At Emmbr, we believe in the power of informed decisions. In today's rapidly evolving technology landscape, having access to accurate and up-to-date data is crucial for attracting, retaining, and nurturing top talent. With a commitment to empowering both our clients and candidates, we are excited to present our updated Salary Review.
In the fast-paced fields of Technology Engineering, staying competitive and staying ahead of the curve is a constant challenge. Since 2020, salaries have been increasing at a significant rate but with market conditions changing, you need to stay updated.
SEEK has reported a 33.8% decrease in advertisements in the IT industry in the last 12 months. They have also reported a small increase (0.7%) in applicants per job. This has changed the landscape for many areas and had some effect on salaries.
This survey consists of the data collected from hundreds of candidates in the Australian market and gives an overview of the Software Development & QA, Infrastructure & Cloud, Cyber Security, Architecture, and Data & Analytics markets.
Our goal is simple: to provide you with accurate and insightful information that assists you in making strategic decisions related to talent acquisition and management.
Software Development & Testing
Following COVID, permanent and contractor rates skyrocketed over the last 2 years due to the lack of supply and increased demand. This has stabilised in 2023 and we're seeing some contractors start to reduce their expectations and there is more flexibility for candidates to move roles for similar salaries on permanent positions. This is largely due to a decrease in hiring and an increase in candidate competition.
Although permanent roles haven't continued to rise, they also haven't decreased. We expect them to stay stable throughout FY23/24 and in line with the figures quoted below. It has become more common for employers to negotiate lower offers and we're seeing far higher rates of acceptance when this occurs when compared to the last 2 years.
Roles in the Testing/QA market have now become very competitive for candidates and this has also led contractor rates to fall slightly. Permanent salaries have remained stable and we don't expect them to rise during FY24.
At the senior level of the market, candidates have had fewer options over the last 6 months and again, this has made them more negotiable on salary expectations.
Data & Analytics
The Data Analytics Market in Australia is predicted to grow by 20% continuously until 2025. We know that data is essential to business. It’s driving new AI-powered opportunities, greater productivity, and entire new industries. Most businesses are looking to embrace the potential generative AI brings to the table, improve efficiency, and redefine what’s possible with data.
The market has stabilised since the COVID boom and returning to a more traditional market with fewer roles advertised and higher competition between candidates. This is great for the employer as they have the ability to interview multiple candidates with a more robust and intimate process without fearing as many external offers for one candidate. The two highest areas of need across data seem to be very focused on BI and data engineering.
Based on recent insights from candidates, the main motivations regarding job moves have changed from long-term security and flexibility to increased remuneration. This is a result of increased interest rates, the cost of living and uncertainty in the Australian economy. Candidates want to make sure they have financial security during unknown times, and this has been one of the main factors in job moves.
Infrastructure & Cloud
Over the last 24 months, there has been a noticeable increase in Infrastructure & Cloud salaries across the board. This has, however, begun to plateau over the past 6 months or so for permanent salaries, and with decreased opportunities for contractors across both Infrastructure and Cloud, some are reducing their expectations.
As candidates have recognised the market levelling in regard to salaries, learning and development opportunities are often key motivators when changing organisations. Candidates are now more willing to forgo a salary increase to be able to join an organisation which can aid or fast-track career development.
With public cloud spending up approx. 20% across Australia in 2023 compared to 2022, Engineers with particular strength across AWS and Azure continue to demand the highest salaries, due to the continued demand for this skillset.
The market saw an increase in the number of Architects actively looking for a new role. The majority of active candidates we have worked with recently were still employed. The feedback on their motivations for considering new opportunities was due to the following reasons:
- Shorter contract extensions, compared to previous years, are causing stress for contractors. As businesses face budget restrictions, extensions have shifted from 6-12 months to month-to-month or 3-month rolling contracts. As a result, contractors with terms ending in January have already begun their hunt.
- As the cost of living rises, permanent applicants are looking for a pay increase.
- As more and more businesses are mandating employees to return to the office, a small group of Architects is considering remote work only. We found that most candidates are open to working in the office 2-3 days a week, and roles with 5 days in the office are still harder to fill.
According to recent market data, candidates are responding to job advertisements at a higher rate than in previous years. Hiring Managers are rigorously examining as many profiles as possible before moving on to the interview stages to avoid missing out on top talent. Also, Candidates are being evaluated more rigorously in terms of their abilities, cultural fit, and motivations.
Although a sensible strategy from the standpoint of an employer, it has an impact on candidates' experience. Candidates are currently tolerant; the real question is how this will damage the Employer Brand once the market stabilises.
Cyber Security & IT Security Risk
Despite a slow cyber security market in Q3 & Q4 23, driven by businesses' uncertainty about their budgets and the state of the economy, the appetite to hire new talent increased over Q1 24 and now cautiously climbs further. Overall, more candidates are actively seeking a new challenge, however, standout professionals were less inclined to move roles. Contingent work has seen an increase in the past 6 months, now shifting back to focus on permanent recruitment. We gathered insights from our security and risk network on their current drivers:
- 35% of Security leaders can consider a new role or are open to work, due to a lack of board support, stress, recalibrating the career and an unsatisfactory salary. For context, a job ad for a Head of Security position attracts on average 4-8 candidates worth shortlisting for review. In comparison, ads for specialised analyst/engineering roles may attract 1-2 candidates worth reviewing. Proactive headhunting, and aiming to cover every profile in the market and network are key at this stage.
- Security professionals are open to hybrid working (1-3 days) when employed on a permanent basis. In contrast, strong security contractors see the option of working fully remotely, only coming to the office occasionally, as the key decision-making driver.
Analysing the current cyber security job market, GRC roles declined by 11%, Engineering roles grew by 16%, and Security Operations grew by 17%. An overarching topic over the past 12 months has been data security looking at anyone who deals with personal information (which data, why and how it's secured). Speaking to clients and looking at recent placements, businesses show interest in recruiting roles in data protection, security and identity access management.
Technology Engineering Team
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