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The Surprising State of IT Salaries: IT Expert Explains the Phenomenon

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If you’re interested in pursuing a job in technology and you haven’t downloaded a copy of the 2015 IT Salary Guide from Robert Half Technology yet, what are you waiting for?

We’re confident you’re going to like what you see. The annual report found IT salaries are increasing across the board—from PC technicians all the way up to chief information officers (CIOs). In fact, technology job earnings are up an average of 5.7 percent year-over-year!*

Now that we have your attention, you’re probably wondering why this is happening. More importantly, you want to know how you can get in on these enticing IT salaries! We talked with John Reed, executive director of Robert Half Technology (RHT) to weigh in on the topic.

Why are IT salaries increasing?

It’s safe to say that most industries aren’t experiencing the same salary increase. So what’s the deal with information technology? It all boils down to supply and demand, according to Reed.

FACT: Technology job earnings are up an average of 5.7% year-over-year.

“There is simply a shortage of talent, which means the businesses with the greatest needs are more than willing to make the investment,” Reed says. With companies competing for qualified IT pros, he’s noticing salary proposals far above standard market rates and enticing benefits being offered to help land top tech talent.

Another RHT report found that 87 percent of U.S. CIOs said they’re planning to hire, expand or fill vacant IT positions this year. Sixty-seven percent of the CIOs featured in the report admitted that finding qualified candidates is challenging. It’s clear this shortage of talent is the biggest culprit behind the increase in IT salaries.

What does the future hold for IT salaries?

“It seems employers will do whatever it takes to recruit and retain top talent,” Reed says. Finding qualified candidates is only half of the battle—the other trick is keeping them on staff. The IT industry is cutthroat when it comes to poaching top performers, so companies must focus on keeping their tech pros happy.

Reed predicts the growing importance of technology within organizations won’t slow up any time soon. Companies will continue to seek skilled professionals to help implement and maintain these high-tech initiatives. While the skills and abilities driving hiring may evolve over time, IT pros will likely remain a hot commodity in the workforce.

What can YOU do to capitalize on the opportunity?

“It’s a great time to be in technology since the options are plentiful,” Reed says. He encourages anyone with a desire to constantly learn and grow to consider a career in IT. Not only will you be at the cutting edge of your industry, but you can also take advantage of the enticing earning potential.

You heard how CIOs are struggling to find qualified IT candidates, but what does it take to meet that criteria? It seems one of the biggest factors to impress employers is acquiring a formal education.

"It's a great time to be in technology since the options are plentiful."

We used real-time job analysis software to identify more than 1.3 million IT jobs advertised over the past year. Our analysis revealed 85 percent of employers are seeking candidates with a bachelor’s degree or higher.**

But a degree in technology is just the beginning. There are dozens of IT certifications that allow you to add specialized skills to your arsenal and help set you apart from the crowd. Reed says the positions that are currently hardest to fill are those dealing with mobile development, big data and security. Obtaining certification in any of these in-demand areas can help you become one of the coveted IT professionals employers are seeking.

What are you waiting for?

If there’s one thing you should walk away with, it’s this final word from Reed: “Employers in most industries will pay top dollar for in-demand tech talent!”

So if you’ve ever considered working in the fast-paced world of technology, there’s no better time than now! Now that you’re now aware of the promising state of IT salaries, learn about some of the most in-demand tech career opportunities.

*Robert Half Technology 2015 Salary Guide
** (analysis of 1,311,682 information technology job postings, May 1, 2014 – Apr. 30, 2015)

Callie Malvik

Callie is the Content Manager at Collegis Education, overseeing blog content on behalf of Rasmussen College. She is passionate about creating quality resources that empower others to improve their lives through education.

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