Bonuses for IT professionals have grown by between 7.9% and 9.9% over the past 12 months, an analysis of IT pay rates has revealed.
The research, by Foote Partners, found that employers were growing more concerned about staff retention as they turned their attention to using IT to improve products and services.
"Although employers remain nervous about hiring full-timers, they are investing in IT skills in a big way," said David Foote, president of Foote Partners. "The biggest change we have noticed from a year ago is that CIOs have turned their attention from regulatory compliance to once again focusing on innovation and creating new products and services."
The biggest growth area has been for applications development skills, where bonuses have risen by up to 17.6% over the year.
"Part of the increase is due to Sarbanes-Oxley compliance spending, but also from the fact that companies are insourcing applications development that might have been outsourced 18 months ago," said Foote.
Companies have "wised up" to the risks of offshore outsourcing, which is difficult to do well, the research suggested. By bringing work back in house, projects have more predictable results, even if costs increase, it said.
"In that situation, most managers will go with their best in-house applications development talent, supplemented by consultants and contractors. They are seeking out IT workers with industry and system-specific experience," said Foote.