How to become a Geographic Information Systems Officer

Geographic information systems officers design, develop and customise geographic information systems and provide technical and analytical support to address issues such as environmental management, exploration and mining, land ownership and titles, urban and regional planning, utilities and asset management, and demographic marketing.

Personal requirements of a Geographic Information Systems Officer

  • Able to analyse and solve problems
  • Good communication and computing skills
  • Interested in the environment
  • Able to produce detailed and accurate work
  • Able to work as part of a team

Education & Training for a Geographic Information Systems Officer

To become a geographic information systems officer you usually have to complete a VET qualification in spatial information services. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have a degree with a major in geographical, spatial or geospatial science; geography; geomatics or surveying. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English, mathematics, chemistry, physics and biology are normally required. A number of universities in Australia offer degrees in these areas. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information.

Duties & Tasks of a Geographic Information Systems Officer

Geographic information systems officers may perform the following tasks:

  • manipulate and analyse data such as geographic and land information source maps and survey data
  • link spatial data for land administration purposes
  • develop and customise computer programs used in geographic information systems (GIS)
  • prepare, edit and revise cartographic output for the preparation, reproduction and publication of maps.

Working conditions for a Geographic Information Systems Officer

The cartographic and analytical output produced by geographic information systems officers is used to aid in the efficient management and use of land assets within Australia.

Employment Opportunities for a Geographic Information Systems Officer

The major employers of geographic information systems officers are federal, state, territory and local government organisations; statutory authorities; and private companies involved in land use, planning and management. There is a demand for specialist skills, ranging from systems development (designing and building geographic databases, spatial management and analysis tools, and web delivery systems) to the application of geographic information systems to provide specialist solutions in environmental, business and development activities.

Specialisations:


Cartographer

A cartographer designs, prepares and revises maps, charts, plans, three-dimensional models and spatial information databases, often using computer-based techniques and applying principles from science, mathematics and graphic design. Cartographers apply these elements to represent, analyse and manage essential spatial information that services the mining, mineral exploration, mapping, marketing, web publishing, regional planning and environmental management industries.

Avg. weekly wage:

$1,532

Future growth:

strong growth

Employment by state:

ACT 1.7%

NSW 33.4%

NT 1.2%

QLD 17.7%

SA 7.2%

TAS 1.3%

VIC 22.5%

WA 15%

Hours worked:

43.5

Unemployment:

below average

Gender split:

Proportion of male workers 89.6%

Proportion of female workers 10.4%

Education level:

Proportion of workers who have not completed Year 10: 0%

Proportion of workers who have not completed Year 12: 13.1%

Proportion of workers whose highest qualification is secondary school: 8.6%

Proportion of workers whose highest qualification is a Certificate 3 or 4: 36.3%

Proportion of workers whose highest qualification is a Diploma or Advanced Diploma: 19.9%

Proportion of workers whose highest qualification is a Bachelor degree: 14.8%

Proportion of workers whose highest qualification is a Postgraduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate: 7.2%

Age bracket:

Proprortion of workers aged below 35 years: 29.1%

Proportion of workers aged above 35 years: 71%

*The data above is sourced from the Department of Employment’s Job Outlook website.

Additional Information
Graduates and students may be eligible for membership of the Surveying and Spatial Sciences Institute and the Mapping Sciences Institute, Australia.
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