Top 10 States for IT Professionals

Tech recruitment site recently conducted a study that ranked ten states with the largest gap between tech jobs and qualified applicants. Not surprisingly these states have higher costs of living, but they also offer higher average salaries according to data from the 2011 IT Salary and Skills Survey. The states are:

  1. California
  2. New Jersey
  3. Texas
  4. New York
  5. Massachusetts
  6. Illinois
  7. Washington
  8. Connecticut
  9. Virginia
  10. Washington, DC

The report measures the gap between the number of job openings compared to the number of IT related Associates and Bachelors degrees. These states cover key tech areas such as Silicon Valley, Seattle, Dallas, Boston, New York, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, and Chicago.

According to the 2011 IT Salary and Skills Study, only Texas and New York fall outside of the top paying states for IT workers, The table below lists the average salaries from the tech crunch states.

Average Salaries Salary Ranking
State Mean Median Mean Median Count
California $88,948 $85,000 6 6 839
Connecticut $91,367 $90,000 4 2 95
Illinois $82,233 $80,000 11 8 534
Massachusetts $85,260 $80,000 7 8 226
New Jersey $96,088 $89,250 2 4 306
New York $84,149 $79,043 8 12 452
Texas $80,337 $76,540 17 17 789
Virginia $91,301 $87,750 5 5 408
Washington $81,869 $80,000 14 8 224
Washington, DC $97,612 $92,750 1 1 98

These gaps increase the level of competition for technical talent which is one of the drivers behind higher salaries.

Do certifications in these states impact less experienced IT employees’ salaries? The general trend is yes. Certified professionals in the early stages of their careers tend to earn higher salaries than their non-certified counterparts. In states like Massachusetts, Texas, Virginia, and Illinois the salary difference is greater than five percent.

The ability to compete globally rests in part on a country’s ability to produce workers with the skills necessary to drive innovation. Although these skills can be gained as a student works their way through the educational system, hands-on technical training is viable for those who wish to develop necessary skills in order to compete in an ever changing economy dependent upon the free flow of information.

Note: The mean is the arithmetic average, whereas the median is the point where 50% of the responses are above the figure and the remainder below. Both measures are commonly used in reporting statistical data.


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