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IT salaries still increasing

Apr 10, 20032 mins
Data CenterSalaries

* META Group's 2003 IT Staffing and Compensation Guide

Although IT budgets may be flat or declining this year, the good news for techies is that salaries continue to rise, according to a salary report IT analysis firm META Group released last week.

The 2003 IT Staffing and Compensation Guide shows that 61% of IT managers said IT salaries consume between 25% and 50% of their budgets. Last year, only 40% of IT managers chose this same range. These results show that despite the economy, IT salaries have staying power amidst flat or decreased budgets for 2003.

“There is little question that IT budgets will continue to decline slightly or remain flat this year,” says Maria Schafer, program director of META’s human capital management practice and author of its IT Staffing and Compensation Guide. “What is most interesting is the fact that, despite this, we expect IT compensation to actually rise, in some cases at the expense of non-IT employees.”

This year, 26% of all respondents predicted an increase in the IT compensation budget, as compared to 22% in 2002. The average raise is 5% for base salaries, though a few IT pros with hot skills continue to see increases of 8% to 10%, depending on the skill.

However, the IT raises generally come at the expense of other nontechnical employees throughout corporations. META says the number of companies paying IT workers more than their nontechnical counterparts has increased to 75% of respondents, up from 67% last year. That’s no far from the high of 2000, in which 80% of companies admitted to paying their technical staffs higher salaries.

These results show that companies are still concerned with retaining IT pros. More than half of respondents still offer IT employees an annual year-end bonus, and a surprising 44% are offering sign-on bonuses to attract workers.

For more information about META Group’s 2003 IT Staffing and Compensation Guide, go to