Tech salaries in the US continue to rise, report Dice
While the pandemic may have halted pay increases and slowed salary raises for many sectors, the tech and IT sector in the US witnessed growth with tech job salaries rising by 3.6% in 2020, with expected to continue to rise throughout 2021, according to the Dice 2021 Tech Salary Report.
This is hardly surprising given the pandemic and the increase in rates of digital transformation by businesses.
“Across nearly industry, COVID-19 accelerated priorities with regard to digitisation and digital transformation,” states the report. “Whereas e-commerce portals and digital offerings may have once been an afterthought for some organisations, the need for such features quickly became vital to organisational survival particularly for brick-and-mortar stores that had to temporarily close their doors.”
Biggest rises for cybersecurity analysts and data scientists
The occupations experiencing the biggest salary increases are those helping organizations process and analyze data, digitize and innovate their product offerings, ensuring their businesses remain efficient, profitable and crucially safe during the pandemic.
Due to the widespread adoption of remote work, which led to increased security vulnerabilities, cybersecurity analysts were, and continue to be, in demand, and this role saw the largest growth in salary of any occupation, up 16.3% to US$103.106..
As companies seek lower costs and faster product delivery, hiring of devops specialists who can help teams innovate faster and become more efficient, has become more common. This means develops engineers also saw significant pay rises of 12.2% (US$115,125).
It’s not just down to the pandemic that tech jobs are in demand, however, with longer-term trends in play. This is relevant to data scientists in particular, an increasingly in-demand role that saw one of the highest wage increases of 2020 at 12.8% (US$119.898) – due to data becoming increasingly valuable to businesses across nearly every industry.
And it’s a trend set to increase throughout 2021 and onwards. “Data-related professions will no doubt see their worth continue to increase, as businesses bind their long-term strategies to data analytics,” states the report.
Tech support engineers are also in demand given the salary increase to 8.2% (US$68,651), as are cloud engineers (up 6.3% to US$136,479).
When it comes to falling salaries in tech, it is the more traditional IT roles that are suffering with database admin staff, whose jobs are increasingly being automated, seeing salary declines of 4.9% and help desk technicians down 4%.
AI-based skills in high demand
When it comes the highest-paying skills, the trends of the past few years continue to dominate, with businesses nation-wide continuing to realise the importance of collecting, storing, cleaning and analysing enormous amounts of data.
The highest average salary increases were for the skills of RabbitMQ messaging broker, Vagrant for virtual-environment processing and the OmniGraffle diagramming tool.
AI skills saw a YOY salary increase of 7.3% (to US$131,907), while Machine Learning skills rose 3.1% to US$125,197. Natural Language Processing, which allows software to understand the nuances of human speech, and is vital to many emerging AI apps, rose 4.8% and MapReduce, a programming model vital for Big Data, also increased 2.1%.
2020 also saw a rise in interest in newer tools and frameworks, resulting in a compensation rise in these areas too, with more businesses becoming interested in Blockchain skills, with salaries increasing 5.2%.
Austin and Orlando among highest-paying tech states
Tech wages rose both in original tech hub, Silicon Valley, and Boston by 2.4%, which corresponds with the national average wage, suggesting their status as well-established tech hubs is alive and well.
However, it was in rising tech hub cities like Austin and Orlando, many of which are welcoming tech giants and startups following an exodus of some firms from Silicon Valley, where tech salaries have really risen.
Charlotte in North Caroline and Orlando in Florida witnessed the biggest tech pay rises, at 13.8% and 13.4%, respectively. This was closely followed by New York City with an 11.6% and then Austin (9.7% rise) and Philadelphia (9.3% rise).
It’s in such cities where local officials have spent years trying to foster a local tech scene, attracting startups fuelled by venture capital and creating a steady pipeline of young techies thanks to burgeoning ecosystems and regional universities.
Take Austin, which has witnessed an influx of tech giant relocations in the last year, from Tesla and Hewlett Packard to Oracle’s recent announcement. The city’s lower corporate taxes, looser regulations and affordable living make it a top tech hub.
However, there have also been declines with tech salary decreases also note, including in Portland, Seattle and Chicago.
Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.