IT Salary Report Brings a Couple of Small Surprises


I just received my complimentary copy of the 2009 U.S. IT Salary Report released by InformationWeek.


I enjoy reading these kinds of reports; they remind me of the magazines you find at the supermarkets while you are waiting in the checkout line. They are rather rag-tag with little scientific foundation. However, they do serve a purpose -- they certainly capture the sentiment of the respondents, good or bad, at the time of the survey.


I guess the reason that I read these surveys is because I am always surprised. If you would have asked me last week if I thought anybody in IT would see a raise this year, I would have said definitely not. According to the survey, only four out of 19 job functions did not see an increase in total compensation this year. These four functions saw a decrease in total compensation from last year: Enterprise Application Integration, ERP, Web Infrastructure and Web Design/Development.


In the "what matters most" category (staff), Base pay, Benefits, Job stability, Challenge of job/responsibility, and Flexible work schedule topped the list. The geographic areas that saw the most salary increases were: Washington D.C./Baltimore, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Chicago, San Francisco/Oakland, and the Dallas/Fort Worth metro areas.


The one area that really shocked me was the job security question. In 2007, 42 percent of respondents felt strongly secure. In 2008, that went up to 43 percent, then down again in 2009 to 32 percent. In 2007, 45 percent of respondents felt somewhat secure. In 2008, that went up to 46 percent, and up again in 2009 to 53 percent. The respondents that felt insecure stayed roughly the same for all three years, in the 11-15 percent range.


As I said, salary surveys do serve a purpose, but it's mostly entertainment. Do you agree with the survey? Did you see an increase in compensation this year?