2014 salary survey: Tech pros have the edge over employers

More than two-thirds 'confident' they could find a better job, says recent Dice survey

Salaries and perks are rising, jobs are being created faster than they can be filled and tech unemployment remains extremely low. It's a good time to be a tech pro. That's the upshot of Dice's annual salary survey, which says IT professionals have a distinct advantage over organizations, who will need to step it up this year to keep staff in their employ. At 54%, barely more than half of tech pros report being satisfied with their job, a 3% decrease from last year. Coupled with the fact that 65% said they are confident they could find a "new, better" position this year, employers will have to aggressively work to retain staff.

[ See also: How to get the job you want in 2014's hot IT job market ]

One way companies are responding is pay increases. At $87,811, the average U.S. tech salary is up 2.6% this year, a far cry from 2012's historic 5.3% jump. Last year marked the ninth in a row with an increase in tech salaries; the last year to see a dip was 2004. However, Dice notes "employers are using selective and strategic increases in compensation to hold onto experienced tech staff." While salaries didn't jump dramatically, Dice reports organizations employed more-frequent merit increases. Tech professionals early in their career or with 1 to 5 years of experience were more likely to see salary bumps, while more veteran staff enjoyed bonuses. Thirty-four percent of respondents received a bonus last year, the average being $9,323. via Dice

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