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Dice Reports IT Pay Catching Up with the Market

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As the market for IT pros tightens, companies are boosting paychecks to hang on to their talent.

Tech pros received their biggest pay boost in more than a decade, according to Dice.com survey of 15,049 employed technology professionals. It reports raises averaged 5.3 percent last year, with the average salary growing from $81,327 in 2011 to $85,619.

With tech unemployment down to 3.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012, it’s no wonder companies have decided to pony up. In the survey, 64 percent said they were confident they could find a favorable new position in 2013.

“Employers are recognizing and adjusting to the reality of a tight market,” Scot Melland, chairman, president and CEO of Dice Holdings, is quoted as saying. “The fact is you either pay to recruit or pay to retain and these days, at least for technology teams, companies are doing both.”

Bonuses, however, were down a bit, to $8,636 from $8,769, but more IT pros received them, 33 percent vs. 32 percent.

For the first time in three years, those with two years or less in the field earned their first annual increase (8 percent) to $46,315. And for the first time, average salaries for IT workers with at least 15 years of experience topped six figures, growing 4 percent to $103,012.

Silicon Valley, of course, leads in average salaries ($101,278), but seven markets posted double-digit wage increases:

  • Pittsburgh, up 18 percent to $76,207.
  • San Diego, up 13 percent to $97,328.
  • St. Louis, up 13 percent to $81,245.
  • Phoenix, up 12 percent to $83,607.
  • Cleveland, up 11 percent to $75,773.
  • Orlando, up 10 percent to $81,583.
  • Milwaukee, up 10 percent to $81,670.

St. Louis in particular has been making news as a tech hub lately. In addition to manufacturing and health care employers, a report from CTIA — The Wireless Association and the Application Developers Alliance on the “app economy” points to St. Louis as an “app cluster” location.

The Dice salary survey stands in contrast to that of Janco Associates, which pegged overall IT wage growth at 1.98 percent over the past 12 months and the average IT salary at $79,312.

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