Salaries for U.S. IT professionals are expected to accelerate once again in 2011, after coming to a near halt the past two years. Reports from numerous organizations – including Robert Half Associates (an IT placement firm) and Datamation (news and analysis site for IT managers) – suggest, on average, they’ll increase as much as 2.5 to 4.0 percent compared to 2010.
Of course, those numbers are a far cry from the growth rates experienced in the first half of the decade; but the positive direction suggests the IT industry may finally be moving out of the stubborn economic recession.
Location, Location, Location
Not surprisingly, IT professionals working on the east and west coasts are expected to see the greatest increases. IT salaries in major cities, like New York, Boston, Washington D.C, San Francisco and the Silicon Valley area, have traditionally been 20 to 40 percent higher than the national norm.
These same areas can expect the biggest wage increases this year. Meanwhile, increases for IT professionals working in the Midwest, Mountain West and the south are likely to be more modest.
All Together Now
If predictions are right, the pay bump won’t be isolated to a few types of jobs. All positions should expect some degree of average increase over 2010’s pay range. Here are a few to expect:
• Chief Technology Officer (CTO): Approx 4.3 percent higher ($116,500-$181,750)
• IT Manager: Approx 2.5 percent higher ($85,750-$124,250)
• Systems Administrator: Approx 3.5 percent ($53,250-$83,000)
• Database Manager: Approx 3.8 percent ($92,500-$128,000)
Make sure to read about the Top 6 IT Certifications To Go After In 2011
Information Security Professionals and Administrators will likely realize some of the biggest increases this year; averaging close to 4 percent. This means, as one example, the 2011 average salary range for a Security Administrator will be between $81,500 and $112,500 (compared to $78,250 to $108,250 in 2010).
Those just entering the IT industry will be happy to know they aren’t being left out. Entry level positions should see a 4 percent increase over 2010, while people with high-demand technology skills (such as Web Application Developers, Information Security and Enterprise Resource Planning) will command even more.
One example is an entry level Web Designer. He or she can expect his or her starting pay to be 5.5 percent higher (around $50,750) than what it would have been last year. And the 2011 base compensation for an ERP Developer should range around $79,250 (a 5.2 percent increase). Of note, some of the other areas that will see substantial starting pay increases include Business Intelligence, Data Mining, Data Modeling and IT Auditing functions.
This year’s salary forecasts hold particularly good news for those who have or are pursuing IT Certification Courses to bolster their academic credentials and work experience. Individuals with Microsoft SQL Server qualifications, for example, will command salaries averaging 10 percent higher than the norm. And those with Oracle Database skills will net 9 percent premiums.
Similarly, those with Cisco Network Administration skills can expect to garner a 9 percent more; Linux Administration skills can fetch an 8 percent more; and similar increases will be seen for those certified in MCSE, C++, .NET, Java and PHP.
If you’d like to discuss the career path you’d like to pursue in 2011 – and the certifications that will help you along the way – you are invited to contact QuickCert’s Career Advisors for a no obligation consultation at (888) 840-2378.
*Read more useful articles, from our Jan 2011 newsletter, by visiting HERE.
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