Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate
Posted on
September 8, 2023
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Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our annual Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

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Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate is a key credential for cloud security specialists.

Information security is a big job, and it's getting bigger — especially for anyone who is responsible for protecting cloud assets. Sometimes the sky is so filled with atmospheric clouds that nothing else is visible, and IT clouds are probably starting to seem that ubiquitous to many people surveying the information technology skyscape.

Software colossus Microsoft has plenty of room to grow before its cloud services division could rival the impact of top competitor Amazon Web Services (AWS). Azure is already taking over the Microsoft certification scheme, however, and Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate (No. 15 on our most recent Salary Survey 75 List) verified a critically important skill set.

Here's what the salary picture looks like for Azure Security Engineer Associate holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $135,800
Median Annual Salary: $132,500
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 8 percent
Very Satisfied: 36 percent
Satisfied: 32 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 20 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 4 percent

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $66,150
Median Annual Salary: $48,750
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 3.9 percent
Very Satisfied: 12.6 percent
Satisfied: 27.2 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 38.8 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 17.5 percent

The largest single body of Azure Security Engineer Associate holders to participate in the survey is made up of residents of the United States (26.9 percent). The rest of the Azure Security Engineer Associate holders we heard from are spread across 42 other countries: Afghanistan, Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Japan, Kenya, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Netherlands, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and Vietnam.

The IT security realm is typically dominated by male professionals, but a surprisingly robust segment of the Azure Security Engineer Associate holders we heard from — 16.3 percent of those surveyed — are women. A still dominant 78.8 percent are men, with 4.4 percent who chose not to identify their gender, and a tiny handful who are transgender male (0.6 percent). Also going against type, the Azure Security Engineer Associate is notably youthful, with exactly 75 percent of those surveyed either between the ages of 25 and 34 (33.6 percent) or between the ages of 35 and 44 (41.4 percent). The next-largest group is credential holders between the ages of 45 and 54 — 21.9 percent of respondents — with 2.3 percent between the ages of 55 and 64, and the remaining 0.8 percent age 75 or older.

A notable 88 percent of the Azure Security Engineer Associate holders who responded to the survey have an educational background that includes time spent at a college or university. The highest level of education completed by most Azure Security Engineer Associate holders is either a bachelor's degree (43.8 percent of respondents), master's degree (36.7 percent), associate's degree (3.0 percent), doctorate (3.1 percent), or professional degree (0.8 percent). The remaining 15 percent of Azure Security Engineer Associate holders either topped off their learning years by completing some level of post-high school technical training (7 percent of those surveyed), departed the realm of formal education after graduating from high school (3.9 percent), or entered the workforce with no formal education (0.8 percent).

Employment among Azure Security Engineer Associate holders is solid, with 80 percent of credential holders employed full-time. The rest either have part time jobs (3.1 percent of those surveyed), are primarily students (6.9 percent), are enjoying a sabbatical (5 percent), or are unemployed (also 5 percent). For most respondents, full-time employment means a regular work schedule of either between 41 and 50 hours per week (40.9 percent of respondents) or the standard 40 hours per week (37 percent). Out of the remaining 22 percent of those surveyed, 9.4 percent work between 31 and 39 hours per week, 11 percent put in more than 50 hours per week, 0.9 percent are on the clock for between 20 and 30 hours per week, and a fortunate 0.8 percent have a full-time work schedule of fewer than 20 hours.

The COVID-19 pandemic dramatically reshuffled workplaces worldwide in 2020, and there's strong evidence of that here: A notable 37 percent of the Azure Security Engineer Associate holders we heard from are spending their entire work schedule at home, with 20.5 percent working beneath the same roof that's overhead when they sleep at night for more than 40 hours per week, and a further 17.2 percent working 40 hours per week from home. The rest haven't entirely separated from their cubicles (or corner offices), working from home either between 31 and 39 hours per week (15.8 percent of respondents), between 21 and 30 hours per week (16.5 percent), between 10 and 20 hours per week (14.2 percent), or for fewer than 10 hours per week (15.8 percent).

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of Azure Security Engineer Associate holders we heard from are employed at the senior specialist level (30 percent). The rest, in descending order, are either managers (23.1 percent), specialists (18.1 percent), directors (11.9 percent), senior managers (8.8 percent), rank-and-file employees (7.5 percent), or executives (0.6 percent).

A solid 35 percent of Azure Security Engineer Associate holders who responded to the survey are IT veterans, having worked in a role that directly utilizes one or more of their certified skills for more than a decade. The rest have been plying their certified skills for either between zero years (1 to 11 months) and 2 years (10.6 percent), between 3 and 5 years (22 percent), between 6 and 8 years (21.2 percent), or between 9 and 10 years (11.2 percent).

Finally, here's the view of Azure Security Engineer Associate holders on key questions from the survey about how certification impacts job performance:

At my current job I use skills learned or enhanced through certification:
Several times a day: 39.4 percent
Several times a week: 32.5 percent
Several times a month: 14.4 percent
Occasionally: 9.4 percent
Rarely: 4.3 percent

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills.
Strongly agree: 38.8 percent
Agree: 40 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 12.5 percent
Disagree: 3.7 percent
Strongly Disagree: 5 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 36.3 percent
Agree: 43.8 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 11.2 percent
Disagree: 5 percent
Strongly Disagree: 3.7 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 31.9 percent
Agree: 39.4 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 17.5 percent
Disagree: 7.5 percent
Strongly Disagree: 3.7 percent

PAST MICROSOFT CERTIFIED: AZURE SECURITY ENGINEER ASSOCIATE DEEP FOCUS FEATURES

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