac Software ReachOut; Symantec pcAnywhere
- Development environment software — Advanced business application programming ABAP; C; IBM Rational Rose XDE Developer; Microsoft Visual Basic (see all 16 examples)
- Enterprise application integration software — IBM WebSphere; Oracle Fusion Middleware; SAP Netweaver BW; WebFOCUS software (see all 8 examples)
- Enterprise resource planning ERP software — Oracle PeopleSoft; SAP software
- File versioning software — Version control software
- Financial analysis software — Cost estimation software
- Graphics or photo imaging software — Graphics software
- Helpdesk or call center software — Help desk software
- Internet directory services software — Active directory software
- Metadata management software — Data modeling software; Oracle Master Data Management MDM Suite; SAP Master Data Management MDM
- Object or component oriented development software — C++; Distributed component object model DCOM software; Python; Rapide (see all 12 examples)
- Object oriented data base management software — Microsoft Visual FoxPro
- Operating system software — Job control language JCL
- Pattern design software — Diagramming software; Flowchart software; Omni Group OmniGraffle
- Presentation software
- Program testing software — Compatibility testing software; Defect tracking software; IBM Rational PurifyPlus; Usability testing software (see all 23 examples)
- Project management software
- Requirements analysis and system architecture software — AcmeStudio; Popkin System Architect; Unified modeling language UML; Wright software (see all 6 examples)
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Transaction security and virus protection software — Virus scanning software
- Transaction server software — Apache software; Customer information control system CICS software; Microsoft Internet Information Service IIS; Sun Microsystems Sun ONE (see all 5 examples)
- Web platform development software — Allaire ColdFusion; Hypertext markup language HTML; PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor *; Ruby on Rails * (see all 8 examples)
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word
* Software developed by a government agency and/or distributed as freeware or shareware.
- Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
- Engineering and Technology — Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Systems Analysis — Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Programming — Writing computer programs for various purposes.
- Systems Evaluation — Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
- Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Operations Analysis — Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
- Quality Control Analysis — Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Technology Design — Generating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Troubleshooting — Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
- Mathematics — Using mathematics to solve problems.
- Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Fluency of Ideas — The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Number Facility — The ability to add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and correctly.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
- Mathematical Reasoning — The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
- Originality — The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
- Perceptual Speed — The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
- Speed of Closure — The ability to quickly make sense of, combine, and organize information into meaningful patterns.
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
- Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
- Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
- Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
- Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
- Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
- Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
Detailed Work Activities
- Manage information technology projects or system activities.
- Develop testing routines or procedures.
- Evaluate utility of software or hardware technologies.
- Monitor computer system performance to ensure proper operation.
- Modify software programs to improve performance.
- Analyze data to identify or resolve operational problems.
- Provide technical support for software maintenance or use.
- Apply information technology to solve business or other applied problems.
- Test software performance.
- Collect data about customer needs.
- Supervise information technology personnel.
- Collaborate with others to determine design specifications or details.
- Analyze project data to determine specifications or requirements.
- Read documents to gather technical information.
- Document design or development procedures.
- Write computer programming code.
- Configure computer networks.
- Coordinate software or hardware installation.
- Design integrated computer systems.
- Train others in computer interface or software use.
- Provide recommendations to others about computer hardware.
- Estimate time or monetary resources needed to complete projects.
- Identify information technology project resource requirements.
- Develop diagrams or flow charts of system operation.
- Electronic Mail — 100% responded “Every day.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 74% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 65% responded “Extremely important.”
- Telephone — 71% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Sitting — 62% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 69% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 53% responded “Very important.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 72% responded “Every day.”
- Contact With Others — 52% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Time Pressure — 40% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 36% responded “Some freedom.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 54% responded “Very important.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 45% responded “Extremely important.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 36% responded “Some freedom.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 43% responded “Important results.”
- Level of Competition — 52% responded “Highly competitive.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 34% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Letters and Memos — 34% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 43% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Physical Proximity — 45% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
- Consequence of Error — 25% responded “Very serious.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 46% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 27% responded “Every day.”
|Title||Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed|
|Education||Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.|
|Related Experience||A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.|
|Job Zone Examples||Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, database administrators, teachers, chemists, art directors, and cost estimators.|
|SVP Range||(7.0 to < 8.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
This occupation may require a background in the following science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) educational disciplines:
Interest code: ICR
- Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
- Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2014)||$39.76 hourly, $82,710 annual|
|Employment (2012)||521,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2012-2022)||Much faster than average (22% or higher)|
|Projected job openings (2012-2022)||209,600|
|Top industries (2012)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data and 2012-2022 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Computer Systems Analysts . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.
- Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) , 2 Penn Plaza, Suite 701, New York, NY 10121-0701. Phone: (800) 342-6626.
- Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) , 1815 S. Meyers Rd., Suite 300, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181-5228. Phone: (630) 678-8300. Fax: (630) 268-1384.
- IEEE Computer Society , 1730 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20036-1992. Phone: (202) 371-0101. Fax: (202) 728-9614.
- Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals (ICCP) , 2350 E. Devon Ave., Suite 115, Des Plaines, IL 60018-4610. Phone: (847) 299-4227. Fax: (847) 299-4280.
- National Workforce Center for Emerging Technologies (NWCET) , Bellevue Community College, 3000 Landerholm Circle SE, N258, Bellevue, WA 98007-6484. Phone: (425) 564-4229. Fax: (425) 564-6193.