Average earnings rising – but not for infosec pros

06 March 2018

The average salary for permanent IT professionals across five key disciplines was £56,523 at the end of last year, according to the Tech Cities Job Watch Q4 2017 report from Experis.

The company, which claims to be the largest IT recruitment specialist in Europe, says the five disciplines its report focuses on are Big Data, cloud, IT security, mobile, and web development. The report found that the average for the final quarter of 2017 had grown by eight per cent since Q4 2016, and that each discipline had also witnessed an increase in pay over this period, apart from mobile which remained static. 

Experis says average salaries for permanent security professionals increased by four per cent year-on-year to stand at £60,004 for Q417. But the firm notes that this is still much lower than the average salary of £70,945 for Big Data specialists.

Data in the Tech Cities Job Watch report is based on ten UK cities that are said to be rapidly developing as technology cluster hubs: London, Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle. London continued to be the highest paying city offering an average salary of £65,179 and also saw a year-on-year growth of four per cent.

However, the news is not so good for contractors. Unlike the permanent market, Experis says average day rates across all the cities and disciplines fell, both year-on-year and since Q415, by seven and one per cent respectively. As a result, the average day rate offered was £419.

The company adds that day rates for security professionals have surprisingly experienced the biggest decline out of the five disciplines, offering £423 in Q417. As a result, it is now behind Big Data (£497) and Cloud (£447), ranking third as the highest paying discipline. 

Whilst London was the highest paying city for security contractors in Q415 with an average day rate of £500, that has since dropped by 13 per cent to £433. As a result, the capital is  now the third highest paying city behind Glasgow (£480) and Manchester (£475).

Experis believes this trend is the result of businesses shifting the way they manage IT security. It says organisations are increasingly hiring contractors to plug short-term skills gaps and allocating them to lower value, higher volume security tasks, instead of managing large-scale, specialist projects.