Software Development

Sanity check: State of the IT profession 2009

In light of the release of our 2009 IT Skills and Salary Report, I have assembled a set of observations about the current state of the IT profession. Here are the areas of strength and the most significant challenges.

In light of the release of our 2009 IT Skills and Salary Report, I have assembled a set of observations about the current state of the IT profession. Here are the areas of strength and the most significant challenges.

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We the people of the IT profession, in order to form a more perfect union ... oh sorry, wrong speech. Actually this isn't a speech at all, but a written account. It might surprise you to hear that the U.S. State of the Union Address -- the format that inspired today's column -- was primarily a written account until 1913. And even since then there have been several presidents that chose to do the address as a written document rather than a speech, most recently Jimmy Carter in 1981.

So it's in that spirit that I've put together a series of observations on the "State of the IT profession" in 2009. This is based primarily on TechRepublic's newly released 2009 IT Skills and Salary Report, plus the Gartner 2009 CIO Survey and Veritude's 2009 IT Hiring Outlook. Of course, all of these observations are set against the backdrop of a deepening global recession.

Areas of strength

  • From our 2008 salary report to our 2009 report, the average base salary for IT pros increased 10% from $73,900 to $81,600 (see full comparison below). IT remains a very well-paid profession.
  • In our 2009 report, 78% of IT workers said they were Satisfied, Very Satisfied, or Extremely Satisfied with their jobs. IT remains a rewarding career path.
  • While the number of respondents reporting raises and bonuses dropped in this year's salary report, the amounts of those raises and bonuses increased in both cases. While this is partially due to a larger number of senior IT leaders in the survey, it also goes to show that many companies are likely providing additional compensation to their top performers in order to keep happy during these trying times that often mean long hours and fewer resources.
  • For the fifth straight year, "improving business processes" was the number one priority of respondents in the Gartner CIO survey. IT departments are still focused on driving efficiency and productivity gains.
  • In the Gartner survey, only 21% of CIOs reported a cut in 2009 IT budgets, while 46% reported a slight increase and 23% reported no change. Over two-thirds of IT departments have the same or slightly higher funding than last year.
  • Despite the fact that many organizations are laying off workers -- and IT is not immune to those job cuts -- there are still lucrative IT specialties that are in strong demand this year, according to Veritude. Their 2009 survey cited Business Intelligence, Enterprise Solutions (SAP, PeopleSoft), and C Programmers (C, C++, C#) as examples of three hot IT specialties.
  • As businesses tighten their belts, they are looking to IT to streamline, automate, and find new efficiencies. In some cases, this is saving jobs in IT by helping reduce the number of needed positions in other departments.

Challenges

  • In Veritude's survey, 38% of IT departments plan to decrease their staff in 2009, compared to only 4% in 2008 (see further details in the chart below).
  • In the TechRepublic salary survey, the number of respondents who reported receiving raises decreased from 80% in 2008 to 70% in 2009
  • Meanwhile, the number of respondents who reported receiving a bonus decreased from 49% in 2008 to 43% in 2009.
  • In an effort to conserve costs, many companies will delay upgrade cycles and hold on to older equipment for longer than usual. This results in greater strain on IT operations to keep the equipment running and it increases the risk of unplanned downtime due to equipment failure.
  • Nearly all expensive, long-term IT projects are being put on hold. In most organizations, the only IT projects that are getting approved are the ones that show clear and immediate ROI.

Bottom line

Despite the global economic convulsions, the state of the IT profession remains strong (come on, you knew I was going to say that). The current recession is giving IT an opportunity to shine by driving efficiency and automation. IT salaries and compensation are holding up and there are still several specialties in high demand, even though 38% of all IT departments are planning to reduce their staff in 2009.

We should expect about half of IT departments to shrink in 2009 and it will likely be a few years before they return to their original size. A lot of IT professionals will lose their jobs and many of them may need to re-train to update their skills. Web-based applications, virtualization, and utility computing, for example, will all offer significant opportunities for IT growth in the future.

