Information Scientist

Job Description:

Information scientists manage an organisation's information resources and make sure it’s all readily available.

Job Category:
IT Industry

What you will do:

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • cataloguing, classifying and storing information
  • researching and acquiring new resources
  • making sure that information is up to date and comprehensive
  • dealing with research enquiries from colleagues, managers or clients
  • managing electronic information
  • making sure that information systems meet data protection laws
  • writing reports, briefings and website content
  • managing an information budget
  • training colleagues how to use information systems
  • managing a team of information assistants


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software
  • to have a thorough understanding of computer systems and applications
  • management skills

As well as:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • analytical thinking skills
  • customer service skills
  • the ability to use your initiative (drive)
  • the ability to work well with others (teamwork skills)
  • excellent verbal communication skills
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

To become an Information Scientist, you typically need a strong educational background in information science, library science, or a related field. While there are no specific subjects required for this career, having a foundation in certain subjects can be beneficial for pursuing higher education and developing the skills needed for this profession. Here are some relevant subjects and skills:

  1. English: Strong communication skills are essential for cataloging, indexing, and organising information effectively.
  2. Mathematics: Basic math skills are important for tasks such as data analysis and statistical reporting.
  3. Computer Science: Familiarity with computer programming, database management, and information retrieval systems is valuable in this field.
  4. Science: Subjects like biology, chemistry, or physics can provide a strong foundation in scientific research methods and data analysis.
  5. Information Technology (IT): courses related to IT can help you develop computer skills and an understanding of software and hardware systems.

Post School

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • through certification with a professional body

You could take a degree or postgraduate course – in the UK this would need to be approved by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals. Courses include:

  • information studies
  • information management
  • informatics
  • data asset management
  • library studies

Entry to postgraduate courses is very competitive and you should try to get up to a year’s work experience in a library or information services setting before you start.

You may be able to gain some of the skills and knowledge required to become an assistant information officer or an information manager apprentice, through a Management and Administration Course (T Level in the UK).

Apprenticeships relevant to this role include:

  • Library, information and archive services assistant intermediate apprenticeship
  • Information manager higher apprenticeship
  • Archivist and records manager degree apprenticeship

There may be opportunities for this role in different sectors, like education, construction, engineering, health, transport or local government.

You could start as an assistant information officer or library assistant and work your way up by training on the job.

Other Routes
In the UK, if you’re already working in information science or management, you could have your skills and knowledge certified by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals.

Working Hours and Environment:

You’ll usually work 35 to 40 hours a week, Monday to Friday. Your hours may involve flexitime or shifts.

You’ll be office-based and spend a lot of your time working at a computer. You may occasionally travel to meetings.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you may progress into senior management.

You could also become self-employed as an information systems consultant.