For any organization to compete and survive against other businesses, it has to spend on information technology (IT), which ensures operating efficiency, data integrity and compliance. However, with the rise in external and internal threats, companies’ IT systems could be exposed to security risks. This is where the knowledge and skills of an IT auditor come into play.
IT auditors are responsible for assessing and analyzing a company’s IT system to ensure systems and processes run efficiently and accurately. They can find work in any sector that requires auditing of its IT systems, including finance, energy, consulting, accounting and government. With IT jobs projected to grow by 13% between 2016 and 2026, there’ll be plenty of job opportunities for years to come. Think of it this way: where there’s IT, you have a career!
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the IT auditor position. What are the requirements? How much can you earn? What will your long-term growth prospects look like? These are just a few of the things we’ll explore using the CyberSeek Career Pathway tool.
This entry-level role is a great foundation for breaking into the field of information technology. The technical skills you acquire as an IT auditor will open up several routes to mid-level careers like cybersecurity consultant and penetration and vulnerability tester.
Brief overview of CyberSeek Career Pathway
CyberSeek Career Pathway will help you learn the ins and outs of the IT auditor position. The tool is basically an interactive site that hosts the latest information about cybersecurity and IT jobs.
So who benefits from this robust career tool?
If you’re in college and contemplating entering the information technology field, this is a great jumping-off point. Career Pathway will educate you on what to expect as an IT analyst. From expected income to training to educational requirements, you’ll get all the details you need to make a sound decision whether or not IT auditor is the right profession for you.
Job seekers and IT professionals
If you’ve been in the IT field for a while and are looking to make a switch to the IT auditor role from an entry-level position, Career Pathway will help you discover what skills you should acquire and what certifications (if any) you should pursue to make a seamless transition into your new role. In addition, you can use the tool to visualize what your career will look like over a long period, from entry-level to mid-level management positions.
What does an IT auditor do?
The most common duties that you will perform as an IT auditor will be the collection and evaluation of a company’s IT systems, operations and practices. Carrying out the audits is a major aspect of the position, naturally, and will consist of not only checking systems for remote vulnerabilities but also reviewing business and financial controls within an organization. IT auditors, however, don’t implement any fixes; they just provide an independent evaluation of security controls and policies.
You can expect to earn around $86,000 a year, according to the CyberSeek Career Pathway tool. Keep in mind that this figure is the national average, so your exact salary may vary when you factor in your education and experience, the organization you work for and even the region of the country you live in.
Common job titles
Like many IT positions, there are different job titles a company may use when referring to the IT auditor role. Here are a few of the most common ones:
- Senior IT auditor
- IT auditor
- IT audit manager
- Senior IT internal auditor
- Senior IT compliance analyst
The majority of employers (76%) require that candidates possess a bachelor’s degree, while roughly 22% prefer graduate-level applicants. A sub-bachelor’s level of education, like an associate degree, is required by only 2% of companies. This means it’s not easy to get into the field until you finish your bachelor’s degree or graduate.
To succeed as an IT auditor, you’ll need a combination of business skills such as accounting and project management as well as technical skills that focus on information systems and risk assessment. According to CyberSeek, you should focus on acquiring the following skills:
- Internal auditing
- Information systems
- Audit planning
- Risk assessment
- Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX)
- Information security
- Audit reports
When you navigate through IT auditor job openings, you’ll notice that certifications are usually required for this position. However, not all companies demand the same certifications. This could be because of simple oversight by the recruiter, or it may be because certain certifications don’t apply to the organization in question.
According to CyberSeek, the most demanded certifications for the IT auditor role are CISSP, Information Systems Certification, CISM, ITIL and Certified Internal Auditor (CIA).
Total job openings
According to CyberSeek, there are a total of 6,915 job openings for the position of IT auditor and similar roles. The number is based on the availability of related positions listed on online job sites and is a general estimate, as the figure is based on job openings from September 2017 through August 2018.
NICE Cybersecurity Workforce Framework categories
The employment landscape in the IT and cybersecurity fields is complicated and evolving. Fortunately, the folks working at NICE (National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education) built a framework that logically organizes relevant positions into categories based on required duties and technical competencies.
The IT auditor’s role straddles the following two NICE categories:
- Oversee and Govern: Gather and maintain data, analyze policy needs and monitor the rigorous implementation of policies in the delivery of management initiatives
- Securely Provision: Designs, procures, manages and/or sets up secure IT systems, with accountabilities for aspects of infrastructure and/or network creation
Clicking on either of these headings in Career Pathway will provide you with an extensive drop-down list of skills, abilities and knowledge that IT auditors master in the workplace.
Future career options
A career of an IT auditor will equip you with a versatile set of skills that you can then apply to support yourself on various career paths within the industry. It’s this resourcefulness and the vast range of career trajectories that make IT auditor roles such a great foundation for information technology professionals.
When you’re ready to take up mid-level positions, you have a number of choices. Two are:
- Cybersecurity consultant
- Penetration and vulnerability Tester
When you’re seeking options, having an interactive map definitely helps. When your goal is a job in IT, you have a handy guide at your fingertips in the shape of CyberSeek Career Path. The tool has the steps mapped out for you, including the number of available openings and the earning potential from jobs like IT auditor.
Whether you’re starting out in the IT field or you’re an experienced professional with one more requirement to meet before you qualify for the IT auditor job, you can use this tool to find your way.