Which IT pros earn the most?

Some IT pros saw their salaries rise last year, while others weren’t as fortunate. The primary difference between those two groups?

The industries in which they work.

The change in average IT salary over the past year varied a good amount, depending solely on industry, according to ComputerWorld’s 2011 Salary Survey.

On the positive end, the top industries for IT raises were:

  1. Business services/consulting (an average increase of 2.8%)
  2. Hospitality/travel (2.7%)
  3. Transportation/logistics (2.7%)
  4. Non-computer manufacturing (2.6%),  and
  5. Defense/aerospace (2.1%).

On the other side of the spectrum, IT workers in the computer dealer/reseller saw their pay drop by 3.7%.

Mixed news for managers

While that’s good news for people working in the industries with the biggest increases, it can also spell trouble for IT managers in all areas.

Top employees in lower-paying industries may jump ship to greener pastures, while companies in other lines of work may have trouble keeping up with the raises their competitors are offering.

Managers should take stock of who their most valuable employees are and think of ways to boost their job satisfaction without money — for example, offering more flexibility, allowing telecommuting, or varying their responsibilities to prevent burnout.