Employment of information security analysts, web developers, and computer network architects is projected to grow 22 percent from 2010 to 2020, faster than the average for all occupations.
Demand for information security analysts is expected to be very high. Cyberattacks have grown in frequency and sophistication over the last few years, and many organizations are behind in their ability to detect these attacks. Analysts will be needed to come up with innovative ways to prevent hackers from stealing critical information or creating havoc on computer networks.
The federal government is expected to greatly increase its hiring of information security analysts to protect the nation’s critical information technology (IT) systems. In addition, as the healthcare industry expands its use of electronic medical records, ensuring patients’ privacy and protecting personal data are becoming more important. More information security analysts are likely to be needed to create the safeguards that will satisfy patients’ concerns.
Demand for computer network architects will increase as firms continue to expand their use of wireless and mobile networks. This occupation will be needed to design and build these new networks, as well as upgrade existing ones. In addition, the expansion of healthcare information technology will cause an increase in the use of networking technology in that industry, and more computer network architects will be employed there.
Adoption of cloud computing, which allows users to access storage, software, and other computer services over the Internet, is likely to cause a decrease in the demand for computer network architects. Organizations will no longer have to design and build networks in-house; instead, this will be done by firms that provide cloud services. However, because architects at cloud providers can work on more than one organization’s network, these providers will not have to employ as many architects as individual organizations to do the same amount of work, thereby reducing the overall need for network architects.
Employment of web developers is expected to grow as ecommerce continues to grow. Online purchasing is expected to continue to grow faster than the overall retail industry. As retail firms expand their online offerings, demand for web developers will increase.
Because websites can be built from anywhere in the world, some web developer jobs may be moved to countries with lower wages, lessening U.S. job growth. However, this practice may decline because of a growing trend of firms hiring workers in low-cost areas of the U.S. instead of in foreign countries.
Prospects for information security analysts should be good. Information security analysts with related work experience will have the best opportunities. For example, an applicant with experience as a database administrator would have better prospects in database security than someone without that experience.
Prospects for computer network architects should be favorable, as many companies report difficulty finding network architects due to the considerable amount of education and work experience required for these highly skilled positions.
Web developers’ job prospects should also be favorable. Those with knowledge of multiple programming languages and digital multimedia tools, such as Flash and Photoshop, will have the best opportunities.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition