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Pay for IT workers recovers from last years fall

NoPalaver found that average annual pay for IT professionals passed over the &pound40,000 mark to &pound40,092 in 2013, up from &pound39,520 in 2012. NoPalaver says that the growth in the & lsquo;App Economy’ is helping to outweigh the continued outsourcing of lower paid IT jobs to India and the Philippines.

NoPalaver says that although there has been a surge in IT hiring this has not yet led to substantial pay increases – partly as pay increases have been supressed by a relatively large overhang of underemployed IT staff looking for work.

In particular there was notable growth in jobs for web design and development professionals, as the number of permanent roles jumped 10%, from 37,000 in 2011-12 to 41,000 in 2012-13. Average pay for web developers is now&pound28,808, up from &pound28,714.

NoPalaver says that demand for web developers and designers has soared over the last year, as the interest in m-commerce continues to grow (e-commerce through mobile phones and tablets). Businesses are looking to capitalise on this by ensuring their websites are optimised for smartphones and tablets, which requires website redesigns.

NoPalaver adds that the number of software development professionals jumped 5.6% in 2013, with the number of roles increasing to 169,000 from 160,000 in 2012. Professionals within this sector also had one of the biggest increases in pay, although that was still a modest 2.4% increase over the last year to &pound39,624, up from &pound38,740.

IT directors were the only professionals who saw a cut to their wages, which dropped by 0.9%, to &pound63,263.

NoPalaver says that this runs contrary to the trend in most areas where directors have seen their pay rise at a faster rate than more junior employees. NoPalaver says that many IT departments are still undervalued by corporates.

Graham Jenner, Director at NoPalaver, says: “As we are still in the early stages of economic recovery, it is understandable that pay for IT workers has not yet undergone a dramatic jump. But consistent demand is going to lead to a more noticeable increase in contract and permanent pay over the longer run.”

“It is also interesting to see that the salaries of junior, and often much younger professionals in the IT sector are growing at a faster pace than that of directors, especially as the unstoppable rise in pay for board directors is so heavily reported.”

Recent research by NoPalaver found that the UK’s IT workforce has bounced back from recession and is now at its highest level since records began in 1978. In June 2013, the total number of self-employed and employed UK IT workers reached 732,000*.

Graham Jenner says: “The IT sector saw salaries decline in the aftermath of the credit crunch as businesses struggled to prioritise IT on stretched budgets. It is often the case that businesses cut back on discretionary IT projects when the economy is flailing, but expand their IT budgets when the economy gets into recovery mode.”

“Contractors have done well during the bouts of economic instability we have seen over the last few years. Owing to the general nature of IT work, a large proportion of professionals within the IT sector work on a contract or project basis anyway, but when budgets are tight this trend accelerates. This is because businesses feel more comfortable hiring contractors over permanent staff as they offer more flexibility and are a lower risk.”



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