IT Director Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: January 10, 2022

An IT Director, or Information Technology Director, oversees the IT department and other technical operations within an organization. Their main duties include identifying the organization’s IT needs, adding updates and enhancements to current computer systems and ensuring employees’ technical issues are resolved efficiently.


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IT director duties and responsibilities

IT Directors use advanced skills to manage all technology components of the business. IT Directors have the following responsibilities:

  • Identify technology needs and make recommendations to business decision-makers
  • Evaluate the company’s adherence to federal technology requirements for security 
  • Manage the IT team including developers, security analysts, support technicians and vendors
  • Maintain company hardware and software programs
  • Update technological equipment in the company
  • Implement company-wide technology updates and hold sessions to teach employees on new features


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What does an IT Director do?

IT Directors typically work as a leader in the information technology department of an organization overseeing team members as they build and update computer systems that align with the business’ organizational goals. They’ll develop, launch and enhance the organization’s applications according to the standards and objectives set by the company. 

IT Directors also collaborate closely with other departments to understand their IT requirements, needs and preferences and will install these systems accordingly. They also regularly scan and evaluate the organization’s current systems to find any risks, vulnerabilities and improvement opportunities. IT Directors will then meet with the leadership team to propose and recommend any new software to help the company meet their organizational goals.


IT Director skills and qualifications

IT Directors typically have certain prerequisite skills or certifications, which include:

  • Excellent written and verbal communication
  • Problem-solving and critical-thinking skills
  • Ability to lead and teach others 
  • Up-to-date knowledge of latest IT developments
  • Ability to explain highly technical concepts in simple terms
  • Knowledge of best computer security practices
  • Good research and analysis skills


IT Director salary expectations

An IT Director makes an average of $129,909 per year. Salary may depend on level of experience, education and the geographical location.


IT Director education and training requirements

A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in computer science is often a requirement to work as an IT director, but many hiring managers may prefer a master’s degree. Some IT Directors also have a degree in related industries, like computer engineering, cybersecurity or information technology. Some hiring managers may prefer that IT Director candidates have relevant classwork in business administration in order to work as a director. IT Directors get most of their training through experience, though companies offer on-the-job training to instruct them on the basic IT needs.


IT Director experience requirements

Previous experience working in information technology and in a leadership role is required to work as an IT Director. Many IT Directors will begin in an entry-level IT Technician role and then work their way up to a management position. IT Directors usually need at least 10 years of experience in information technology and at least five years of management experience. A master’s degree can serve as a substitute for some experience. 


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Frequently asked questions about IT Directors


Who reports to an IT Director?

Members of the IT team will typically report to the IT Director if they have trouble finding a solution to a complex computer issue. IT Directors often have extensive years of experience and knowledge working with computer systems, so they’ll provide guidance and advice to their team regularly. 

They’re also responsible for understanding the skill set and preferences of their team to properly delegate tasks according to their strengths. If employees are having any problems with their computer systems, they’ll typically report these to the IT Director, who will work to resolve the problem. 


What's the difference between an IT Director and an IT Manager?

Though they both install and update various software systems for organizations, their roles typically vary according to seniority. IT Managers usually work in a larger organization and are more hands-on with the IT team. They’ll often work closely to help the IT team complete certain tasks assigned by the IT Director. 

The IT Director works in a higher position than the IT Manager and will regularly engage with the leadership team and the stakeholders. They’ll then relay any important organizational goals or technical needs to the IT Manager and their team. Some businesses with smaller IT teams may only employ an IT Director who does the job of both roles and collaborates closely with the IT and leadership teams.


Do IT Directors have different responsibilities in different industries?

IT Directors can work in a wide variety of industries where they complete similar tasks of installing, fixing and updating certain software systems. Most IT Directors serve on a team of IT workers, identifying issues with the computer systems and assigning tasks to resolve them. Some IT Directors work in an agency setting, providing support and enhancements to clients in different offices and organizations. 

There are also IT Directors who may work in the healthcare industry, installing and repairing systems to help medical facilities function more efficiently. Other IT Directors work in a government setting, helping various entities install and update computer systems that help them more effectively serve and interact with community members. 


What makes a good IT Director?

A good IT Director should have strong technical skills to help them resolve complex issues with various software and application systems. They must also have strong leadership abilities to effectively delegate tasks and teach their IT team how to repair and install different computer systems. An IT Director must have strong communication abilities, as they regularly meet with their IT team and the leadership team to define organizational goals and provide updates on system enhancements.

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