Make More Out of Less: Accepting a Pay Cut

When it comes to the IT job market these days, the old marketing phrase applies: “I have good news and bad news.”

The good news is, despite the recession and grim reports of unemployment in so many industries, hiring is still strong in IT. In fact,’s research shows IT is one of the few industries expected to add employees this year.

The bad news is job seekers may be forced to work for less money than they are used to, while the employed should not expect significant salary increases anytime soon.

According to a recent survey from the Society for Human Resource Management, 5 percent of businesses reduced salaries in the past year. In addition, some businesses are reducing work hours, benefits and early retirement options to cut costs.

The 2009 IT Salary Survey by Janco Associates found that the mean IT salary fell from $79,005 to $77,367 from January 2008 to January 2009 — a decline of about 2 percent.

Lily Mok, vice president of Gartner’s CIO research organization, discussed the results of Gartner’s annual compensation study.

“From our observations from the survey in 2008, where actually in the market, the recession worries were looming, we still see hiring pretty strong for most of the hot jobs and skills we’ve been tracking for years — for example, enterprise architect, project management,” she said. “I think the demand for people with the right skill set will continue, even in this kind of market.”

Mok said the…



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