IT salaries slump

A growing number of IT professionals are earning lower salaries, while the proportion in the top brackets is declining — but consultants, at least, are doing well for themselves

IT workers are bringing home lower average salaries than in 2005.

According to the 2006 Skills Survey, commissioned by ZDNet UK sister site, the percentage of IT workers earning less than £40,000 has grown to 56 percent from 44 percent in 2005 — with a sizable increase of 8 percentage points in the "below £25,000" range.

At the same time, fewer are earning the higher salaries. The proportion making £40,001 to £70,000 dropped 6 percentage points from last year to make up a third of respondents. And 25 percent fewer claim per-annum salaries of more than £70,000 compared to 2005.

How much workers earn, of course, depends on their title.

The Skills Survey reveals, unsurprisingly, that the chief executives, CFOs and COOs are the top earners, with 20 percent of these high-fliers earning more than £110,001 and 28 percent with a salary of £70,000 to £110,000.

CIOs don't do badly for themselves either, with 22 percent in the over-£110,001 club and 26 percent in the £70,000 to £110,000 range. But that still leaves a significant portion — nearly 40 percent — who earn a more modest yearly income of between £40,001 and £70,000.

That's the salary range many IT managers claim — 45 percent, according to the Skills Survey. About a third come in one notch lower, earning £25,001 to £40,000. A fortunate 13 percent of IT managers earn big bucks of more than £70,000, with just three percent in the topmost category of more than £110,000.

IT consultants do well for themselves. Around 60 percent of respondents with that job title earn between £25,001 and £55,000 — roughly the same as IT pros and software/web developers. But significantly more IT consultants bring in top salaries of between £55,001 and £110,000 - 29 percent compared to 16 percent in the IT pro crowd.

At the same time, nearly a quarter of IT pros and software/Web developers make do with less than £25,000 compared to less than 10 percent of IT consultants in that salary range.

The results are based on responses from 1,198 individuals.