Private-Sector IT Pros to See 5.6 Percent Average Pay Boost in 2014

Pay estimates could sting for fed tech workers just returning from furlough.

With many federal information technology employees just coming back to work after 16 days of a government shutdown, reports that their private sector counterparts will see average pay increases of 5.6 percent next year may not be most welcome news. Or maybe it is, if you’re looking to ditch your federal job for the private sector.

The new 2014 Salary Guide by Robert Half Technology found that average base compensation for IT professionals in the United States is expected to rise 5.6 percent on average in 2014, with tech salaries seeing the largest gains among all fields researched, including accounting, finance, marketing and legal.

Employers will pay even higher salary premiums for IT professionals with in-demand skills like mobile applications, software development and business intelligence analysis, Robert Half found. Mobile applications developers will see average increases of 7.8 percent next year, with salaries ranging from $92,750 to $133,500, while software developers will see average increases of 7.7 percent, with salaries ranging from $80,250 to $127,250.

Cybersecurity professionals also will continue to see higher-than-average salaries in 2014, with most in the six-figure range. Data security analysts, for example, will see average salaries ranging from $100,500 to $137,250, an average increase of 5.8 percent, next year, while salaries for information systems security managers will range from $115,250 to $160,000, an increase of 6.8 percent.

Still, competitive salaries are not the only area employers must look to not only to hire IT pros but also to retain them, Robert Half found. Top perks for retaining this in-demand talent include providing access to low-cost healthy meals and snacks and on-site health services, investing in professional development opportunities, offering generous family leave and providing a green work environment, according to the study.  

“Hiring in-demand technology professionals is only half the battle for employers,” the report states. “Retaining them is the other, and that can be an even more difficult challenge. To create a work environment that’s satisfying and enhances productivity – and to stand apart from competitors – many tech firms are offering creative incentives, along with generous compensation packages.”

How do your salary and federal benefits stack up? Do the results make your federal job less attractive, particularly in light of worker furloughs and three years of frozen pay?