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Employers bumping up pay packets to lure good IT workers

Sydney, Australia, Canberra, Google, Atlassian, Apple, Microsoft

Tech

Employers bumping up pay packets to lure good IT workers

While there is increasing demand for good IT workers throughout the world, companies are willing to pay top dollar as skills shortages and high-labor demand continue to push salaries up.

According to recruitment company Hays, just over three-quarters or 76 percent of Australian employers have offered higher salaries than planned in order to find and retain talent.

Nick Deligiannis, managing director of Hays Australia, told reporters, workers were showing a high intention to move jobs in a market where the next big salary packet could be just over the horizon.

“[This] suggests that staff engagement, offering purposeful work and training managers to develop stronger relationships with their teams could help retain employees”, he said.

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“Fueled by a revision of what’s important to them, flexible work, a lack of movement during the uncertainty of COVID-19 and years of salary stability, employees are reconsidering what they want from work”.

Given a whopping 91 per cent of employers said they are facing a skills shortage – coupled with a soaring cost of living – it’s no surprise that Australian IT workers can easily find salaries in the mid six-figures.

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A senior .NET/Java developer in Sydney, for example, can expect a salary between Aus$120,000 and Aus$170,000 a year before superannuation.

A network admin in Melbourne is looking at an average of around Aus$130,000 per year, roughly the same as can be expected by a business analyst in one of Australia’s biggest cities.

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The role of business analyst was identified by Hays as the country’s most needed within the technology category, just ahead of cloud engineers (Aus$160,000 in Sydney), full stack developers (Aus$160,000 in Canberra), and cyber security analysts (Aus$145,000 in Melbourne).

Massive salaries for IT workers in the US

Overseas, the raw salary numbers show just how much money US workers at big tech companies can rake in.

The Wall Street Journal collated the median salary of the S&P 500 companies from 2021 and, surprise, surprise – big tech is right at the top of the list.

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Workers at Alphabet, Google’s parent company, had a median compensation of around US$295,884 last year.

Facebook came in second with an annual median average of US$292,785 for workers.

Figures from salary data aggregator site levels[dot]fyi provide a breakdown of these salaries – which include generous stock offerings – and how they compare with Australian tech companies.

An entry level software engineer at Google, for example, is looking at an average of around US$190,000 a year, including bonus and stock offerings.

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As Googlers climb up the ranks, according to levels[dot]fyi data, the more they are compensated with company stock that pushes their pay packets up.

Principal engineers at Google are looking at a salary package of around $1.5 million ($US1.05 million) – but more than half of that total is provided by yearly stock vesting.

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A principal engineer at Atlassian, for sake of comparison, can see a salary of around US$382,000 – only marginally higher than a senior software engineer at Google – because of less stock being offered.

Apple, Google, and Microsoft offer passwordless service

Apple, Google, and Microsoft now offer passwordless options to millions of consumers – and those users will now ask for this from other service providers.

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Many alternative approaches to passwordless authentication are available: magic links emailed to users, (but email isn’t secure), one-time-passcodes sent to WhatsApp for re-entry (but it’s clumsy), or hardened security tokens for local applications and network access (but requires extensive IT management).

Each approach requires installing and configuring client software on the user’s device.

This is where Apple, Google and Microsoft hold the advantage to their own services, embedding this capability into their respective operating systems on user devices.

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During the recent ‘World Password Day’, Microsoft, Apple and Google announced their support for FIDO2, the emerging industry standard for passwordless authentication.

In fact, they have all been party to the FIDO2 Alliance for a long time, so this was completely expected.

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While your phone unlocks when it recognizes your face, or your laptop opens when it reads your fingerprint, this local device authentication cannot be used to verify your access to other external services.

Every application service provider controls their own authentication.

Whether you’re accessing your bank, booking a medical procedure, or updating a personal student record, each service provider has Zero Trust that it is you using your Google, Facebook or Twitter account.

Zero Trust is becoming a foundation stone in cyber security.

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Priyanka Choudhury, Assistant Editor of Blitz writes on local, regional and international issues.

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