Technical jobs pay well in general, and in Silicon Valley, they pay even better. That's one of the insights from a salary survey Dice released in January this year. Other highlights from the survey of 2015 compensation include:
Tech salaries took a big jump this year. Salaries were up 7.7 percent, making the average salary for a technical job more than $96,000. Bonuses were up along with salaries.
Six-figure salaries are common. The average tech salary is more than $100,000 in multiple metro areas. Silicon Valley topped the list, reporting an average salary of $118,243. New York was in second place, with an average salary of $106,263.
Bonuses are also common. Average bonuses are over $10,000, a 7 percent increase. Well over one-third of tech employees, 37 percent, report receiving a bonus in addition to their salary. Bonuses aren't equally distributed though; experienced workers are more likely to get bonuses than newer employees, and certain industries, including finance, telecom, and entertainment were most likely to pay bonuses.
Entry-level employees get salary increases. While bonuses aren't common for workers with only one or two years' experience, the average salary increases were actually largest for this group of workers. Dice concludes that this means there's demand for this level of experience and employers are being forced to boost salaries to attract these employees.
Salary increases don't require changing jobs. More than half – 62 percent – of survey respondents reported salary increases, with close to half coming from either a merit increase or promotion at their current employer. Despite these increases and high levels of job satisfaction reported by tech workers, 39 percent plan to change jobs this year.
Contractor rates increased. For contractors, hourly rates increased 5 percent. As with bonuses, contract rates are higher in certain industries, including industrial, professional services, and healthcare.
In-demand skills pay premium salaries. Databases, cloud, and big data skills offer the top salaries, reaching above $150,000. DevOps and automation-related skills also pay high salaries above $130,000.