This feature first appeared in the Winter 2015 issue of Certification Magazine. Click here to get your own print or digital copy.
The shadow of the recession begun by the subprime mortgage crisis has darkened both the U.S. and world economic outlooks for so long that it’s begun to feel more like a permanent resident than a disruptive houseguest. Another day, another reason to (figuratively) stay inside. Where’s the sunshine?
Even if the pace of recovery and growth is frustrating, however, there are definitely reasons to be optimistic. If you’ve been waiting on the sidelines and fuming about the scoreboard, then it might be time to get back in the game. We’ve just been given a strong signal that quite a few IT players are already feeling that rush of exhilaration that always takes hold when a comeback is starting.
Certification Magazine resurrected the Salary Survey last year to an encouraging, if limited response. We knew it would take some time to get our mojo back after a years-long lapse in publication — but we didn’t think it would only take 12 months. It’s still too soon to claim that we’re all the way back, but we can say that the response to this year’s Salary Survey is overwhelmingly larger than what we got from the hardy crowd that rolled in for last year’s back-in-business celebration.
And there’s good news on several fronts. For example, of the more than 18,000 individuals who responded to our survey, 91.7 percent are employed full-time, versus just 2.6 percent who don’t presently hold employment of any kind. Even allowing for the likelihood that people with no employment are almost certainly underrepresented in any body of responders to an employment survey, those are encouraging numbers.
And if you do have IT skills, then there’s almost no reason for you NOT to have a job. Whether in creating the software that sifts through mountains of accumulating data, or in driving the emerging Internet of Things, or in revolutionizing the development and growth of almost anything you can point to, information technology has a huge role to play in transforming the world we live in.
Employers are almost aggressively competing for certain skill sets, and even in areas where salary growth may have plateaued there’s still plenty of compensation to go around. IT salaries are maybe not 100 percent as stable as, say, the Rock of Gibraltar, but it’s close: Just 7.4 percent of survey respondents had their pay cut in 2014, with 92.6 percent holding the line or seeing their pay increase.
TABLE TALK : So what did we do with all of our data? The same thing that they do in Hollywood, naturally. We created a power list of 75 Top IT Certifications. We learned a few other things, too. It’s all available right now in our latest quarterly issue, or you can pull up a virtual chair and settle in here at CertMag.com for the big (and gradual) reveal.