Steer yourself to career success

The good news is that the IT jobs market is in good shape, as demonstrated by the results of the latest Computer Weekly/SSL salary survey. But for the individual IT professional it is certainly not a case of "summertime and the living is easy".

The good news is that the IT jobs market is in good shape, as demonstrated by the results of the latest Computer Weekly/SSL salary survey. But for the individual IT professional it is certainly not a case of "summertime and the living is easy".

Pay rises are in evidence but, as a leading recruitment expert points out, companies are tending to make rises on individual merit rather than across the board. That adds further weight to the argument that IT professionals should broaden their expertise into effective communications and relationship skills, along with a hefty dose of business savvy.

The rewards for building such a portfolio of broader skills alongside one's technical expertise and experience are clearly visible at the highest levels of IT management.

According to the survey the average salary for an IT director is nearly £100,000, having risen by nearly 10% over the same quarter for the previous year.

And, of course, the most highly paid IT directors are getting even more. No one earns that kind of money for shaving a bit off equipment and service costs - they are clearly respected colleagues, valued for their strategic contribution to the business.

At the more technical level, this also no time for anyone to rest on their laurels. The skills topography of the IT jobs market may not be undergoing seismic shifts, but it is certainly ever changing. This means individuals, rather than their employers, need to take the responsibility for ensuring they stay ahead of the curve in developing their existing skills and acquiring new ones. Our salary survey offers a heads-up about which way the wind is blowing.

All in all, the message is clear - opportunities are there but those who profit by them will be those who are proactive. They will make their own moves, certainly in terms of skills and sometimes geographically.

We live in interesting times. It is up to us to make sure they are personally rewarding, both financially and professionally.


 

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