About

Jason Hiner is the Global Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Global Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He is an award-winning journalist who writes about the people, products, and ideas that are revolutionizing the ways we live and work in the 21st century.

66 comments
oschmid14
oschmid14

The current recession is giving IT an opportunity to shine by driving efficiency and automation. I heard that during every recession in the last 18 years. My questions is how much can you improve efficiencies and automation. For many organizations it means, staying with the old, often somewhat obsolete or outdated, technology and "reinventing the wheel" over and over again. I do not see a lot of companies investing in new technologies that actually could help to become more productive and more efficient. Reason: It would mean investing money in new technology and in training and/or hiring new people. Money that nobody wants to spend in times like this. No most organizations rather wait until the recession is over and than start eventually investing. And then everything needs to be done now or even better yesterday - like the Queens song: "I want it all and I want it now."

credmore
credmore

I have worked in the middle of the software industry for decades and I don't recognize the profile of "IT employees" here at all. They must have interviewed people who are only on the periphery of the business. There are an awful lot of folk who call themselves "IT workers" who really are HR or admin or sales or marketing or ... journalists?

Steve Romero
Steve Romero

There is a lot of interesting information here, but the one item I found most compelling is likely to get lost in all of this data: "For the fifth straight year, ?improving business processes? was the number one priority of respondents in the Gartner CIO survey. IT departments are still focused on driving efficiency and productivity gains." The opportunity is enormous. An IT organization that garners a reputation for "improving business processes" will be cherished by their enterprise. This is the fundamental purpose of technology and the resulting strategic and competitive advantages it creates will result in highly compensated and rewarded IT personnel. Steve Romero, IT Governance Evangelist http://community.ca.com/blogs/theitgovernanceevangelist/

kino.mondesir
kino.mondesir

I know I posted but this topic gets me so burned up. Why is it for IT that you include, executives, CIOs, management. Technically these are separate job duties. I will assist my fellow IT people on the definition of a profession: an occupation, vocation or high-status career, usually involving prolonged academic training, formal qualifications and membership of a professional or regulatory body. Unfortunately IT does not technical count as a profession which is why their is so much playing around with the numbers. I love when people get on here about loving their jobs. This isn't about that. Love cannot pay your bills. Doing a good job isn't enough. Truth is IT is a labor of love, like teaching. Those that possess the skills to change their profession do so, adapt of die. Stay focused people. The complaint is how the statistics are formed. A separation of job duties is important. For example, when you look at engineering you only look at the engineering role, you do not include, upper management, senior leadership, project management (which is a separate discipline). The numbers are wrong, first off. Second it also creates the false impression that if you work hard you will make those numbers. The sad truth are their are many good technicians that can find work. People whose skills are slowly fading away because they do not get to use them. What they should do is also look at the age of those earning top dollar. They may have gotten in when IT was good. Also they hold the positions that younger workers would get. Their aren't that many IT positions open. Their are too many people flooding the system. Unless we see some serious changes or develop a regulating body that has some serious bite. Like CPA are well known to everybody outside of accounting. But most people don't know what CISSP. We need an organization that will separate the unqualified from the qualified. Again until that happens IT will never get the respect it so richly deserves.

Kam Guerra
Kam Guerra

The Base Salary from the Participant Profile is about $30K higher than reality. I haven't seen any company give out bonuses to IT folks since the dot.com days. The Salary Range of Respondents is purely made up. $100K? $120K? Really? Where? Show me a company paying that and can actually prove it. Splendid report - except for the accuracy of the inflated salary information.

vicki_711
vicki_711

I am wondering what "IT Professional" means to a number of respondents. The figures seem low for what our company pays and yes, we did receive a bonus for 2008. And I switched jobs due to a layoff in Feb, 2008 and have found that new hires are getting paid more than I am. But I do have over 20 years experience and an advanced degree - perhaps we should look at years experience vs. pay to clearly define (I sure hope no one straight out of school is earning what I am).

Nori Sarel
Nori Sarel

Like I said in previous comments I just graduated with a 4-yr degree (in MIS) and I make making a bit over half of the numbers here, which for a new hire is probably about right, a bit on the low side though. If I had 10 years of experience and/or a masters I would expect to be making 80K. I could understand people thinking these numbers are high if they are help desk people without college degrees. But System and Network admins (with a degree) should be making these numbers after around 10 years experience (IMHO).

Nori Sarel
Nori Sarel

But I don't make that much. Then again I'm still what employers consider inexperienced.

jeff.caton
jeff.caton

As a Sr IT Project Manager my base salary was just under $100k with a $2k bonus last year. For 2009 I'm taking a 5% cut and no bonus this year. To survive and stay employed you need to show your boss you are making a difference for the business (and of course make a positive difference too). My project portfolio for 2008 included a FileNet upgrade, new data center consolidation, new office build out, and an ERP upgrade. For 2009 my project portfolio includes additional ERP upgrades, Office 2007 rollout, SharePoint upgrade, and ITIL practices in the IT department. For 2009 we've hired a local consultant to help with the Access 2007 migration and added a couple fo DBA's and Developers to the staff. So, salaries are down, work is up, and outside help is local vs oversea's.... Thank God for the work! Cheers to a better future for all!

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

How many of us plankton and diatoms get involved in budget and lay off decisions, until we get the f*** off letter? I can understand why we aren't in the survey of course, I mean who cares what we think anyway?

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

1. The coasts tend to skew the numbers higher, especially workers in New York area and San Francisco Bay area because the cost of living is so high there. 2. People tend to round upward when you ask them how much they make in surveys like this.

artLinkletter
artLinkletter

I'd like to know the make-up of these numbers, how many of these positions are within the US, and of those, how many are filled with Foreign Nationals (H1B, L1, etc.)? I know in my circumstance, we haven't hired any young or mature US citizens. All new positions have been H1B's, and many positions which were filled with US citizens have been replaced with H1B workers (and that would be 34% of all our IT positions, and the percentage is growing).

phportelance
phportelance

I believe the IT profession needs to do more to standardize what job requirements should be. I have found that the same two positions can have totally different job requirements and a different pay structure. I am not always sure what is required for me to get to the next level. Having more structure does not mean that this has to be followed to the letter, it just gives IT professionals and employers guidelines and ways to compare skills. I have noticed a trend towards have and have nots in the IT profession and it is not easy to change a have not status even if you have the skills to move up. If you look at other professions, the pay structure and qualifications are similar, for example, a Doctor. In IT there are alot of low paying positions requiring the same skill set as someone being paid more. When I compare this to a Doctor, I mean there will be minimum conditions they can expect in terms of salary and qualifications and after that it is up to them if they want to do better.

twobucksjr
twobucksjr

The IT profession is definitely in good health. But, I have seen that the education (from high school, college) is decreasing the incentive for aspiring technical engineers.

Craig_B
Craig_B

My number one goal in getting is a job is doing something that I will enjoy, 2nd or 3rd down the list is how much I will make. My theory is that if you enjoy it, you will feel better about it and do a better job which will lead to increases. I still enjoy IT work, because it is interesting, challenging, I get to help others and learn new things.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

To twist a saying, "I love my work, it's the job that sucks." I do end-user support (currently maintaining point-of-sale systems and everything else electronic in grocery stores) and love it. It's different every day, it's always a challenge, and it's never boring. Am I making the big bucks? No, not even with a military retirement check. But I make enough to pay my bills and buy a few extras. Am I happy? As a puppy with a new sock!

c.walters
c.walters

What a wonderfull reply! I've 20 year+ experience and always have had the same attitude. I started with a $1.000 a month Cobol programming job. After night school I earned a college degree. I changed jobs and things were getting much better. As the years passed by I really enjoyed my work as a systems-analist programmer, head of the development department, project manager and now I'm an senior IT Auditor. I now am a certified CISA and CISM. And yes I make the salary they report in the survey and could earn even more if I was working in the US. But I love my life in the Caribean so I settle for less. Carpe diem!

Photogenic Memory
Photogenic Memory

As a "general" support person; I don't make anywhere near as much. But, I don't have any of those high profile skills. As things come full circle and companies start using local resources for assistance instead of offshoring jobs; will salaries improve for general support techs?

ryan.yeager
ryan.yeager

I am general support as well, staffing a helpdesk. I find that it is quite rewarding and even though I am pursuing numerous certifications in the field, I am making well above a normal helpdesk position.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

The jack-of-all-trades IT pro will always be able to find work, but it will mostly be in small and medium businesses and so the pay will never be great - although the work can be very rewarding. If you want to keep doing that AND you want to make more money at it, then you need to become a consultant, start your own business, and serve as an IT go-to-guy for a variety of small businesses.

reisen55
reisen55

Very rewarding but first 2 years are hell. I had to return to corporate after a 2008 I do not want to relive and am working in a small datacenter (at least) where the skill and knowledge is invaluable. I consider this job a temporary exit off the financial freeway and, besides, having a job these days is quite something. DO BOTH if you can and build your business in your spare time - work like hell to do it to.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

it's true that the first two years are brutal whenever you're starting a small business.

reisen55
reisen55

I would choose a different career given all that has happened to destroy IT through outsourcing jobs to Bangalore. Pure and simple. Yes there is money here, but "cheaper,faster,better" and "increase shareholder value" by cutting IT staffers JUST to hire H1-B visa types or hire Bangalore is a scam, a snake oil salesman job and American management a sucker for it. Stinks.

akshay.pawar123
akshay.pawar123

Scam? Snake oil salesman job? Its true that the software service in these countries are cheaper.. but if an organization can get the same quality of talent at a lower cost, why should it refrain from doing so. The software market in the outsourced countries (I can atleast say this about India) has matured a lot & today, there are hardly a handful of big IT companies who dont hire resources from here. When we say its a global market out there, how can we oppose outsourcing??

reisen55
reisen55

Akshay, your arguments are precise and leave some room for discussion which goes to your credit. Yes, some IT support overseas is very good, but the BAD is horrible and the sad fact is that American management does not care to distinguish that factor. They only see cheap salaries and costs and that's it. Period. Your nation is being cruelly used and your people exploited. When you have quality support = great, but secondly not everything can be outsourced. Programming is the most prevalent activity because it is non-touch and do work in an on-site sense (aka take drive backup, server support, etc) which are best handled with local support. I oppose it as an American worker who has seen too many qualified personnel dismissed JUST BECAUSE of salary and benefit expense and NO OTHER REASON AT ALL. NONE. I am sure you would feel the same if your countrymen and women were dismissed just because of money and nothing else.

csobott
csobott

at the top of my game I made 54K as a IMAC tech for Bear Stearns. That was as high as it ever got.

mfang329
mfang329

Yes, this is so true that all businessman wants to cut expenses and reduce cost by finding cheaper IT resource oversea. Everyone in his/her right mind would do that, just imagine you go to shop for pc monitor, and you notice the same brand cost $$ less online than walk-in store, which one would you get? IT will continue to outsource until it becomes a commodities just like Nike shoes being manufacture oversea! It is inevitable to occur in the near future just don't known when. The only way we can really control it is to continue to innovate and keep all the innovation in the state!

reisen55
reisen55

Your analogy of the computer monitor is exactly the one American management uses to outsource experienced technical support: cheaper is better. Oh, really? Have you dealt with support from a third world country wherein a hundred well trained and eager technicians are reading answers to you from a script??? Quality of work is a variable that is not addressed and you would do well to consider that too. Oh, a cheap monitor is usually a poor one these days. There is a direct relationship between cheap (per se) and "well priced" wherein you get a quality product at a decent value. Not a cheap value but a good one.

Imprecator
Imprecator

This review seems to be from another planet, stop asking CIOs ask the people who have to do the actual work

LocoLobo
LocoLobo

I don't know any IT people who make that much around here.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

We surveyed the whole spectrum of IT workers. Otherwise we would have never been able to get 14,000 respondents. There aren't that many CIOs in the world.

