SOA Skills Add 37% Premium to Salaries, Survey Shows

Employers willing to pay premiums for SOA, SAP, JBoss, and WebLogic skills
Written by Joe McKendrick, Contributing Writer

A new salary survey by career site Dice.com confirms that employers place a premium on SOA-related skillsets. Their latest survey of 19,000 IT professionals puts the average rate for IT positions involving service-orientation work at $107,827 a year. This is 37% over the average for all the IT positions covered – $78,845.

SOA second highest-paid skills in latest survey

SOA skills are the second-highest paid skills found in the survey. Leading the pack were professionals versed in ABAP- Advanced Business Application Programming ($115,916).

Applications server skills JBoss and WebLogic joined the $100,000 salary ranks with annual salaries topping $101,869 and $100,313, respectively.

I spoke with Tom Silver, Senior Vice President, North America at Dice about the results. This is the first year they've measured the impact of SOA skills on IT jobs, so historical comparisons were not available. He noted that SOA was a part of many job classifications, from security engineer to development engineers to IT managers.

He also observes that jobs calling for SOA skills is a relatively small but growing sector of the IT world. “The number of jobs that are looking for SOA skills is still relatively small – we have about 2,100 jobs on the site right now that call for SOA skills,” he points out.  “That's 2,100 out of roughly 50,000, so gives you an idea as far as the percentage of jobs, which is still relatively small, four percent or so. But this number is up eight percent versus a year ago. The overall number of tech jobs on Dice for the same period year over year is down about 12%.”

The number of jobs calling for cloud skills is even smaller, about 300 openings at this time. “It didn't pop to the top of our top 10 list, which is a little bit surprising for us,” he says.

Silver also has a word of caution for IT employers – the economy is beginning to expand again, and there's a great deal of disenchantment among the IT ranks. “Not surprisingly, coming off of a year like we just came off of, where many tech professionals were asked to do a lot more with a lot less. They're not happy about it. And dissatisfaction overall with their jobs has gone up."

As a result, Silver says, "as the job market starts to improve, those that have particularly in-demand skillsets –  like SOA – are going to be looking around. There's a real good chance as the market opens up, those that have those kinds of skills will walk."

"Employers really pushed their people in the last two years. We're warning employers now that retention will become one of the biggest issues in terms of making sure they have required tech professionals they need in order to meet their goals. Retention will become a much much bigger issue going forward.”

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