Recruiting Tech Pros Over 50? You’ll Pay for Experience.

For tech pros over 50 (and the recruiters who work with them), 2019 might prove a pivotal year.

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 four years ago). 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 for tech pros, 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 generally valued by employers (at least in terms of cash payouts). Hiring seasoned tech pros who have a bit of foresight can help companies avoid some of the crises and errors that plagued some of even the biggest firms in 2018; a couple decades of experience puts these workers in a great position to help teams through thorny situations. But recruiters and hiring managers who make a point of targeting older workers will need to sweeten their salary deals with additional perks (such as the aforementioned 401(k) match) if they want to land the ones with highly specialized skills.