GIS manager job skills, salary, and description
GIS managers don’t necessarily need strong technical skills in GIS. It’s a big plus if they do. But they don’t have to.
With their main focus on managing budgets, employees, and business development, GIS managers need good organizational skills with solid public speaking skills.
Your days will be booked with a lot of these. For example, this includes spreadsheets, email, phone calls, and meetings. GIS managers often are project and departmental managers taking on several other roles.
How much can you earn? What types of skills do you need to become a GIS manager?
The Payscale of a GIS Manager
In general, GIS managers are the highest level of pay you can earn in the field of GIS. They can earn higher than most GIS developers and specialists in their field.
What is the average GIS manager’s salary? The average GIS project manager makes more than $105,000 and sits on top of the GIS salary pyramid.
READ MORE: GIS Salary Expectations: Climb the GIS Career Ladder
Advantages and Disadvantages
GIS managers always have to do more in less time. They work on business development for the long-term benefits and values of GIS in an organization. It takes years of experience to become a GIS manager. Not only do you manage GIS projects, but you manage the people who make the projects happen.
Planting the GIS seeds in an organization means GIS managers are usually the beneficiaries of the highest pay. They manage the workload and direction of staff including GIS technicians, cartographers, programmers, and GIS analysts.
Even though GIS managers have a good overall basis of GIS, they don’t necessarily need the skills of a GIS technician or analyst. But their staff will respect them more if they have solid working knowledge in GIS. According to Indeed job trends, GIS managers are one of the highest in demand.
GIS Manager – Job Duties
What are some of the daily tasks of a GIS manager?
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT involves anything from public speaking, technical writing & editing, and budgeting. Also, business management entails project management, teaching/training for personnel management, and sales/marketing.
TEAM LEADERSHIP GIS managers lead their team to achieve a common goal in a GIS project. Staff includes various skill levels in GIS professionals, developers, and drafters. They assign and delegate tasks for the production of mapping products, reports, and applications.
Get the credentials you need to succeed as a GIS manager. Here are hand-picked courses to lead GIS teams:
- Data Product Manager Nanodegree Course
- Leading People and Teams Course
- Strategic Leadership and Management Course
GIS Manager Complimentary Job Duties
CARTOGRAPHY is the study of creating maps. The origin comes from “charta” – “tablet or leaf of paper” and graph – “to draw”. Instead of creating map products, GIS managers often have to review maps. This includes anything from softcopy mapping, web mapping to ordinary map design.
DATABASE MANAGEMENT offers insight on how to store and extract information from structured sets of geographic data. Instead of performing everyday operations, GIS managers have the foresight to assure quality control for database development. This means they will need knowledge for data management, database administration, and asset management consulting
SPATIAL ANALYSIS uses techniques to manipulate, extract, locate and analyze geographic data. For example, spatial analysis examples include buffering, clipping, and exploring the relationships between map features. GIS managers will have to provide input for GIS modeling, data integration & conversion, data analysis, and geomatics.
GIS Manager – Example Tasks
What is the typical job description for a GIS manager and what kind of roles do you expect from this position?
- Manage a diverse GIS project portfolio, guiding project decisions regarding technical approach, cost implications, and project scheduling.
- Engage in business development and take responsibility for project execution, and oversight of GIS team members, sub-contractors, and consultants to ensure the highest quality of work is provided to our clients
- Experience managing staff in a team environment with an ability to oversee and manage complex projects
- Show proven client management, organization, and communication skills required
If you’re looking to get the right credentials to get started as a GIS manager, take a look at the Project Management Professional Certificate offered by Google, which is a great way to get started into project management.
Salaries From Around the World
What you can expect to make depends on where you live and the size of the company you work for.
Depending on where you live, here’s how much GIS manager’s salaries are in different currencies around the world: