With the increasingly strategic role IT plays in organizations, modern enterprises need professionals with information technology management (IT management) skills. In recent years, the role of the IT manager has evolved from being merely a technology specialist to being a custodian of the enterprise’s IT infrastructure and resources and a steward of IT governance and strategy. IT managers are also responsible for interpreting and implementing rules and regulations like Sarbanes-Oxley (SOx) and managing critical IT services for the enterprise at large, its partners and its customers. Below we explore in more detail a few of the most common responsibilities assigned to IT managers across varying roles and organizations.
IT Planning and Implementation
IT managers are often responsible for the selection or design of information technology as well as its implementation within the organization. Depending on their level in management, they may have very hands-on involvement in this work or oversee it more generally to ensure that it is done in a way that aligns with business needs and objectives. Within this responsibility, IT managers are generally concerned about factors such as the capacity, continuity, availability and security of IT solutions.
All organizations, and especially those in government, financial, mortgage, service and healthcare industries, must comply with regulations around the protection of the confidential and sensitive information they interact with and store. Even when formal rules don’t exist, customers and other key stakeholders count on businesses to ensure the security of their information. To achieve this, organizations need an IT governance strategy with audit and control processes. Generally, IT managers are the people responsible for designing the organization’s control structure along with its goals and objectives, auditing their IT infrastructure against this structure, and establishing remediation procedures to fix any issues identified.
IT Service Management
Managing IT today entails more than just managing the technology inside the organization; it is often about managing a set of services provided either to staff within the organization, to outside organizations or to individual consumers. Information technology service management (ITSM) involves organizing IT as a set of services in a way that serves strategic business objectives. IT managers oversee these services provided to internal and/or external customers to ensure things such as service quality and ongoing process improvement.
Team and Project Management
Another key job of an IT manager is to set and prioritize goals and keep their department or project team focused and aligned on key objectives. IT managers help lead teams to define scope, timeline and budget, organize and assign tasks, and ensure that all work is completed efficiently and effectively. This work can include leading meetings, preparing presentations, motivating team members and finding ways to celebrate team accomplishments. IT managers also help to solve organizational, communication and technical issues as they arise.
IT Budget Management
IT funding is not an unlimited resource. To be effective in their roles, IT managers need to plan, understand and work within organizational and team budgets. They’ll also need to guide fellow employees in making smart choices to remain within that budget. If leaders don’t closely manage their budget, expenses can quickly spiral and hinder the ability of an IT team to accomplish their mission.
Interested in a Career in IT Management?
The South University Bachelor of Science in Information Technology program provides students with strong foundational coursework focused on key IT competencies. Students in the program may choose to pursue a specialization in Information Technology Management, which is designed to prepare program graduates to exercise a leadership role within the IT department of an organization. Our IT Management specialization track covers topics in business and management along with the technical skills essential to planning and implementing reliable IT in organizations.