In our 2010 IT salary survey, all signs point to increased salaries for most levels of IT managers and above in most industries and companies, large and small. The numbers were higher than 2009 and also pointed to a better 2011 for most involved in the profession.
However, our IT salary survey numbers may overlook one area that Dries says should be taken into consideration: “My … interpretation of the higher IT salaries is that it has less to do with the rising economy and more to do with a leaner staff being paid more to stay and do more with less,” he said in an email.
He’s right in the sense that IT managers, directors and executives have been learning to do more with less for several years now. And certainly the total numbers of IT personnel have dwindled, so we should consider the number of jobs lost to the increased efficiencies that IT is building into its systems, as well as lost to outsourcing outright.
“These are the type of actions businesses are taking and evidenced by industry information. Less can be said of the evidence for a ‘recovering economy,’” he wrote.
And despite the “recovering economy,” unemployment is still high, and in fact has increased several percentage points since the 2008 meltdown officially ended in June 2009.]]>
These days, an XP migration to Windows 7 feels inevitable. Vista just didn’t cut it, but Windows 7 is promising to take away the things that aggravated you about Vista, and has features that make your life easier. With Windows 7, you get improved management, security and reliability features: AppLocker, BitLocker, BranchCache and an improved user interface, just to name a few features.
You also get tools that Microsoft has developed to address some of the application compatibility problems, tools like Shims that target specific compatibility problems with applications when moving from XP to Windows 7.
Gartner estimates that it will take 12 to 18 months to plan your migration: gathering information about applications and hardware, testing and remediation and piloting, while some software vendors will stop supporting Windows XP in 2012.
Between the potential lack of support for XP on the part of some software and hardware vendors by 2012 and the end of extended XP support in 2014, Gartner analyst Stephen Kleynhans said time is running out. “It’s like we are test crash dummies heading for a wall,” he said during a recent webcast on migrating to Windows 7.
But I’d like to hear from you about your XP migration plans. Does the 2014 end to extended support make a difference to your plans, and how long do you think your XP migration will take?
This is a $10,000-plus drop from the average IT salaries of the 952 senior, mid-level and IT manager professionals we polled in 2009 (when the average was $132,203). But this is not an apples-to-apples comparison as, year over year, the respondents to the survey are not the same individuals, and the number of respondents within each IT job category also changes.
Disclaimer aside, the 921 respondents to our most recent survey are making less money than the respondents to our survey in 2009 but, on a brighter note, this year’s group of respondents did see salary increases.
When asked about their IT salaries in 2010 compared to 2009, mid-level IT directors said they saw the biggest bump, a 4.3% increase from an average salary of $116,976 in 2009 to $121,979 in 2010. Senior IT executives saw an average increase of 1.7% ($145,899 in 2009, versus $148,380 in 2010). IT managers’ raises were miniscule in comparison, only .3% ($94,744 in 2009 and $95,032 in 2010).
So it would seem that mid-level IT management is not a bad place to be. But senior-level IT executives are expecting the biggest pay raise as we move into 2011 — a 5.3% increase.
Mid-level IT executives, meanwhile, predict a 4.5% pay raise in 2011, and IT managers a 4.1% increase.
Broken out by industry, senior IT executives’ IT salaries in the financial services sector increased by 15.2% in 2010 to $152,437 compared to 2009, and these executives expect a 4.4% pay hike in 2011. On the other end of the spectrum, IT salaries for senior IT executives in health care saw their pay drop by 7.3% to an average $142,686 in 2010.
The government sector was not a good place to be as far as IT salaries for mid-level IT managers. Compared to 2009, their salaries dropped by 7.3% in 2010 to $109,278.
