Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on ISACA CRISC

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Salary Survey Extra is a series of periodic dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

ISACA-certified individuals are often listed in survey findings as earning fat salaries. Does the CRISC certification fall in line?This year marks the 50th anniversary of IT governance and cybersecurity association ISACA, and one of the hallmarks of that half-century in operation is a thriving professional certification program. ISACA credentials are widely known and widely respected and typically associated with generous compensation.

The Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC) credential, No. 7 in our most recent Salary Survey, is an excellent example. We didn’t feature it in last year’s Deep Focus series, but the CRISC landed at No. 5 on the 2018 Salary Survey 75 list, with a U.S. average annual salary of $143,810, and this year’s salary figure is actually even a little bit higher.

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

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $144,510
Median Annual Salary: $141,880
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 15.8 percent
Very Satisfied: 8.8 percent
Satisfied: 54.4 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 14 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 7 percent

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $89,500
Median Annual Salary: $88,130
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 6.3 percent
Very Satisfied: 9.5 percent
Satisfied: 42.9 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 39.7 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 1.6 percent

The largest single body of CRISC holders to participate in the survey is made up of U.S. residents (48 percent), but we also heard from credential holders in 25 other countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, India, Ireland, Japan, Kenya, Kuwait, Netherlands, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Spain, the Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom.

A solid majority of the CRISC holders who participated in the survey are men, but a notably expansive 13 percent of respondents are women. CRISC certification is heavily concentrated among mid-career professionals, with 30.8 percent of those surveyed between the ages of 35 and 44, and 37.5 percent between the ages of 45 and 54. The outliers are the 8.3 percent of respondents who are between the ages of 25 and 34, the 21.7 percent between the ages of 55 and 64, and a miniscule 1.7 percent between the ages of 65 and 74.

Roughly 90 percent of the CRISC holders to participate in the survey have an educational background that includes time spent at a college or university. The highest level of formal education completed by most CRISC holders is either a master’s degree (49.1 percent of those surveyed) or bachelor’s degree (31.7 percent), with 5.8 percent having topped out at an associate’s degrees, and 1.7 percent apiece having risen all the way up to hold either a doctorate or a professional degree. That leaves just 6.7 percent of those surveyed who completed some level of post-high school technical training, 2.5 percent who walked away from formal education after getting a high school diploma, and 0.8 percent who are presently in school.

Out in the real world, an impressively strong 97.6 percent of CRISC holders are employed full-time, with just 1.6 percent holding part-time jobs, and 0.8 percent presently unemployed. Among those who have full-time jobs, most are at work either for the standard 40 hours per week (37.5 percent of respondents) or for between 41 and 50 hours (40.9 percent). The rest either have a lighter-than-usual schedule of between 31 and 39 hours (8.3 percent of those surveyed) or a burdensome workload of more than 50 hours per week (13.3 percent).

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of CRISC holders who participated in the survey are at the senior specialist level (31.2 percent of those surveyed). The rest, in descending order, are either managers (22.4 percent of respondents), directors (18.4 percent), senior managers (12 percent), executives (9.6 percent), specialists (5.6 percent), or rank-and-file employees (0.8 percent).

More than three-fourths (76 percent) of the CRISC holders we heard from 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 (1.6 percent of respondents), between 3 and 5 years (5.6 percent), between 6 and 8 years (6.4 percent), or between 9 and 10 years (10.4 percent).

Finally, here’s the view of CRISC 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: 69.6 percent
Several times a week: 17.6 percent
Several times a month: 6.4 percent
Occasionally: 6.4 percent
Rarely: [No responses]

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 40 percent
Agree: 41.6 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 16 percent
Disagree: 1.6 percent
Strongly Disagree: 0.8 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 27.5 percent
Agree: 43.5 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 22.6 percent
Disagree: 5.6 percent
Strongly Disagree: 0.8 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 22.6 percent
Agree: 38.8 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 32.2 percent
Disagree: 5.6 percent
Strongly Disagree: 0.8 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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