UK Cybersecurity: Permanent job salaries growing faster than contractor pay rises

Demand for cyber security skills in the UK means that salaries for full time IT security jobs are increasing faster than contractor rates, according to a new survey.

Annual IT security permanent salaries climbed by 5 per cent (from Q4 2015 to Q4 2016) to £57,706, compared to a 0.62 per cent increase for contractor day rates (up to £484) over the same period, according to tech recruiting firm Experis.

Experis reports that annual demand for permanent and contract IT security professionals has increased by 46 per cent, driven by demand spurred on by the need to build robust defences against cybercrime in the wake of high profile hacks. The workload of achieving compliance with the European Union’s GDPR data protection rules is also having an effect.

Experis reckons the demand for IT security talent is at an all-time high. Its figures are based on tracking IT jobs advertised (within the five technology disciplines: Big Data, cloud, IT security, mobile and web development) across 10 UK cities. Almost three times as many permanent IT security roles advertised in London (3,164) than in every other tech city in the study combined (1,278). Four in five IT security contractor job adverts came from London, an even more marked difference.

IT security professionals in the capital are still commanding the biggest salaries (£62,596); almost a fifth (19 per cent) higher than any other region.

The Q4 2016 edition of the survey (available here, registration required) shows that companies are prioritising longer-term investment – with a 52.9 per cent surge in demand for permanent staff year-on-year. In comparison, there was a lower 15.3 per cent rise in demand from Q4 2015 – Q4 2016 for IT security contractor support.

Geoff Smith, managing director, Experis UK & Ireland, commented: “With business leaders taking cyber security concerns more seriously than ever before, we’re starting to see a shift in how they integrate the necessary skills into their workforce. While there’s still a requirement for contractor support, employers are now prioritising long-term defence, and are increasingly looking for permanent IT security professionals to do this.”

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