Mood by industry
Despite seeing the biggest drops in salaries, IT professionals in health care and government sectors are not the most pessimistic. Granted, when you start to break the numbers down by industry, the stats become a bit more anecdotal due to their smaller sample sizes in comparison to overall respondents. Of the 100 IT professionals in the health care sector asked about the mood in their organization, 38% were pessimistic, 30% optimistic and 32% neutral. Of the 88 government sector respondents, 42% were pessimistic, 32% optimistic and 26% neutral.
The 22 IT folks in the entertainment sector that answered our question about the mood in their organization were the most pessimistic: 64%.
But overall, 72% of senior IT executives, 65% of mid-level IT directors and 61% of IT managers rate the mood at their organizations as neutral or optimistic as SearchCIO-Midmarket.com Senior News Writer Linda Tucci points out in her story on how IT salaries vary by industry.
Another optimistic sign? IT budgets are expected to grow by about 2.8% this year, according to 2,300 respondents from around the world (excluding China) to TechTarget’s 2011 IT Priorities Survey.
Anecdotally, IT professionals I’ve been talking to lately are on the hunt to hire: One data center manager is looking for several virtualization experts (a hot commodity) and a small consulting firm just hired a new expert.
The conversations I’ve had during the year also gradually turned from a lead focus on cost cutting to prioritizing projects that have been put off. This doesn’t necessarily mean that controlling costs isn’t still paramount, but it is yet another sign that the outlook for 2011 is looking a little rosier.
What’s your outlook? Email me at Christina Torode, News Director.]]>
And even though “cloud” has been part of everyday IT lingo for three or four years, there is still much we don’t know about exactly what a cloud is or what defines a cloud service or application, not to mention private clouds. SearchCIO.com Features Writer Laura Smith this week discusses how private clouds are more than just virtualized environments. Management is just as key an ingredient, and CIOs are starting to adjust their focus.
In reality, we are a long way from getting a grip on not just how to define data center transformation, but what the end-game really is. But a TechTarget colleague recently put a certain spin on it that made a lot of sense. There’s nothing evolutionary about cloud computing, he said. It’s already here, since much of the technology has been around for awhile.
What’s revolutionary about it is that cloud is changing the delivery mechanism for applications, relocating the computing power and management (people) power outward and making executives rethink everything about how they use technology to run their businesses. CIOs must look to new ways to port, build, buy or outsource them; re-learn how to evaluate in-house application portfolios; and understand how to maximize value and reduce redundancies.
And this adjustment needs to happen quickly, because Microsoft is betting on the cloud as much as it has on anything since it first heard of the Internet.]]>
The voters are always asked to justify their votes: Do they go by stats, by whether or not a player used steroids, or by longevity? Some use the “black ink” test, which judges a player by how often he led the league in a certain statistical category, noted by bold type in the statistical record. Others use the “eyeball test,” a more qualitative judgment for those players whose stats don’t quite measure up.
For my money, stats are important, but the eyeball test, whether it’s voting for the Hall of Fame or hiring the right person for a job, is a better measure of a person’s worth, because overall value is not always the sum of someone’s stats or stops along a career path.
For technology executives looking for a job in 2011, the qualitative and the quantitative are equally important, according to SearchCIO.com Senior News Writer Linda Tucci’s “Writing a CIO resume” story this week.
Chris Patrick, global CIO practice leader in the Dallas office of executive recruiter Egon Zehnder International AG, advises clients that it’s not simply about what they did, but about how they did it. “Companies balance the quantitative with the qualitative, and sometimes the qualitative can be more important. How much carnage did you leave behind, or did you actually build a strong collaborative environment where people felt they were participating?” he said. Being able to build a team, to work across a matrix organization and to drive change when one doesn’t necessarily “own or control all the levers” — those are critical attributes for a CIO, he added.
How you communicate the idea that you excelled in an environment where ideas, culture and budgets were stacked against you is a tricky thing. Your job “stats” (accomplishments) in your resumé will likely get you past a first screening. But once you make it past that stage, you can throw the resumé away, because you need to sell yourself as being more than a collection of accomplishments.]]>