Compliance gold rush boosts salaries by 10 percent

Compliance concerns have created a gold rush for security professionals with salaries increasing 10 percent in 2005.

Legislation, such as Sarbanes Oxley and Basel II, is driving demand, according to the latest Ambition market trends report.

Earlier this year salaries for IT security professionals averaged between $98,000 and $150,000 a year. Today, salaries have risen to between $130,000 and $180,000.

With the exception of security professionals, contract rates have remained steady with some marginal increases of between 3 and 5 percent across the board. Similar increases were also reported for permanent positions.

Ambition IT recruitment director Jane Bianchini said legislation and increased attacks contributed to the salary boom for IT security professionals. "The economy is strong although we are not in a dotcom era boom," she said.

"Contract rates and permanent positions are steady because people are making lifestyle choices by giving preference to permanent positions. "People who have been in the industry for 10 to 15 years favour permanent work because they have already experimented with contracting and have made a lifestyle choice."

Hays Information Technology Recruitment general manager Peter Noblett said there has been a "dramatic" increase in demand for security professionals. Noblett said this mini boom favours those with security qualifications like CISSP.

Candle ICT NSW general manager Peter Zonnevylle said network security has been in hot demand for the last 18 months and shows no sign of abating. Zonnevylle added there's strong demand for security experts with Sarbanes-Oxley experience.

"Sarbanes-Oxley has been a major driver for security and people with these skills in Australia are scarce ... those who have gained that experience overseas are in short supply," he said, adding that while they cannot name their own price, they are certainly in a bullish market.

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