The position of DevOps Engineer is gaining some serious respect, and with that comes cash.
In Dice’s recently released “2019 Tech Salary Report,” DevOps Engineer now ranks in the Top 5 of all tech salaries, with an average of $111,683. The survey is based on the responses of 10,780 technology professionals conducted between Oct. 22 and Dec. 13, 2018.
It’s the first time that the title of DevOps Engineer has appeared in the Top 5, according to Dice. The one caveat is that the position might not be as popular as the annual salary suggests; rather, more professionals now identify with this position.
What it does mean is that the DevOps Engineer title is now ranked with more established tech titles, including senior leadership positions CEO, CIO, Vice President and Director, with an average salary of $142,063; System Architect, at $129,952; Tech Management, including Strategist and Architect, at $127,121; and Product Manager, at $114,174.
Overall, the average salary for tech workers remained relatively flat year over year. In 2018, the average salary totaled $93,244, a less than 1 percent increase from 2017, when the average salary stood at $92,712, according to Dice.
In an email, Dice CTO Klavs Miller noted that the increasing use and adoption of various cloud-based technologies is pushing enterprises to invest more in DevOps engineers to take advantage of that compute power to develop new apps.
“Many DevOps Engineer job requirements include a heavy focus on the creation of infrastructure as code, essentially transforming operations into the management of codebases that create infrastructure (in cloud services or native cloud infrastructure rather than servers and hardware),” Miller wrote. “We are also seeing and experiencing first-hand that more and more organizations are moving toward having combined development and operations teams around a domain, rather than splitting along traditional functional lines.”
In his email, Miller noted that while there might be few tech pros that use the “DevOps Engineer” title, it doesn’t mean that there’s an actual lack of engineers with the skills to help enterprises with their DevOps projects.
Instead, it’s a matter of looking for talent that might already be there.
“There is probably a shortage of talent that label themselves as ‘DevOps Engineers,’ but employers should look at the skills required by those roles instead,” Miller noted.
“There’s a growing demand for a skill that is still evolving with market trends,” he added. “As an example, DevOps is not nearly as common as its more common sibling, software engineers, but it has become more popular each year according to our salary survey and among employers who are sourcing Dice for these positions.”
If private business isn’t your area, the Louisiana Economic Development agency is currently advertising for an entry-level DevOps position.
In addition to specific tech titles, the Dice report shows that several types of programming languages that are now associated with the DevOps discipline are commanding significant salaries in the market.
For instance, those with expertise in Google’s Golang programming language can command salaries of up to $132,827, according to the Dice survey.
A little further down the line, and keeping with Miller’s emphasis on cloud-based technologies driving much of the DevOps conversation, those with knowledge of Amazon’s DynamoDB and Redshift can command salaries of more than $125,000 on average, the study found.
Additionally, platform-as-a-service (PaaS) skills can net a developer an annual salary of more than $122,000.
In his email, Miller noted that it’s difficult to draw a direct line between needs for certain programming languages and the growing popularity of DevOps. The growing reliance on cloud and the types of digital transformation projects enterprises are engaged with now show how the market has shifted.
“There are some assumptions that we can’t confirm, but DevOps shares programming languages with other roles that are also in demand, as employers adopt cloud-based technology and open source becomes more pervasive in companies’ tech stacks,” Miller added.