Geographic Information Systems Technicians
SOC: 15-1199.05


Assist scientists, technologists, or related professionals in building, maintaining, modifying, or using geographic information systems (GIS) databases. May also perform some custom application development or provide user support.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
233,000 employed

Projected (2024):
240,800 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • Business Analyst
  • Cartographer
  • Cartographic Technician
  • Geographic Information Systems Analyst (GIS Analyst)
  • Geographic Information Systems Coordinator (GIS Coordinator)
  • Geographic Information Systems Mapping Technician (GIS Mapping Technician)
  • Geographic Information Systems Specialist (GIS Specialist)
  • Geographic Information Systems Technician (GIS Technician)
  • Geographical Information System Specialist (GIS Specialist)
  • Geographical Information System Technician (GIS Technician)
  • Geologist
  • Geospatial Specialist
  • Geospatial Technician
  • Global Position System Technician (GPS Technician)
  • Global Positioning System Field Technician (GPS Field Technician)
  • Global Positioning Systems Analyst Technician (GPS Analyst Technician)
  • Information Technology Specialist (IT Specialist)
  • Technical Support Specialist

  • Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed


    A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.


    Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Equipment Selection
  • Programming
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • History and Archeology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Recommend procedures or equipment or software upgrades to increase data accessibility or ease of use.
  • Provide technical support to users or clients regarding the maintenance, development, or operation of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) databases, equipment, or applications.
  • Read current literature, talk with colleagues, continue education, or participate in professional organizations or conferences to keep abreast of developments in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology, equipment, or systems.
  • Confer with users to analyze, configure, or troubleshoot applications.
  • Select cartographic elements needed for effective presentation of information.
  • Transfer or rescale information from original photographs onto maps or other photographs.
  • Review existing or incoming data for currency, accuracy, usefulness, quality, or completeness of documentation.
  • Interpret aerial or ortho photographs.
  • Analyze Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data to identify spatial relationships or display results of analyses, using maps, graphs, or tabular data.
  • Perform geospatial data building, modeling, or analysis, using advanced spatial analysis, data manipulation, or cartography software.
  • Maintain or modify existing Geographic Information Systems (GIS) databases.
  • Enter data into Geographic Information Systems (GIS) databases, using techniques such as coordinate geometry, keyboard entry of tabular data, manual digitizing of maps, scanning or automatic conversion to vectors, or conversion of other sources of digital data.
  • Design or prepare graphic representations of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data, using GIS hardware or software applications.
  • Design or coordinate the development of integrated Geographic Information Systems (GIS) spatial or non-spatial databases.
  • Analyze Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data for use in urban planning applications that promote better land use or reduce environmental impacts of development.
  • Analyze Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data to determine the best locations for renewable energy sites, including solar or wind energy installations.
  • Apply Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data in transportation routing settings to determine the best routing to reduce pollution or energy consumption.
  • Confer with biologists or other researchers in the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data to define wildlife areas or corridors for land use planning.
  • Participate in projects that map changes in carbon emissions levels across different geographic locations, using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Computer data input scanners
  • Computer laser printers
  • Desktop computers
  • Digital cameras
  • Digitizers
  • Global positioning system GPS receivers
  • Laptop computers
  • Large-format plotters
  • Laser facsimile machines
  • Mainframe computers
  • Multi-line telephone systems
  • Personal computers
  • Photocopying equipment
  • Plotters
  • Portable data collectors
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop software
  • Autodesk AutoCAD software
  • Autodesk Land Desktop
  • Autodesk MapGuide software
  • Autodesk Topobase
  • Bentley Microstation
  • C
  • Computer aided design and drafting software CADD
  • Coordinate geometry COGO software
  • dBASE
  • Email software
  • ESRI ArcEditor
  • ESRI ArcGIS Geostatistical Analyst
  • ESRI ArcGIS software
  • ESRI ArcGIS Spatial Analyst
  • ESRI ArcInfo
  • ESRI ArcView
  • Extensible markup language XML
  • GIS software
  • Global positioning system GPS software
  • Hypertext markup language HTML
  • IBM WebSphere
  • JavaScript
  • Landmark Graphics GeoGraphix software
  • List processing language LISP
  • Microsoft .NET Framework
  • Microsoft Access
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office SharePoint Server MOSS
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications VBA
  • Microsoft Visual C#
  • Microsoft Visual C++
  • Microsoft Visual Studio
  • Microsoft Word
  • Oracle JavaServer Pages JSP
  • Oracle software
  • Practical extraction and reporting language Perl
  • Python
  • Relational database management system RDMS
  • SAP BusinessObjects Crystal Reports
  • SAP software
  • Structured query language SQL
  • Sun Microsystems Java
  • Trimble Pathfinder Office
  • Web browser software

  • computer and mathematical

    industry stats

    SOC: 15-0000

    Total Employed: 4,005,250

    Average Annual Salary: $86,170