Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on Teradata 14 Certified Technical Specialist

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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 These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.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's good pay for Big Data professionals who get the Teradata 14 Certified Technical Specialist credential.As we learned again and again during the production cycle on the recent Big Data-themed Summer Edition of Certification Magazine, our ability to collect and store data is quickly outstripping our ability to analyze and process it. So it’s a good time to be fluent in any product that assists with data analysis.

One company at the forefront of the data analysis sector is Teradata, and your working knowledge of Teradata tool could be worth a lot. The Teradata 14 Certified Technical Specialist (CTS) certification made a big splash in our most recent annual Salary Survey, climbing all the way to No. 18 on our Salary Survey 75 list.

Teradata has a global footprint, and while the largest single group of CTS holders to respond to the survey are U.S. residents (30 percent of those surveyed), we got more than a taste of that international flavor. Our non-U.S. respondents checked in from 14 other countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, China, India, Ireland, Pakistan, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. It’s great to be CTS-certified in the United States, where credential holders enjoyed an average annual salary of $131,220 in 2016, with a median annual salary of $115,000. Outside the United States, the average annual salary dipped to $57,040, with a median figure of $42,500.

Most of the CTS holders in the survey are men (86.7 percent overall), but the 13.3 percent of respondents who are women is an encouraging number in the male-dominated IT realm. CTS certification skews younger than many certs, with nearly 75 percent of respondents either between the ages of 35 and 44 (36.7 percent of those surveyed), between the ages of 25 and 34 (36.7 percent), or between the ages of 19 and 24 (0.6 percent). The “old folks” in the CTS crowd are either between the ages of 45 and 54 (10 percent), or between the ages of 55 and 64 (16 percent).

With many credentials, there’s at least some opportunity for people who don’t make it all the way to a college degree, but that path doesn’t look promising here. The highest level of education attained by most CTS holders is either a bachelor’s degree (62 percent of those surveyed) or master’s degree (33.7 percent). That leaves just 4.7 percent, and all of those guys have doctorates. So if you’re aiming to get CTS certified without going to college, then be prepare to blaze your own trail.

For just the second or third time in going on 10 months of writing up Deep Focus recaps, we’ve landed on a cert with full employment: 100 percent of CTS holders in the survey have full-time jobs. Most are either on the clock for between 41 and 50 hours per week (39.3 percent of those surveyed) or have a standard 40-hour week (44 percent). The outliers are a fair-sized group that puts in more than 50 hours per week (13.7 percent of respondents) and a handful who work between 31 and 39 hours per week (3 percent).

If you have a CTS credential, then don’t expect to work in management, or at least not right away. A solid 70 percent of those surveyed are at the senior specialist level in the organizations where they work, with 13 percent at the specialist level, and the remaining 17 percent rating themselves as rank-and-file employees.

One factor that may be in play there is a (relative) lack of experience. A notable 60 percent of CTS holders who responded to our survey have worked in a role that utilizes one or more of their certified skills for either between zero years (1-11 months) and 2 years (10 percent of those surveyed), between 3 years and 5 years (30 percent), or between 6 years and 8 years (20 percent). Among the veterans, 6.7 percent have been plying their certified skills for between 9 and 10 years, while 33.3 percent have been at it for more than 10 years.

Finally, here’s the view of CTS 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: 60 percent
Several times a week: 9.6 percent
Several times a month: 17.7 percent
Occasionally: 12.7 percent
Rarely: [No responses]

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 16.7 percent
Agree: 53.3 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 26.7 percent
Disagree: 3.3 percent
Strongly Disagree: [No responses]

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 23.3 percent
Agree: 63.4 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 8.3 percent
Disagree: 5 percent
Strongly Disagree: [No responses]

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 26.3 percent
Agree: 46.7 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 23.5 percent
Disagree: 3.5 percent
Strongly Disagree: [No responses]

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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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