German IT specialists earn more than bachelor's graduates in computing – Business Insider

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Information technology is shaping our everyday lives – and not just through the increasingly far-reaching transmission of data along every step of our daily lives. IT is also shaping the job market. In virtually all industries, it increases the demand for digital skills and, of course, especially for IT professionals.
At the end of 2020, 86,000 jobs for IT professionals alone were open, according to the digital association Bitkom. “This is the second-highest figure ever measured since the Bitkom labor market study was first conducted in 2011,” says Nina Brandau, education policy officer at the digital association Bitkom.
This is driving up salaries: On average, IT professionals earn 60,500 euros, according to salary analysts at online job platform Stepstone* in their 2021 salary report, with men earning an average of 61,300 euros gross per year, more than women (56,000 euros).
According to Bitkom, six out of ten companies (60 percent) expect the shortage of IT specialists to worsen in the coming years. “Corona has given digitization in Germany a boost and thus created more jobs for IT professionals across industries in the long term,” says Brandau.
Yet it is by no means the case that the IT industry requires a degree in computer science, Stepstone’s salary report shows. The paths into the industry are diverse. Most IT specialists in the industry have degrees in computer science and mathematics (29 percent), engineering (22 percent), business information systems (20 percent), and business administration, economics, and business studies (11 percent).
In the future, IT specialists will remain in demand in all areas, says Brandau. The economy is currently driven primarily by the topics of artificial intelligence and Big Data, he adds. “The job profiles of Data Scientist and Big Data Analyst will therefore gain in importance,” says the Bitkom expert. Programmers and IT administrators are most in-demand, according to Bitkom. Corona is fueling the demand.
“Especially in the area of software development, there will continue to be a high demand, as the Corona crisis has brought forth many new digital tools that need to be built and further developed,” Brandau says. Software developers earn an average of 55,900 euros annually.
Jobs as solution architects are still in particularly high demand. The specialists who develop software architectures for business-critical applications earn an average of 82,400 euros per year. IT security positions are also lucrative. Here, there are average earnings of 70,700 euros per year.
SAP specialists, who are equally proficient in various IT applications and the popular SAP software for managing business processes, earn an average of just under €68,000 per year.
The position of Scrum Master in IT, a position in agile software development, is also popular. Scrum masters earn an average of 62,300 euros annually, while IT consultants earn an average annual salary of just under 59,900 euros. UX designers, specialists in user-friendly design of digital products, earn 47,200 euros per year.
With a completed apprenticeship, IT workers earn an average of 49,400 euros gross per year. A bachelor’s degree in the IT sector brings in around 56,000 euros a year. With the training degrees of Fachwirt and Meister, employees in the IT sector earn an even higher annual salary: 60,800 euros on average. Fifty-seven percent of all master craftsmen and specialists have more than 11 years of professional experience, compared to only 16 percent of specialists with a bachelor’s degree, the Stepstone salary analysts determined.
“Often, master craftsmen and specialists have been working in a company for longer than bachelor graduates, some of whom have just come out of university and entered the job,” says StepStone salary expert André Schaefer. Master craftsmen and specialists are active in the IT sector, for example, as team leaders in IT (annual gross salary on average: 70,600 euros), as IT project managers (62,500 euros), or in IT system administration (51,700 euros).
“In general, the more professional experience, the higher the salaries,” says Schaefer. In the IT industry, this means annual earnings of 41,400 euros on average for entry-level employees with less than one year of professional experience. Up to 2 years of experience brings 44,400 euros, 3-5 years in the profession 51,400 euros. After that, wages increase more significantly: after 6-10 years, IT workers reach an annual salary of 60,300 euros on average, 11-25 years on the job means an average of 71,900 euros in annual earnings. And those who have been on the job for more than 25 years earn just under 80,000 euros a year.
IT specialists with master’s degrees earn an average of 61,800 euros a year. Among those with mostly professional experience and diploma degrees, average annual salaries with a university of applied sciences diploma (75,900 euros) in IT exceed those of employees with a university diploma (75,600 euros). At the top are IT experts with a doctorate, with an average annual salary of around 81,600 euros.
The industry that pays IT experts the best is banks: They offer them an average annual salary of 71,300 euros. This is followed immediately by the chemical and petroleum processing industry, which pays IT specialists 70,800 euros per year. In the vehicle construction and supplier industry, there is an average salary of 70,000 euros, and in the consumer goods industry, there are still salaries of 68,800 euros per year. This is followed by the pharmaceutical industry with an average annual salary of 68,400 euros and the aerospace industry (68,100 euros).
As is the case almost everywhere in the economy, large companies pay their IT specialists higher salaries. They often operate internationally. Companies with more than 10,000 employees pay an average annual salary of 74,900 euros. In companies with 1000-5000 employees, the figure is 65,000 euros.
In companies with 500-1000 employees, IT specialists receive 60,800 euros, and with 11-50 employees, it is still 51,500 euros per year. 47,800 euros are paid in companies with 1-10 employees.
Where you have to move to get the best-paid IT jobs? In terms of federal states, Hesse (annual earnings: 65,800 euros on average), Bavaria (63,300 euros), Baden-Württemberg (63,200 euros), Hamburg (61,900 euros), North Rhine-Westphalia (59,600 euros) or Bremen (58,600 euros) would come into question.
Among the cities, Frankfurt with an annual gross salary of 69,900 euros, Munich (69,000 euros), Stuttgart (68,500 euros), Heilbronn (67,300 euros), and Erlangen (66,800 euros) are at the top of the list for IT specialists. In Essen, at the bottom of the top 10, IT specialists still earn a salary of 63,500 euros a year. As always, it’s the mix of private life, job, general conditions, and region that makes the difference.
* Stepstone, like Business Insider, belongs to Axel Springer SE.
This post originally appeared on Business Insider Deutschland and has been translated from German.
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