Retaining IT talent is tougher than ever: Software engineer pay is up across US, report finds

Andrea Park -

In an effort to compete with tech giants in Silicon Valley, employers elsewhere have increased salaries for software engineers, a new report finds, building even more competition for organizations looking to hire and retain IT talent outside of major tech hubs.

Average salaries for software engineers in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2019 rose approximately 6 percent from the previous year, up to $155,000-165,000, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing the report. Outside of Silicon Valley, however, those roles are seeing even larger growth.

"Cities like Austin, Toronto and Boston are now coming into their own, attracting technology companies and their talent needs," Martha Heller, CEO of tech recruiting firm Heller Search Associates, told WSJ. And as this demand for tech talent increases, so too do workers' abilities to demand higher salaries.

The competition outside of Silicon Valley and other tech hubs is not limited to smaller tech firms — Google and Twitter recently shared plans to build new outposts and recruit IT experts across the U.S., WSJ reports, with Google slated to open offices in Nebraska, Nevada and Oklahoma, for example.

On top of rising salaries for software engineers, this spread across the country will undoubtedly make it even more difficult for smaller and less tech-oriented organizations to attract top talent, including in healthcare, where IT teams have become increasingly crucial for success and sustainability.

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