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IT Salaries Increased 5.2% in 2006; Top 10 Skills, Cities, and Industries

A survey of more than 19,000 technology professionals found that average IT salaries in the U.S. increased 5.2% to $73,308 in 2006 from $69,700 in 2005, reports 2006 Annual Salary Survey by Dice. The survey found that starting salaries outpaced the overall national average, with an increase of 13.1% to $42,414 in 2006. 

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Q4 Tech Job Cuts Fall To Record Low; 2006 Cuts Lowest Since 2000: Challenger

U.S. Tech-sector job cuts plummeted 77% in the fourth quarter of 2006 to 11,619, according to the latest survey by Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.  The record low fourth-quarter brought the tech-sector job cut total to 131,181 in 2006, the lowest since the 100,901 job cuts in 2000. 

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IT Manager Jobs Up 44% In 5 Years; Programming & Support Declined 19%

The number of IT managers employed in the United States has jumped 44% since the dot-com collapse of 2001, compared with a 19% decline in the number of programming and support jobs. That translates into 119,000 new IT managers during the same five-year span that programming and support jobs have shrunk by 200,000. Distribution of the 3.48 million IT jobs in the U.S.:
  • Software Engineers - 25%
  • Computer Scientists and Systems Analysts - 22%
  • Programmers - 16%
  • Systems Managers - 11%
  • Others - 26%

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78% of IT workers are satisfied with their compensation

Nearly four out of five (78%) of IT workers are very or somewhat satisfied with their cash and benefits, compared to 72% of all workers. These findings come from Hudson’s Transforming Pay Plans: 2006 Compensation and Benefits Report , which surveyed 10,000 workers across all sectors of the economy, examining employee attitudes about traditional and non-traditional pay and benefit programs - CIO Update.

When asked about non-traditional benefits, IT workers were more interested in job-related training (20%) than the general work force (13%). However, their first choice is a more flexible work schedule, a sentiment shared by the population at large.

US Tech Jobs Making a Comeback - 3.5 Million IT Workers in US

While the offshoring of American jobs has generated considerable concern in recent years, the truth is, back in the states the IT industry is making a steady comeback - JobJournal

Some positive trends:

  • More people than ever are employed in information technology, according to an analysis by InformationWeek magazine. The publication calculated that 3.47 million IT workers were employed through the end of the first quarter – about 17,000 more than the fourth quarter of 2005.
  • Tech job board reports the tech job market "continues to thrive" as postings on Dice through April rose 31 percent over the past year to 89,286 openings. 
  • Tech-sector job cuts announced in the first quarter were 40 percent lower than the same quarter a year ago. It was the fourth consecutive quarter in which tech cuts were below the previous year’s level, according to a tech-sector report by outplacement consultants Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
  • Industry trade group AeA reports that high-tech companies in the US added 61,000 more jobs than they cut last year – the first such growth since 2000.
  • California maintains its title as tech employment capital of the US. California continues to offer more jobs (904,920) and better pay (averaging $90,554 annually) than any other state, according to AeA.
  • In a quarterly survey by the tech industry trade publication CIO Magazine, 26.3 percent of chief information officers said IT labor was hard to find and keep – double the 13 percent of CIOs who said the same thing a year ago.
  • Will the technical employment comeback continue? Judging by the big boost in venture capital funding in 2005, California can expect further solid job growth, according to AeA. Investors poured $10.4 billion into California firms in 2005, up from $10 billion in 2004 and $8.3 billion in 2003.

Nearly half (43 percent) of the job cuts this year in all sectors resulted from mergers, and 88 percent of those merger cuts occurred in telecommunications.

While the numbers are encouraging for high-tech workers, a survey of members of the Society for Information Management found employers also want applicants with entrepreneurial and business skills. Based on interviews with 96 SIM members, all of them IT managers at firms ranging from small companies to multinational enterprises, the study found that business skills accounted for five of the ten attributes organizations want from staffers in the next three years.


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