2021 tech salaries in Australia

The highest and lowest paying IT jobs across four capital cities in Australia are revealed with data from job placements.

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Recruitment agency Robert Half has released its 2021 salary guide for Australia, which is based on hiring trends and salary benchmarks the recruiter has seen while placing professionals. A concurrent study of 100 CIOs also provides an overview of the year ahead for IT professionals.

The study found that 82% of CIOs are concerned about losing their top tech talent due to the impact of COVID-19. In response, 73% of businesses plan to extend salary increases to their existing tech employees. Most CIOs (69%) are also willing to increase their initial salary offering to secure in-demand IT professionals.

But that’s not so easy. “Remuneration has always been a key driver to attract and retain IT professionals. However, while there is a willingness to offer salary increases—particularly to top performers—not every company is positioned to engage in a bidding war as they recover from months of uncertainty,” said David Jones, senior managing director for Asia-Pacific. “Companies should therefore complement remuneration with alternative employee benefits to help differentiate themselves from their competitors. Non-financial benefits such as supporting work-life balance, working flexibility, including a mix of remote and in-office hours, and career development are just some of the non-financial benefits likely to add value to employees in 2021.”

According to the study, Australian companies are concerned about finding the right IT talent, with more than half of CIOs saying it is more challenging to find qualified IT employees compared to before the pandemic, raising the dual challenges of attraction and retention in the technology sector.

The study found that healthcare and not-for-profit industries have started to hire more IT staff. Long-term strategies for investing in tech are creating strong demand for specialist skills such as IT security, IT management, and business transformation.

The most difficult skills to find in candidates, Robert Half found, are IT security (36%), IT management (33%), business transformation (30%), development or design (28%), and business intelligence (27%).

IT wages in Brisbane

In Brisbane, the highest paying roles for those with considerable experience include enterprise architect, data scientist, and IT security manager, all paying up to $200,000 a year. Starting a career in those areas also pays well compared to other roles, at $130,000.

Other areas where a starting wage begins at $120,00 include infrastructure architect, solutions architect, business intelligence manager, and cybersecurity specialist.

Despite the need for developers—full-stack, back-end, and front-end—the wages are considerably low for those starting as juniors but also don’t get much higher than $140 a year for a highly experienced developer.

CIOs and CISOs can get as much as $280,000 and $260,000 respectively.

IT wages in Melbourne

An enterprise architect in Melbourne will get between $150,000 and $220,000 depending on the experience. Unlike Brisbane, a data scientist in Melbourne gets paid considerably less than an enterprise architect, with wages ranging between $120,000 and $165,000 a year depending on the professional’s experience.

A developer’s salary will go no higher than $155,00 for an experienced one in Melbourne, according to Robert Half’s guide.

CIOs and CISOs can get as much as $380,000 and $300,000, respectively.

IT wages in Perth

In Perth, an experienced enterprise architect can get as much as $220,000 while a CISO will get as much as $200,000.

Developers in the beginning of their careers in Perth will have a start salary of between $60,000 and $65,000. But, as in Brisbane, wages for experienced ones won’t get any higher than $140,000.

CIO wages in Perth will go as high as $260,000 a year.

IT wages in Sydney

In Sydney, an experienced enterprise architect can get $240,000. There was no data for the role of data scientist as the recruiter based the guide on roles where they have placed professionals and there were not enough of those in Sydney to provide an accurate range. Data scientists are in high demand, according to several previous local studies.

For those starting a career in IT, the highest paying jobs are enterprise architect ($180,000), solutions architect ($160,000), development manager ($160,000), and data architect ($150,000).

Robert Half’s research found that the top permanent and contract role is help desk support officer, which is also the lowest paying job in IT in Sydney, with wages varying from $55,000 to $70,000 per year.

Management roles such as IT director, CIO, or CISO pay the highest, with CIOs and CTOs in Sydney making up to $350,000.

The top permanent roles

The study found the top permanent roles across these cities are help desk support officer, systems engineer, security engineer, cloud engineer, and developer.

Despite being No. 1, the wages of help desk support officer are the lowest of all, this is often considered an entry-level job in IT. Highest yearly gross wages won’t go higher than $80,000 for those more experienced professionals.


Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.

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