2019: A Great Year For Tech Pros Over 50 Years Old?

Over 50 and working in tech? 2019 might be a pivotal year for you.

First, some not-so-great news: The average tech salary has continued its plateau, having remained effectively unchanged since 2015. Though $93,244 is a respectable income level, it’s $84 less than the average annual tech pro salary in 2015.

But salary-wise, things only get better as you age. In the most recent Dice Salary Survey, we found those in the 36-49 age bracket earned a bit more than average: $96,894 annually. Those in the over-50 bracket, however, are earning $104,117 on average.

Those with over 15 years’ experience (and we’d think a healthy percentage of the over-50 crowd fall into this category, as well) are also having a moment. This segment earned 1.1 percent more year-over-year, only outpaced by those with far less experience (who naturally earn quite a bit less, and fall into pay brackets subject to a bit more disruption).

It’s not all good news, though. A benefit that often matters more to older tech pros, 401(k) matching, has one of the largest deltas between ‘important’ and ‘already have.’ While 82 percent of tech pros say it’s an important benefit to have, only 61 percent report actually having 401(k) matching from their employer.

We also asked respondents to the 2019 Dice Salary Survey if they planned to switch jobs in 2019. Some 45 percent said they were expecting to find a new role with a different company, with 68 percent of that group wanting to switch jobs for a better salary. This group earned $80,925 per year, on average. And 22 percent of those who anticipate finding a new job in 2019 will do so because they anticipate losing their current position; this group of respondents earned an average annual salary of $100,675.

From this, we can glean that older tech pros are earning more than average, and their experience is valued. With all the bad headlines tech companies earned in 2018, hiring seasoned pros who have a bit of foresight might just become a big deal in 2019, and could help reverse a troubling trend of longer layoffs and less pay for experienced tech pros.

18 Responses to “2019: A Great Year For Tech Pros Over 50 Years Old?”

  1. This sounds like people are being penny, nickel, dime, quartered. I’m independent, because I’m not wired for corporate America. The upside… much more $$. The downside… looking for your next engagement. It balances out perhaps more to the upside being a contractor.

    But dealing with recruiters and companies and especially offshore recruiters, takes a whole sh-t load of patience and it is deeply pathetic and very, very broken!!!

  2. Unemployed tech pro

    I am sorry, but things are not that rosy. I just watched a large Fortune 500 I.T. CIO lay off all the old and their best IT staff, replacing them with H1B visa workers.

      • I agree with your first statement, that the claims of low unemployment don’t seem consistent with felt reality. Perhaps a less xenophobic description of your perception of the cause would be more productive?

        • Vigster Dashenburne

          What’s xenophobic about it? Stating a fact is xenophobic? Who gives a rat’s where somebody comes from. That’s not the issue. The fact remains that H1Bs are coming from somewhere; it don’t matter from where.

        • yurakm

          It is not necessary xenophobic. Technology is predominately global. Demand for tech skills grows worldwide, but supply also increases. It put pressure on wages and similar like consulting fees, particularly in most expensive locations like the US.

          Competition with H1B is only one of aspects of the issue. Besides bringing IT people in the US, US firms also move development abroad, and/or create development centers abroad from the scratch. Moreover, many international and foreign companies successfully compete with US corporations.

          Only select sectors, like military / security are protected, and even they are protected only to a some extent.

  3. Unemployed IT Director

    Agreed. Everyone keeps talking about low unemployment but there seem to a ton of layoffs, jobs are not always plentiful and the hiring environment is one of the oddest I have ever seen. I am just under 50 with a strong resume (between 10-24 years experience in most things technical and management) but do not even get a response on 80% of what I send out — and I am using a very directed approach, not just shotgunning resumes all over the map.

  4. JW MONDAK

    Is the author of this article smoking some thing?
    Any one that is:
    WHITE
    OVER 50
    BORN IN USA
    IS TOAST.
    I finally got out of the industry after being telecom since 1982. The last straw was a blue badge intel idiot telling me “your too old and slow”.
    That convinced me to finally file for SS and get out.
    Glad I did.

  5. David Guardado

    In corporate America with so many company’s trying not have their financial budgets look so dismal, the trickle-down effect begins to look so good to them. So, what does a company do if the consumer does not buy or use their product/services. The companies begin to look at if this is slow down or if they are being hit financial and will it continue into their future. With worker’s in their fifty’s and there pay rate it being so high, this question must then be asked by the company. Do they stay or do they go? This is where the decision must be reach as to does a fifty-year-old needs to remain and does the position truly need to be a financial burden to the company.

    • Vigster Dashenburne

      Excuse me sir, if I may be so bold: It’s “companies” as in plural, not “company’s” as in possessive. It’s “workers” as in plural, not “worker’s” as in possessive. Same with fifties – it’s “fifties” not “fifty’s.” It’s not “there pay rate”; it’s “their pay rate.”
      I know, it’s brilliant copyediting and still I can’t get decent paid work. They all think me an arsehole.

  6. Fidelity Investments

    We offer buy outs for those over 55 in order to benefit the company, we paid them and that’s it.
    The pictures of their families were amusing and were put to good use in fooling the younger crowd that we really care, good PR for us! Now we can outsource to
    China, oh that’s a secret but can be found online, dang interweb.

  7. This is the same clap trap I see constantly, companies crying about the bottom line so they can cut budgets to the bone to piss money out to the investors at obscene levels. Upper level corporate salaries have grown to disgusting levels millionaires paying themselves multi million dollar bonuses while putting their workers out of a job or further stagnate already stagnant salaries. Corporate leaders should be ashamed of themselves for the massive cash they bleed from the company while telling everyone else the company didn’t do well enough to support bonuses or higher wages and salaries.