IT Pro Salaries: What You Can Earn (And Why It's Still Low)

A temporary boost in business confidence saw a brief rise in some IT pro salaries in the latest Peoplebank quarterly survey, but that hasn't compensated for an ongoing surfeit of skilled people, meaning salaries in many areas are flat. Here's what is currently being paid, plus the specialisations in highest demand in each state.

IT workers picture from Shutterstock

The announcement of Peoplebank's latest quarterly ICT Salary Survey results leads with a slight (and temporary) boost in hiring in some areas following the federal election, but to our eyes the more significant detail is in the long-term trends. Peoplebank CEO Peter Acheson pointed out that in many specialities, salaries are relatively low. "Employers currently have the luxury of being able to appoint highly skilled candidates at moderate remuneration rates," he said.

In the table below, we've listed the typical annual base salaries paid for selected permanent roles in six capital cities as of October 2012. A junior position requires less than three years of experience; intermediate is three to five years; senior is longer than that.

As ever, roles actively managed by a recruiter are likely to attract higher salaries than if you're applying directly to a company, so bear that in mind. A gap indicates there weren't queries in that field for that city.

Role Sydney Melbourne ACT Adelaide Perth Brisbane
Junior .NET Developer $70,000 $55,000 $65,000 $50,000 $65,000 $54,500
Junior Server Engineer $75,000 $70,000 $65,000 - $70,000 -
Junior Web Designer $55,000 $60,000 $50,000 $55,000 - $54,500
Junior Oracle DBA $80,000 $80,000 $70,000 $70,000 $65,000 $59,000
Int. Help Desk Manager $90,000 $80,000 $85,000 $95,000 $75,000 $81,500
Senior Security Engineer $130,000 $130,000 $130,000 $120,000 $110,000 -
Senior Web Master $100,000 $100,000 $90,000 $100,000 - $86,000
Senior Business Analyst $130,000 $130,000 $115,000 $130,000 $130,000 $104,500
Senior IT Manager $180,000 $150,000 $120,000 $150,000 $170,000 $104,500
Senior CIO/IT Director $350,000 $300,000 $205,000 $250,000 $250,000 $180,500

According to Peoplebank, these are the areas with strongest demand in each state. Business analysts appear to be the only area consistently sought across much of the country:

NSW: Business analysts, Ruby on Rails

Victoria: Cloud, security, solutions architects

ACT: Project management

Queensland: No standout areas

SA: Business analysts, programming

WA: Business analysts, SharePoint



    right, 5 years in a developer role and my salary is no where near those figures.

    they must have had a minimum amount to be included these stats

      Your sample size is a little bit smaller than theirs.

    guarantee tasmania's average is well below those figures, not that it ever shows up in these things

    agree jjd, these figures are way off....either that or we need new jobs lawl


      haha too right :) they do seem wonderfully high numbers though why does the title say it's low :/

    Ooookay, so what should we get if we are 'multi-hatted' and have a role of almost all these?
    I bet it's not a percent of each one based fairly upon how long each takes to complete each time a problem is thrown at ya! Or the fact that typically you have to be across each darn principal at a moments notice! - problem.....time to take more tablets.....*stands down from soapbox*

    Baahahaaaa, yeah right. Are you serious? I've been doing network management for multiple small businesses for 9 years & I'm still yet to earn more than 44k.

    about 30k more than what i get. Seems legit

    question, with the survey do the people that take in the results validate them before publishing them?

    While these are seemingly high and out of synch with reality (seems like an advertising campaign by Peoplesoft to attract more people), there is some truth behind this when seen in context of Universities and Government offices. Private businesses and companies might not pay these salaries, Unis and Govt. offices have set slabs and over the years the person keeps getting promoted, so a clerk that started at HEW level 4 might now still be the clerk managing the same duties but might be getting the salary of HEW Level 6 as they got promoted (not in designation, but in the salary bracket) and when they leave, that position though a HEW level 4 is now automatically a HEW Level 6 position.

    The injury after this insult is that all the HEW levels and classifications are paid for by the taz payers money, which means that while the rest battle it out at 40-60K a year paying taxes, the new recruits in govt. and uni get a lush plump start.

    I've been in consulting too long. I thought these looked quite low (Melbourne at any rate)

    These figures worry me a little. I'm a public servant who contracted for many years to the same Government department in the same role. As a public servant, I now earn close to what the above-mentioned Help Desk Manager earns (close to $90k) for a job WELL below that level of responsibility.

    This is why government jobs are sneaky - I'm used to my...comfortable...government salary (and have been for some years); when I inevitably have to search for another position after my project shuts down, I'll have to take a $30,000 pay cut (at minimum) to continue doing the same kind of work in private sector.

    I know this all looks very First World Problems, but anyone else in a government job will tell you exactly the same thing. It's far too easy to be promoted to a well-paying position in public service; it's leaving the service and moving back into the private sector that's the hard part.

      As a tax payer, obviously i'm happy to hear your complaints. There there mate, it will be ok, here take some of my tax dollars.

    A lot of comments criticizing the pay rates. Look at whose data it is. Peoplebank don't get to make money unless you quit your role and look for a new one. If you do they might put you in a new job and make a commission and ALSO fill your old job for a second commission.

    There's a distinct motive at work here, and I'd probably reject these figures out of hand on that basis.

    "As ever, roles actively managed by a recruiter are likely to attract higher salaries than if you’re applying directly to a company"

    odd that peoplebank would say that...

    [Insert comment here about how these figures obviously all seem low to me because I obviously make $450,000 a year like every poster above]


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