It’s a great time to be an IT consultant! The demand for technology professionals is increasing year after year, the unemployment rate is only 3.5% (Dice.com) and new, bleeding edge technology makes working in the field exciting. Technology in general is booming, however there are certain roles with in IT that are especially in demand and therefore, are earning a higher pay check.
According to ComputerWorld and Salary.com, you can look for these to be some of the highest paid IT jobs in 2014:
Software Architect – Software Architects are valuable to a company because they have a great understanding of the technical aspect of things but also have the ability respond and understand the business side of things as well. The two together make a highly sought-after candidate. ComputerWorld reports the average salary for a Software Architect ranges from $144,000 – $170,000. The Bureau of Labor Statistics also reports this job growing 22% until 2022.
Network Architect – With many companies turning to cloud computing and going wireless, the need for Network Architects is steadily increasing. Making on average between $132,000 – $154,000, this role is expected to grow steadily at 15% over the next 10 years.
Data Architect – Salary.com reports the annual median salary for a Data Architect as $100,717. As “Big Data” continues to be a priority for many IT departments, this role will only grow. Garth Schulte, from CBT Nuggets says “Data is exploding all over the IT scene and reshaping how we think about storing and analyzing large volumes of data. Companies are realizing they can mine valuable business intelligence to improve decision making and gain the competitive advantage.”
Systems Analyst – From science to healthcare to banking and finance, Systems Analysts are needed in various industries. With a median salary of $96,000 (Salary.com), the need for these employees in not going away anytime soon. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 24.5% employment growth for computer system analysts from now until 2022, faster than the average of all occupations.
Database Administrator – Database Administrators (or DBAs) are one of the hardest roles to fill right now in IT. A talented DBA can expect to find a job relatively easily in today’s market and make around $87,000. Shan Fowler of Benefitfocus says, “The explosion of mobile apps and big data is driving the need for data administrators and security pros who can ensure businesses and their customers are well covered.”
Web Applications Developer – As people are using mobile devices to access both business and consumer information these days, the job of a Web Developer is only growing. Robert Noble from WhitePages says, “There’s blurred lines between laptops and mobile devices and tablets, and other devices like smart watches, so the demand for job roles focused around mobile computing will be popping up a lot this year.” Salary.com shows an annual median salary of a Web Developer at $78,000.
While the salary ranges we presented depend on years of experience and location in the country, it’s safe to say that certain roles in technology are very lucrative right now. While the recent trends of the IT industry are good news to consultants, the fact still remains that IT can move very quickly. The skills you have today don’t necessarily translate to the skills you’ll need in a few years.
In order to stay at the top of the pay scale, it’s important to keep your skills fresh. Kenton Scearce of ECPI University says, “(IT) Job seekers should pursue certifications. IT certifications can net candidates an additional 5-15 percent increase in salary (from various reports and data). They also make you much more marketable as a candidate, since certification standards are constantly updated to keep current with the latest technology trends.”