Salaries and Confidence Rise for U.S. Tech Professionals

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More technology professionals in the U.S. enjoyed pay raises over the last year driving average salaries up in 2013. Average U.S. tech salaries increased nearly three percent to $87 811 in 2013 up from $85 619 the previous year according to the 2014 2013 Salary Survey from Dice.

The survey also found that two-thirds of respondents (65%) are confident in finding a new, better position. That overwhelming confidence matched with declining salary satisfaction (54%, down from 57%) will keep tech-powered companies on edge about their retention strategies.

While the overall average salary increase was smaller than the previous year's historic jump of more than five percent, employers offered more frequent merit increases.

For those technology professionals whose salary increased in 2013, 45 percent say the increase was sparked by a merit raise, compared to 40 percent the previous year. Salary increases were more likely for tech professionals early in their career or with one to five years of experience, while bonuses are being used for more experienced tech professionals.

Thirty-four percent of respondents received a bonus as part of their 2013 compensation, with average bonuses totaling $9,323.

Tech professionals are recognizing employers' efforts, with just 34 percent of respondents saying their company offered no motivators last year, down from 47 percent who felt that way in 2009. Likewise, the motivator with the most dramatic rise over that timeframe: increased compensation.

"With the tech unemployment rate low, technology professionals know they can take control of their careers," said Shravan Goli, President of Dice. "Tech hiring managers tell me they are stretching budgets where they can to keep their technology work forces focused and satisfied." (Tweet This)

Still More Bounce in California

Silicon Valley tops the list of highest paid metropolitan areas when it comes to tech talent, with an average annual salary of $108,603 and an average annual bonus of $12,458. The seven percent year-over-year increase in salary was partially driven by those tech professionals earning more than $250,000 being included in this year's results.

Excluding those highly paid professionals, Silicon Valley salaries still increased at a greater rate than the national average or five percent year-over-year.

"Companies are betting big that harnessing data can play a major role in their competitive plans and that is leading to high pay for critical skills," said Mr. Goli. "Technology professionals should be volunteering for big data projects, which makes them more valuable to their current employer and more marketable to other employers."

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