The Hottest IT Skills And Salaries

Keeping IT skills current is an ongoing challenge, but training and certification pay off in higher salaries. Find out which roles, skills, certifications, and industries are hot now.

Susan Fogarty

July 7, 2015

8 Slides

IT professionals don't have it easy, but the march of technology is making them more important than ever. And those who master skills in high demand can reap respectable salaries, according to the latest annual survey from Global Knowledge. It comes as little surprise the IT skills most prized by hiring managers today were in information security. But infrastructure professionals, take heart. Rounding out the top five areas most in demand were network engineering, systems engineering, IT architecture and network operations.

The average salary of all respondents came in at $89,891. Although overall salary growth was flat compared to Global Knowledge's 2013 report, other measures showed marked improvement. The percentage of respondents reporting a raise reached 75%, up nearly 20 percentage points in the last 5 years. And a record 63% had received a bonus.

Perhaps more than in any other industry, progress and higher salaries in IT are linked to ongoing professional development. This was clear from survey results, which revealed that 77% respondents participated in professional training in the year prior. Those in security led the pack, with a staggering 90% engaging in some form of professional development. 

Of course, making more money is not the only reason for training or improving skills. In fact, survey respondents ranked increased salary as number 11 out of 15 possible benefits of training. The top choices were staying up to date on technological changes, developing skills that will be useful for future positions, and simply gaining insight in order to do a more effective job. Certifications were the main form of career development, and 70% of those who trained for a certification or sent their team members to training noticed an improvement in on-the-job performance.

Global Knowledge and Windows IT Pro fielded the survey late in 2014, publishing the 2015 IT Skills & Salary Report based on the 11,000 IT professionals and executives in North America who responded. Of the respondents, 17% classified themselves as entry level, 46% as mid-level, 35% at senior level, and 2% as executives. Nearly half said they worked in the areas of network engineering, system operations, systems engineering, IT security, or help desk.

Read on to find out what survey respondents had to say about specific skills and certifications, as well as their effects on salary.

Image: Sohel Parvez Haque/iStockphoto

About the Author(s)

Susan Fogarty

Director of ContentSusan Fogarty is the Director of Content for Interop and UBM’s media properties InformationWeek and Network Computing. She’s an industry veteran who knows the IT audience very well, having served in content development for the event for four years and media for IT professionals for more than 20 years. Prior to joining UBM in 2012, she held an Editor position with Dell and worked at TechTarget, where she served as an Editorial Director, for 11 years.

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