Tech pros see largest pay spike in over a decade

By Brittany Ballenstedt

February 1, 2013

Technology professionals in 2012 won the largest pay increases they’ve seen in more than a decade, earning a more than a 5 percent average increase, according to a new report.

The 2012-2013 Salary Survey by technology jobs website found that tech professionals earned a greater than 5 percent average increase in pay last year, raising average salaries to $84,619, up from $81,327 in 2011.

The survey of more than 15,000 technology professionals in the U.S. found that efforts such as companywide raises and internal promotions (36 percent) and job changes (19 percent) were the primary reason for the increases in technology salaries.

More specifically, salaries for entry-level professionals increased for the first time in three years, rising 8 percent to $46,315 last year. More seasoned professionals also saw a sizeable increase, with average salaries for those with at least 15 years of experience topping six-figures for the first time, growing 4 percent to $103,012 in 2012, Dice found.

Still, bonuses for technology professionals were down slightly in 2012, decreasing to $8,636 from $8,769 in 2011. At the same time, slightly more tech professionals received a payout in 2012 – 33 percent vs. 32 percent in 2011, the survey found.

“In the early stages of the recovery, companies were staying flexible by using performance pay to reward their top performers,” said Scott Melland, chairman, president and CEO of Dice Holdings Inc. “Now, companies are writing the checks that will stick. With a 3.8 percent tech unemployment rate, no one wants to lose talent.”

In addition, the survey found that most tech professionals (64 percent) are confident they could find a favorable new position in 2013. Respondents also noted that employers are increasing efforts to motivate staff with more interesting and challenging assignments, increased compensation and the ability to telecommute.

Technology skills commanding the highest salaries were all part of the big three – mobile, cloud and data. Salaries for big data professionals – particularly those who regularly use Hadoop, NoSQL and Mongo DB – are all at six figures. Average salaries for tech professionals in cloud and virtualizations are just under $90,000, while mobile salaries are around $80,000, Dice found. 

By Brittany Ballenstedt

February 1, 2013