Are you getting what you are paying for?

CIOs have asked and we shall answer.

A recently conducted survey of Canadian CIOs and IT professionals will soon provide insights into skills, salaries, hiring, retention and other issues facing the IT profession. Dubbed IT Salary Survey 2006 for IT professionals, the poll probed the opinions of about 3,000 respondents from various IT fields across the country. We expect results to be available in our May issue.

The survey digs deeper into the issue of the IT skills shortage, which has been affecting the IT industry not only in Canada but around the world, said Andrew White, president and group publisher of IT World Canada, which is spearheading the salary survey. CIO Canada is part of the firm’s stable of leading IT publications.

“CIOs want information to help them find and retain the right kind of people,” said White. The salary survey can also be a tool for CIOs when developing business plans to “cost-justify” to their executives the salary they should be paying for the skills that they need, he added.

What sets this study apart from other salary surveys in the market, said White, is its focus on the issues that confront the people working in the IT industry. Canadian salary surveys either come from recruitment firms or are focused on information provided by human resources (HR) managers, he said. “None of those surveys really address the issue of what people in IT jobs really feel.”

According to Sue Schroeter, an independent marketing and communications strategist who is managing the project, the survey will provide CIOs, IT professionals and HR managers first-hand Canadian information about such things as:

• current trends in salaries for various IT skills,

• what kind of organizations IT personnel are looking to work for,

• what keeps IT workers satisfied and what causes them to look for other jobs,

• what companies can do to attract and retain the skills they need,

• what types of skills are getting the most compensation.

Information on major demographic indicators, such as size of company, geographic region, and industry will be included in the findings, along with other factors that may influence salaries, such as years of experience, age or gender, said Schroeter.

“IT professionals will be able to compare their salary to the average salary of all respondents in specific job categories,” she added.

Survey results will also prove beneficial to CIOs and HR managers by providing information on what keeps their employees happy with the company they work for, White said he hoped that there will be interest from these managers in terms of what they need to do to retain their staff, beyond just money.

The survey will also be a useful tool for educational institutions in their bid to actively encourage more enrolment in IT, by providing information about the various types of positions available in the industry and the kind of skills that companies consider valuable, said White.

“At the end of the day, our job as an unbiased communications company is to keep the industry thriving,” he said.

White added the survey is merely “the tip of the iceberg” of what is intended to be a bigger program to provide the IT community with more tools and valuable information, the ultimate goal of which is overcoming the problem of the IT skills shortage.

CIO Canada urges readers to provide feedback about the issues covered by the survey. Comments and suggestions can be e-mailed to Editor David Carey at

Highlights of the survey findings will be published in all of IT World Canada’s print publications (CIO Canada, Computerworld Canada, Network World Canada, CIO Government Review) and online at and

QuickLink: 062488

–Mari-Len De Guzman a senior writer for IT World Canada.

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