Imprecator
Imprecator

IT a rewarding experience? It's a dirty, ugly and usually underpaid job. I've being doing this for more than 30 years, PCs, Networks, RDBMS, IT Security, Internet Infrastructure, More versions of Unix than I care to remember, AND Windows. The reason I still do it is because it's what I am good at it. Yesterday, while trying to solve a weird VMM problem at one of my AIX boxes, I had to to stop, research and then proceed rebuild a Windows 2003 (and yes I must thank Tech Republic for the info I got from their site) Domain Controller because of a hard disk failure, The shop I work at hasn't bought a single spare in the 8 months I have been there, the only reason we had a spare disk, was because my boss had one buried in his desk. And all shops I have seen are pretty much the same. In this business, CIOs are spineless cowards that let their shops go under because the "business" doesn't want to pay for it and then let the "business" penalize the employees for it. They let glassy eyed "IT Architects" design intricate, unmanageable solutions to please some marketing idiot's pet peeves, hire herds and herds of monkeys to crank out fragile, unmanageable code, and then dump it all on the production people's laps and blame them when the things blows up. Refuse to properly maintain infrastructure to keep Operating Expenses down, Force manual/unreliable procedures to meet project deadlines, put the same people to do projects AND handle operations at the same time. And then demand to know why things are unreliable. Change priorities every time some marketing minion decides he's going to change the world. And when they feel "analytical", demand and then royally ignore performance/reliability statistics regularly. IT Operations is such a lousy business that nobody with an IQ of more than 45 wants to do it, therefore the people who work at IT operations usually are at the bottom of the heap (except helldesk of course), giving ammunition to the CIOs who continuously look for ways to cut as many resources as possible from operations because it's OPEX and it doesn't look good for the CFO, who is the only person "The Business" listens to (when things are good, at their worst they listen to marketing) And finally when surveys come (from Inhuman Resources, external consultants, whatever) they demand to their staff to lie and say everything is peachy. Yeah I know, I'm a special case, I'll shut up now

jrnesbit
jrnesbit

Just who are the 80k + people other than the CIO's themselves? I've taught on several Community Colleges with fair sized networks. Their IT departments range from several people to dozens. Most are shamefully underpaid and overworked.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

The pay on the coasts skew the average. An IT manager or network administrator making 40-50K in a smaller market might have a higher standard of living and more disposable income than someone doing a similar job making 70K in New York City or Seattle or the SF Bay Area. Some of the really big companies also skew the averages a bit, because they pay more and demand more specialized skills.

williaa6
williaa6

As most of the contributors to these discussion appear to work with distributed systems, I'll pose the following possibility. Here in Oz, a person with specialised mainframe skills earns a significant premium over a person doing the same role on distributed systems. Why? I don't know really, but maybe because we're starting to die off and no-one is coming through to replace us. And the mainframe isn't going anywhere for quite some time to come.

Nori Sarel
Nori Sarel

I've only got a couple years experience (just finished college, but have been in the field a bit) and I make more than that, and thats in Wisconsin.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

Asa generalist, you're looking at 40-ish (or less) outside of the hottest metros (mostly NY, SF, DC, Boston, or Seattle). Now, I know several IT folks in Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan that are generalists in SMBs that are making better than 40K. However, as a generalist, you're never going to make a fortune. As for where we got our data ... we got it from all of you, the TechRepublic audience.

rball
rball

I, as well as many I know, make less than $40k in Portland being a one-person admin (with 15 years experience) on a medium-sized mixed-OS network; I have no clue where you're getting your data... with this economy, it's not likely to improve any time soon either. I'm happy to have a job at this point.

sabbirhs
sabbirhs

Hi, Thanks for the statistics. My query was how we will develop the software with less tech people.?? I have no idea.

