Salary Survey EXTRA

Our 2013 Salary Survey turned up a lot of wonderful information. We got so much great data, in fact, that we didn’t have room to cram it all into our winter edition earlier this month. Instead of letting that information reside in the dustbin of history, however, we’re keeping going to parcel it out here at

Each week until it’s time for the next annual salary survey, we’ll turn to a different overlooked niche of the 2013 Salary Survey and use this space to show you what we find.

March 10, 2014 — Plenty of Jobs to Go Around?

Many forecasters predict that there will be a significant shortage of IT workers available on the world labor market in the near future. That means more jobs than employees, which would seem to be an enviable position for IT professionals to find themselves in. A seasoned pro, or even a newcomer with a solid skill set, can more or less choose his or her employer, right?

Maybe it’s partly lingering angst from the recent recession, but the Salary Survey indicates that many are still feeling a little wary about the future availability of jobs. We asked respondents to rate their level of concern regarding the job market, and also regarding their own individual job security, and here’s what we found:

How concerned are you about the IT job market?

Extremely concerned — 37.7 percent

Concerned — 23.7 percent

No strong feelings either way — 22.4 percent

Not very concerned — 7.5 percent

Not concerned at all — 8.8 percent

How concerned are you about your own job security?

Extremely concerned — 39.3 percent

Concerned — 27.2 percent

No strong feelings either way — 16.7 percent

Not very concerned — 7.9 percent

Not concerned at all — 8.3 percent


March 3, 2014 — Get There First with the Most Certs

How many certifications does it take to have a successful IT career? The safe answer is probably, “More than one.” That still doesn’t shed very much light on the issue, however, so it’s good that we have the Salary Survey. Many IT pros start out with a broad, entry-level certification that covers a lot of bases and then specialize from there. And after that? When you consider that certification programs are constantly evolving, and many certifications require the holder to periodically recertify, well, you can probably keep going as long as you like.

We asked survey respondents a simple question: How many professional certifications do you hold? Only 10 percent of respondents have no more than a single certification. As for the rest of the results, let’s just say that the most popular answer could potentially double as the title of Western starring Clint Eastwood. A Fistful of Certifications, anyone? Pass the popcorn.

One cert — 10 percent

Two certs — 13.8 percent

Three certs — 15.8 percent

Four certs — 12 percent

Five certs — 11.5 percent

Six certs — 6.7 percent

Seven certs — 3.3 percent

Eight certs — 2.4 percent

Nine certs — 1.4 percent

Ten or more certs — 23 percent


Feb. 24, 2014 — Why Certify?

People have different reasons for pursuing certification. There’s the obvious benefit of potentially increasing your salary. That’s a big carrot for a lot of folks. Money is far from the only motivator, however, and the Salary Survey revealed that there are quite a few paths that lead people to find a study group, or schedule a workshop, and start checking off the steps to an A+ or PC Pro, a CCNP, a CGEIT, or perhaps a VCP5-DT.

Setting aside the clear incentive of higher salary, we asked survey respondents to pick the two most applicable out of 10 possible rationales to get their next (or first) certification. Here’s how it played out, first to last:

Gain qualifications for a future job — 19.8 percent

Gain greater confidence in my own skills — 18.5 percent

Earn prestige and recognition among colleagues — 14.5 percent

Improve and/or confirm my qualifications for my present job — 10.7 percent

Gain advanced access to technical data — 10.5 percent

Become eligible for more responsibility such as a lead or supervisory role — 10.2 percent

Prove to myself than I can get this credential — 6 percent

I like being part of a community of certified professionals — 4.5 percent

My employer requires it — 4.5 percent

I appreciate the additional support from IT vendors — 0.8 percent

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