Offshoring Eats Away at IT Pay, Study Shows

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2004-01-13 Print this article Print

As IT jobs such as application development and maintenance get shipped offshore, pay for remaining, domestic IT jobs continues to slide. A recent report shows the vulnerable and secure positions.

The offshoring of IT jobs caused IT salaries to slip for the third quarter in a row, according to new research from Foote Partners LLC, a management consultancy and IT workforce research company. Some of the findings on premium pay for certifications and skills were:
  • Stand-alone applications development skills fell 8.5 percent in 2003.
  • Application development certifications lost almost 18 percent of their value of the past two years.
  • Webmaster/Internet certifications were down 22.7 percent in 2003.
  • Beginner certifications such as the MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional), CCP (Certified Computing Professional) and CompTIA A+ were down 13.6 percent.
  • Database certifications fell 9.4 percent. Foote Partners research detected the trend a year ago but refrained from reporting on it until the company could ascertain whether it was being caused by the sour economy or by offshore outsourcing, according to David Foote, president and chief research officer for the New Canaan, Conn., research firm. Foote Partners pegged offshoring as the salary-eroding culprit after interviewing executives who are offshoring, executives at the middlemen companies that are contracting with offshore companies, and those IT workers whove dealt with jobs being offshored at their companies. Storage Center Editor David Morgenstern recently wondered if offshore outsourcing was a "natural law." Click here to read more. Foote Partners has been tracking IT salaries since 1997 and, as such, can put the current IT salary and bonus-pay slide into historical perspective. "We first started noticing offshoring pressures on stateside compensation early in 2003," Foote said in a statement. "Premium bonus pay for segments of IT skills and certifications that had been performing steadily in our quarterly research began to slide noticeably. These segments coincided with many of the same employment categories that have been most susceptible to offshore outsourcing." Next page: Whats not getting offshored?

    Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

    Submit a Comment

    Loading Comments...
    Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

    Rocket Fuel