Geoff
Geoff

I love how 'Global Knowledge' is purely US based with no mention of the rest of the world. I suppose this is what you expect from a country that has a 'world series' without inviting the rest of the world

maxwell edison
maxwell edison

The term, [i]World Series[/i] was coined in about 1903, when a [i]Championship Series[/i] between the American and National Leagues resulted in one newspaper proclaiming the winning team (The Boston Pilgrims - later to be renamed the Red Sox) to be [i]Champions of the World[/i]. (I wonder if they would have used Queen's song if it was around in 1903?) In subsequent contests between the competing leagues, it was nicknamed the [i]World Series[/i]. Thus, a legendary contest was born. It's hard to change something that was started well over a hundred years ago, especially considering the only serious baseball (with a few exceptions) was ONLY being played in the United States. I do know there was a Cuban League in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and you're right, they weren't invited to compete. (But MLB later figured out how to snatch up all the good Cuban players!) And baseball in Canada did, pretty much, follow the same development path as it did in the United States, but until those great Toronto Blue Jay teams of the late 1970s, 80s, and 90s. I've not heard about anything extraordinary in the realm of baseball coming from our friends north of the border. The Canadian teams did, however, become affiliated with Major League teams by having farm teams for player development. And the Toronto Blue Jays DID INDEED appear in the World Series several times - winning it twice, I believe. From the article, [b][i]History of baseball outside the United States[/i][/b] [i]The first formal baseball league outside of the United States and Canada was founded in 1878 in Cuba, which maintains a rich baseball tradition and whose national team has been one of the world's strongest since international play began in the late 1930s. Professional baseball leagues began to form in other countries between the world wars, including the Netherlands (formed in 1922), Australia (1934), Japan (1936), and Puerto Rico (1938). After World War II, professional leagues were founded in many Latin American nations, most prominently Venezuela (1945), Mexico (1945), and the Dominican Republic (1951). In Asia, Korea (1982), Taiwan (1990), and mainland China (2003) all have professional leagues. [/i] [i][b]World Cup Baseball[/i][/b] began in 1938, the winner being the team fielded by the United Kingdom. Cuba won it the next 5 years in a row. The United Stated didn't win the World Cup in Baseball until 1974. However, baseball always has been, and most likely always will be, an American institution, and [i]World Series[/i] has become firmly entrenched as a contest between MLB's American and National Leagues. If I had my choice to attend the next [i]Baseball's World Cup[/i] or the [i]World Series[/i], I'd choose the latter. Look at the bright side. The [i]World Series of Poker[/i] is open to all players from anywhere around the globe - if they pay the $10,000 entry fee, that is.

ted
ted

Global Knowledge is the name of the World Wide IT training company TechRepublic partnered with to perform the US based survey. I for one would be interested in seeing a similar survey performed for Europe, but appriciate the U.S. focus of this report. It is after all a US based site.

rball
rball

I'm a network admin for a 100+ node Unix / Windows network and I don't make even half of what is reported on these supposed average salary surveys so it's messed up even if you are stateside...

Nori Sarel
Nori Sarel

That is interesting, because I just graduated from college with a four year degree and I make a bit more than half of what they are reporting here. So I would venture that you either aren't getting payed enough, or you don't have a degree or you don't have many years of experience. I'm sure that in 10 years I'll be at those figures.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

It comes from TechRepublic members. Keep in mind that there are a lot of factors that go into salary. The three biggest are: geography, company size, and industry. I talk about this in more detail in this week's episode of my video shows, which will publish on Thursday.

kino.mondesir
kino.mondesir

I am unsure where these salaries come from but it might have something to do with the definition of what you would consider an IT professional. For example in the article their were no mention of network admins but programmers. No offense but programming is a difficult profession and deserves higher pay but not explaining where theses statistics are coming from is dangerous and misleading. I am not just one technician who feels these numbers are wrong. I'm sure a good majority of people feel these statistics are wrong. I have my degree and multiple certifications and I struggle to make half of that. IT is a young profession and as such we do not have standardization of job duties and job functions. Which allows for employers to play around with job titles, pay and duties. Also when the quote salaries like this it makes one think that if they work hard get a degree, get some experience and go for certifications they will be able to make this much. They are wrong. I used to believe that now I know better. IT needs to experience a shortage and it will of its qualified talent as you talent can always retrain for new skills. That's what being skilled means. IT is all about adaptation. I consider myself as one of the best. My employers would always say that they wouldn't find someone as qualified as I am. My response was, but you will find someone to fill my position. I do not believe their is a short but playing around with statistics and the definition of "IT professional" will yield some pretty outrageous results.

