This paper reports on a set of research studies conducted to identify the size and composition of the entry-level IS job market, including job types, job vacancies, and skills and attributes required of applicants. Three types of data were collected from the metropolitan area of Vancouver, Canada: mail survey data, phone survey data, and job advertisements. Analysis reveals four generic entry-level job types: programmer, analyst, user support, and technical support. To a varying degree, these jobs are available in both IS and user departments. Programmer and technical support positions are more prevalent in IS departments; user support and analyst jobs are more prevalent in user departments. Employers reported strong interest in an applicant's potential ("ability to grow and develop") and communication skills when hiring for entry-level positions. However, there was a gap between IS managers' stated preference for soft skills and the job advertisements' requirement for experience with specific programming languages and platforms. Implications for curriculum and for future research are discussed. Skills and attribute requirements differ between job types, and this information is presented as prescriptive advice to guide student preparation and MIS program content.
Reich, Blaize H.
"Entry Level Jobs for MIS Graduates: Implications for Academic Programs,"
Journal of Information Systems Education: Vol. 8
Available at: https://aisel.aisnet.org/jise/vol8/iss2/9
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