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Tech Culture

Remote Workers Make More Money, Cloud Salary Survey Says

Cloud computing professionals who work full time at the office make an average of $51,000 less per year than everyone else in their field, reports O'Reilly.
Jun 23rd, 2022 12:01pm by
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People who work on site at their organizations get paid on average $51,000 a year less than everyone else in the cloud computing profession, according to a new salary survey from tech publisher O’Reilly.

Full-time on-site workers made up only 6% of the survey pool, as compared to the 63% that work remotely all the time, and 31% that do so one to four days a week, according to the “2022 Cloud Salary Survey.”  Remote workers were also more likely to report getting bigger raises.

This is particularly notable because, as workers relocated to less expensive places during the COVID-19 pandemic and began demanding all-remote roles, public debates emerged about whether their pay should be adjusted downward to reflect their local cost of living and lack of commuting expenses. It seems that argument isn’t gaining much traction in the labor market.

The average salary in cloud computing, according to the report, is $182,000.

The responses for this report were collected in April from 778 qualified respondents, all subscribers to O’Reilly’s Infrastructure & Ops Newsletter.

Average Raise Didn’t Beat Inflation

Despite the hefty compensation cited in the report, the annual salary increase was only 4%, which is below the rate of inflation. In May, the annualized, unadjusted Consumer Price Index-based inflation rate in the United States was 8.6%. So why the lower raises?

Perhaps because even IT professionals don’t get big raises unless they actually change jobs, and only 20% of those surveyed did change jobs in the past year.

Another reason cloud computing salaries have not soared in the past year is that once you start earning so much money, the way employers compete to hire or retain you is through non-monetary compensation. In other words, quality-of-life issues.

The sample skewed toward the older participants. The chart below shows how salaries differed based on age.

Source: O’Reilly, “2022 Cloud Salary Survey”

1 in 2 Cloud Professionals Got Training in 2021

Other findings, regarding certifications and training, include:

  • Almost half of the survey respondents had participated in some technical training in the past year, but only 18% actually received certification of some kind.
  • The older a worker is, the less likely they are to put value in earning a certification. Indeed, in the recently published “Open Source Jobs Report,” 76% of 25- to 34-year-olds thought certifications are very or extremely useful for their careers. That number was  55% among people 45 and older.
  • The highest salaries were associated with people who had become Google Cloud Certified Professional Cloud Architects ($231,000).
  • Not all certifications result in huge spikes in salary increases. For example, those that became Microsoft Certified Azure Administrator Associates got, on average, 2% raises. However, that may be because they reported that the certification is the first in a series they plan to acquire.
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