IT Salaries Still Getting Fatter

July 26, 2001 ( - The job market for IT professionals may not be as hot as it was last year, but these workers continue to command a sizable premium compared with other professions.

That premium may explain why the percentage of IT professionals casually exploring job opportunities fell from 43% in 2000 to 36% this year, while employees actually seeking jobs dropped 2%, according to the survey by Network World.

The annual survey of 1,700 respondents also revealed that IT professionals value personal time more than salary bonuses and stock options, and when asked to list the most important reasons to change jobs, respondents cited:

  • challenge of the work
  • access to new technologies and
  • compensation and benefits

More at the Top

Nevertheless, paychecks in the IT industry have grown by 7% in line with last year?s rate, and 3.6% more than the national average for all job categories. But while bonuses increased this year, they grew less than they had the previous year, up just 11%, in comparison to 28% in 2000.

Those in the top jobs, CIOs, senior vice presidents, and MIS/IT/IS directors, received increases of 12% this year. Their pay increased from an average $120,400 to $135,100, in comparison to the typical network executive who will earn $77,900 this year.

Up Lifting

For the those at the lower end of the salary scale, there are ways to make more money:

  • get certified – the average base salary for a Cisco Certified Internet Expert is 40% higher than the base salary without a certification.
  • work on the Web or in e-commerce – where managers are averaging $102,300 substantially more than LAN/WAN managers who earn $71,500.
  • move to the coast – New England, the Pacific Coast, and the South-Atlantic region are higher-paying areas, on average, than interior sections, though these gains may be cancelled out by the cost of living.