Pay rates for interim IT bosses rocket

IT departments are bringing in increasing numbers of freelance IT chiefs to keep project costs under control, at the expense of permanent jobs

Demand for interim IT directors is rocketing as organisations kick-start new IT projects, pushing up pay rates by 34 per cent over the past year to £80 per hour.

According to the Association of Technology Staffing Companies (ATSCo), IT departments are coming under growing pressure to contain the runaway cost of tech projects by reducing permanent staffing costs.

ATSCo chief executive Ann Swain said that while in the past the IT director would have been a full-time employee, this is now changing as IT departments start to be much more aggressive about controlling the costs of their most senior staff.

She said that because the work of IT departments tends to be project-led, with each stage of an IT project requiring different skills, interim staff can be a useful tool and the use of them is becoming more widespread.

Using freelance IT bosses may also allow companies to access the skills and experience they would otherwise have to buy at even higher rates from blue chip management consultancy firms.

Temporary IT chiefs are also being brought in as troubleshooters to turn around failing IT projects or take over outsourced projects that have been brought back in-house, ATSCo said.

Swain said in a statement: "Organisations are looking for the most cost-effective way to rebuild skills and systems that were hollowed out in the outsourcing process."