Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on IBM Certified Administrator

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Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of both our annual Salary Survey and our smaller Salary Survey PLUS polls. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

There are several IBM certifications that fall under the general label of IBM Certified Administrator.IBM has one of those certification programs (there are a few others out there, including at Oracle) where a given title, in this instance IBM Certified Administrator — No. 48 on our most recent Salary Survey 75 list — encompasses a handful of credentials. A quick search of the IBM certification website turns up 8 different software specializations for which you can become an IBM Certified Administrator.

For Salary Survey purposes, we lump them all together under the label IBM Certified Administrator. So bear in mind as you read through the following data that we are discussing are several distinct credentials all wearing the same hat.

Here’s what the salary picture looks like for IBM Certified Administrator holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $113,060
Median Annual Salary: $120,000
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 12.2 percent
Very Satisfied: 44.5 percent
Satisfied: 33.3 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 10 percent
Not At All Satisfied: [No responses]

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $49,300
Median Annual Salary: $26,670
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: [No responses]
Very Satisfied: 7.9 percent
Satisfied: 57.1 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 28.6 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 6.4 percent

The largest single body of IBM Certified Administrator holders who responded to the survey is made up U.S. residents (41.6 percent), but we also heard from certified professionals in 12 other countries: Argentina, Colombia, India, Ireland, Netherlands, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, the United Arab Emirates, and Venezuela.

Our survey pool contains mostly male IBM Certified Administrator holders (91.7 percent of respondents), but we did hear from a handful of female credential holders. There’s an impressive diversity of ages, with 8.8 percent of those surveyed between the ages of 19 and 24, 17.4 percent between the ages of 25 and 34, 26.1 percent between the ages of 35 and 44, 30.4 percent between the ages of 45 and 54, 13 percent between the ages of 55 and 64, and even 4.3 percent checking in from beyond the standard U.S. retirement milepost between the ages of 65 and 74.

In terms of the highest level of formal education completed, there’s a somewhat unusual mix among IBM Certified Administrator holders. The largest single group is those who completed a master’s degree (47.8 percent of respondents), followed by those who never got any college degree but did complete some level of technical training after high school (26.1 percent). The rest either peaked out at a bachelor’s degree (13 percent of respondents), an associate’s degree (4.3 percent), or a high school diploma (8.7 percent).

Full-time employment among IBM Certified Administrator holders is essentially 100 percent: 0nly 95.8 percent of those surveyed are currently working, but the remaining 4.2 percent are all presently on sabbatical. Among those currently on the clock, most put in either between 41 and 50 hours per week (47.8 percent of respondents) or have a standard 40-hour work schedule (34.7 percent). The outliers are the 13 percent of those surveyed who work more than 50 hours per week, and the fortunate 4.3 percent whose work week falls between 31 and 39 hours.

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of IBM Certified Administrator holders, 52 percent of those surveyed, are at the senior specialist level. The rest, in descending order, are either specialists (24 percent), or senior managers and directors (12 percent per each).

Slightly more than half of those certified — 52 percent — are IT veterans, having worked in a role that directly utilizes one or more of their certified skills for more than a decade. The rest have been plying their certified skills for either between zero years (1 to 11 months) and 2 years (4 percent of respondents), between 3 and 5 years (28 percent), or between 6 and 8 years (16 percent).

Finally, here’s the view of IBM Certified Administrator holders on key questions from the survey about how certification impacts job performance:

At my current job I use skills learned or enhanced through certification: 
Several times a day: 36.4 percent
Several times a week: 31.6 percent
Several times a month: 16 percent
Occasionally: 12.4 percent
Rarely: 3.6 percent

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 28.4 percent
Agree: 12.4 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 52.4 percent
Disagree: 3.2 percent
Strongly Disagree: [No responses]

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 28.4 percent
Agree: 27.6 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 16 percent
Disagree: 23.6 percent
Strongly Disagree: 4.4 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 32.4 percent
Agree: 16.4 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 32 percent
Disagree: 12.8 percent
Strongly Disagree: 6.4 percent

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CertMag Staff


Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

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