work
work

Geoff, I sense baseball is a sore subject for you! Why bring it into the argument? Oh well, though I agree with you the World Series does not invite teams from around the world, do keep in mind that ~30% of all major league players are born outside of the US and and ~48% of the minor league players are born outside of the US... I would say that's a pretty high percentage given the fact that baseball doesn't even rank in the top 5 most popular global sports! With that out of the way, let's focus on IT!

bill.suggs
bill.suggs

Instead, let's base it on who funds the UN. Those cocky Americans! I'll bet they thought the whole world was watching the Oscars last night too! Such hubris.

Timbo Zimbabwe
Timbo Zimbabwe

"I love how 'Global Knowledge' is purely US based with no mention of the rest of the world." Could it be because the US sets the standard in technology? This would explain why the US is in the "spotlight" for IT wages and employment trends. At the risk of sounding arrogant, I would say it is....

jrnesbit
jrnesbit

That definately has to be opinion, and not fact....our "pace" has brought us to the brink.

maxwell edison
maxwell edison

What's your criteria for making such a determination, and who is the [i]world leader in technology[/i]?

dreron
dreron

That is exactly the point, and that is also what makes the average for US tricky, is not the as expensive to live in San Francisco as to live in Arkansas, therefore the guy in San Francisco is pushing the average up.

williaa6
williaa6

When I was working in Saudi Arabia, I got friendly with one of the tea boys. He was a little fellow from Bangladesh. Of course he thought I was rich and powerful, because I was a "professional computer expert" and he swept the floor and made cups of tea. But when I asked him about his home life in Bangladesh, I discovered that he was buying houses for all of his family, putting his neices and nephews through school and would go home and buy a shop when he finished in Saudi Arabia. I was being paid 30 or 40 times what he was being paid, and he was going home far better off than I was.

dreron
dreron

That?s why people migrate to the US; with the money you save by, let?s say, bring your lunch to work instead buying it, it will be enough to pay the rent for your family at your country. That?s also why migration wont work for US people.

pam.rickey
pam.rickey

That the US is the world leader in technology is only in the minds of US citizens. We are actually very far behind other parts of the world in many areas of technology. That being said...I do agree that when it comes to salary discussion it would be pointless to make a global comparison. There is no way to compare what someone makes in the US to other parts of the world without taking into account factors like currency rate exchange and cost of living. That would get very complex. Surely there are other sites our global readers could go to for that information.

nick
nick

Couldn't agree more! To compare a Czech IT salary with what is listed here would make most employees feel very bad about their wage. With that said, most often the average IT salary here provides for a reasonably comfortable life. (I don't know why it says I'm from Raleigh, North Carolina. I'm working in Prague, CZ)

retropedia
retropedia

Asia has it even worse, with average IT salaries less than a third of what the US base salaries are. That said, I hope Tech Republic would give bit more coverage on the other regions as well (Asia, Europe, south America, etc) and not just focus on the USA. Just my dos pesos worth...

Gkiss
Gkiss

That comparison would be absolutely wrong. Cost of living in Asia must be way less than 3rd of the US. Apples to Oranges....

Nori Sarel
Nori Sarel

I agree. Yes, they don't talk about the rest of the World, but it is a USA based site so what did you expect?

bob.goldsmith
bob.goldsmith

Is Tech Republic the only IT focused website on the Internet? Surely there must be other websites that focus on other areas of the world? Complaining about a US focused report/site is silly. Don't read it then, look at a different website!