Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of both our annual Salary Survey and our smaller Salary Survey PLUS polls. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.
'Tis the season to leave the office for a few days and relax, right? Each year in summer the average working professional makes plans to leave work for a bit. Maybe they travel. Maybe they stay at home and work on projects around the house. Hey, guess what? Take a real vacation, stay-at-homers. Go somewhere you've never been, or at least leave town for a day or two.
Vacations are an important element of work-life balance, and as various sources have reported over the years, far too many workers don't take full, or even partial advantage of their allotted vacation benefits. Your employer provides you with paid vacation days for a reason, and it's not because your temperament improves by never taking any days off.
At any rate, the point of all of this is to refer to a couple of questions from the Not-So-Serious section of our most recent Salary Survey PLUS about Big Data certifications, key findings of which were printed in our July issue. Those of you who are taking vacation season seriously can compare notes, and maybe the homebodies will get a few ideas.
For many vacationing IT workers, the whole point of taking a break is to get away from it all. On the other hand, many people like to stay at least a little bit connected. Even if they've promise a spouse or significant other that they won't check work e-mails a single time, well, who knows, what if some breaking news were to hit?'
So in the age of Airbnb and VRBO, we asked survey respondents what their most important point of inquiry is when making arrangements to stay at this or that vacation spot. Here's what we learned:
My top priority when arranging to stay at a vacation property is:
Cost. Am I getting a good deal? — 35 percent of respondents
Comfort. Does it have the right accommodations? — 34 percent
Cleanliness. Am I going to bring home bedbugs? — 20 percent
Coverage. How's the wi-fi? — 11 percent
As you can see from our breakdown of what you might call the Four Cs, most certified Big Data professionals either want a good deal, or they want to really relax. Maybe that's because it's assumed that there will be wi-fi, and that the place will be clean. Those two are more or less a given if you're traveling to a resort or hotel, so perhaps they don't weigh as heavily on most minds.
We also asked survey respondents to name their most critical personal electronic device. In other words, if you were about to leave town and you could only take one of your precious gadgets along, which one would it be?
The personal technology item I absolutely could not live without is my:
Phone — 61.5 percent of respondents
Laptop — 22 percent
Tablet — 5.5 percent
Personal health tracker (Fitbit, etc.) — 4.1 percent
eReader (Kindle, Nook, etc.) — 2.8 percent
Media player (iPod, etc.) — 2.2 percent
Smart watch — 1 percent
Sport watch — 0.9 percent
This ought to make Samsung and Apple happy. The phone is still king. And, really, probably an essential travel device for many, given the amount of simple tasks it can perform. Smart watches, on the other hand? Still not a thing.