Overall compensation for IT professionals is down for the first time since the burst of the dot-com bubble, according to a 2009 Salary Survey released by IT management consulting firm Janco Associates.
The Park City, Utah-based firm reported that the mean compensation for CIOs at large enterprises is now $168,839, down 6.11% from a year earlier. In mid-size companies, the mean compensation is $163,211, down 5% from 2008 levels.
And there may be more bad news to come says Victor Janualitis, Janco chief executive, as the employment picture has only worsened since the survey was conducted.
"It's pretty grim out there," says Janualitis. "My feeling is that this is probably one of the worst IT markets since the dark days in the 1980s."
Highlights of the survey include the following:
Many companies have instituted hiring and spending freezes. This has been augmented by layoffs, outsourcing, bonus reductions, and elimination of IT contractors. The result is a lowered demand for IT professionals and downward pressure on wages.
Companies have reduced the benefits provided to IT professionals.
Flexible hours and work schedules are not as readily available.
For the second time in less than 10 years, retirements are being put off due to the downturn in the stock market.
Janualitis says the last point, the reduction in IT professionals taking retirement, is having profound impact on the industry. Not only are people working longer, but many IT professionals who retired are now looking to get back into the job market because their savings have been hammered by the drop in stock values.
"The bottom line is there is now a surplus of seasoned IT workers available and that may further impact salaries," he says.
One executive IT position that has made significant salary gains in recent years, chief security officer (CSO), hit a wall. The mean compensation for CSOs at large firms is $152,163 in 2009, slightly down from $152,563 in 2008. At mid-sized firms CSOs salaries the average is $144, 908, down 2.17% from $148,117 in 2008.
Not all CIOs will feel the pinch equally. The Janco survey noted there were 22 CIOs at publicly traded companies who earned more than $2 million in 2008. However, several of those CIOs no longer have their jobs as a result of the crisis on Wall Street.