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Job satisfaction takes a dive in salary survey

Find out how your wages and morale compare to your peers based on the results of's latest salary survey.

Have a college degree, at least five years of experience in IT and a West Coast address? If so, your annual wage should be among the highest in the United States for IT professionals.

Those are some of the findings in's latest salary survey, which includes data collected from more than 700 IT professionals working in enterprise Windows environments.

In the survey,

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which covered 26 IT job titles, members reported, on average, an annual salary of $59,111. Project managers fared the best, at $71,071. But Windows IT security administrators also reaped monetary rewards: average salaries of $65,000 and $62,833, were reported, respectively, for the security titles of manager and specialist.

In the survey, which covered 26 IT job titles, members had an average annual salary of $59,111. Project managers fared the best, with an average salary of $71,071.

Those numbers apparently aren't making IT pros jump for joy, however. Forty-five percent of the respondents said their job satisfaction has decreased in the past year.

Nor are the salaries of Windows professionals on par with the overall IT marketplace, according to the survey. Results from nearly 2,500 members of TechTarget's network of IT-focused sites rated Internet architect -- at an average salary of $84,100 -- as the highest paying job in IT.

Other findings in the survey include:

Salary by most common job titles:

  • $71,071 -- Project manager/team leader
  • $68,304 -- DBA
  • $65,000 -- Security manager
  • $63,314 -- IS manager
  • $62,833 -- Security specialist
  • $56,533 -- Systems administrator
  • $51,602 -- Network administrator
  • $48,577 -- Tech support staff

Salary by region:

  • $64,264 -- Pacific
  • $63,452 -- Mid-Atlantic
  • $60,614 -- Southwest
  • $60,049 -- New England
  • $60,286 -- Northwest
  • $58,694 -- Southeast
  • $58,596 -- Midwest
  • $54,737 -- Mountain

Job satisfaction:

Figures on morale in this year's survey indicated a troubling trend in IT. While nearly 20% of respondents reported that their job satisfaction increased in the past year, 45% said their satisfaction level went down during the same period. And on a satisfaction scale of 1 to 5, 10% said they were a 5, or "not satisfied" in their work.


The average IT worker's most recent bonus was 3% of their annual salary.

Work week:

Not surprisingly, members put in their share of long hours. More than 80% work 40-50 hours a week, 11% work 51-60 hours and 1% apparently have no life outside of work, because they log more than 60 hours a week on the job.


Survey respondents with three years of job experience earned $47,731 this year; those with five years made an average of $52,957; those with 10 years made $60,286; those with 15 years made $68,809; and those with 20 years of work experience dipped back down to $67,538.


  • $68,107 -- Advanced degree
  • $62,864 -- Bachelor's degree
  • $56,836 -- Some college
  • $56,150 -- Associate's degree
  • $55,870 -- High school diploma

Gender gap:

The glass ceiling has been described by some as easier to crack in IT than in other industries, but it apparently still exists. The average man in IT -- among members -- earned $60,698, and the average woman earned $58,567. This year, 78% of the survey takers were men and 22% were women.

Company size:

As might be expected, this year's respondents to the salary survey came from organizations of various sizes. The most well represented were those who worked for companies with annual revenues of $10 million to $100 million (31%) and less than $10 million (24%). Just 3% worked for mega-companies that had earnings of $51 billion to $100 billion.

Editor's note: Members of may take the salary survey once during a six-month period. The results are aggregated and updated continuously. At the end of each six-month period, the survey is archived. (Read more about the salary survey's methodology.)

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