Salary Survey Extra is a series of occasional dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent annual Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.
The most obvious component of any IT professional's compensation is salary. What's the number in the "amount" section on your paycheck? Discussions of what workers are paid often center almost exclusively around the dollar amount flowing from the corporate account to each employee's bank or credit union. When we do our annual Salary Survey each year, that's the most popular information by far: What is the average annual dollar income of IT professionals who hold (Your Certification Here)?
So, yes, money talks. There are, however, many other important elements of total compensation. Ask your employer sometime whether money, be it an hourly wage or biweekly salary, is the only factor he or she must consider when deciding whether the company has the resources available to make a new hire. We ask about the other side of compensation in the Salary Survey as well, and though we don't isolate any of those elements, we do aim for a broad overview of the everything else that your employer provides.
Benefits. Whatever the extent to which we may obsess about numbers, employee benefits are also a key element of any employment decision. In the United States, most middle-class workers wouldn't dream of accepting a job with no health benefits. And what would you say to a prospective employer who didn't offer any paid time off? (Actually, some of America's more revolutionary IT employers are taking distinctly radical approaches to the traditional PTO benefit, but that's another topic for another time.)
We asked Salary Survey respondents to tell us what benefits are part of their total compensation. There's a lot of fairly standard information, as well as a few results that may surprise you.
Health and Wellness: Many American workers strongly, if not entirely, rely on their employer to pay for medical expenses. The breakdown of common wellness benefits and the percentage of Salary Survey respondents who receive them is as follows:
Health Insurance — 74.1 percent
Dental Insurance — 42.2 percent
Vision Insurance — 32.7 percent
Retirement and Long-Term Financial Security: Though many workers may not think of it this way, their employer will continue to pay them for years after they leave the company. The breakdown of common retirement and long-term security benefits and the percentage of Salary Survey respondents who receive them is as follows:
401(k) or Equivalent — 29.6 percent
Pension or other Company-Funded Retirement Account — 36.5 percent
Stock Options — 15 percent
Bonus or Incentive Program — 43.3 percent
Attendance: Nobody wants to be at the office every day, right? The breakdown of common attendance benefits and the percentage of Salary Survey respondents who receive them is as follows:
Paid Time Off — 36.3 percent
Sick Time — 65.4 percent
Flexible Scheduling — 16 percent
Child Care — 15.7 percent
Parking and Transit Assistance — 17.5 percent
Continuing Education: This is viewed by some employers as being a benefit to both the employee and the company: We'll help you improve your skills, and that will make you more valuable to us. The breakdown of common continuing education benefits and the percentage of Salary Survey respondents who receive them is as follows:
Tuition Assistance — 21.1 percent
Training and Certification Assistance — 56.8 percent