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What Countries Pay IT Managers The Most? Check Out These Lists

For IT managers and experienced IT pros, the United States ranked sixth in pay, while Switzerland is the most generous country to techies overall.
If you want to earn the most for your IT work, move to Europe.

European countries rank in the top 10 for IT pay, according to a new list released on Wednesday by human resources consulting firm Mercer, which analyzed total pay of IT professionals in 6,545 companies in 35 countries.

This year, for IT managers and experienced IT pros (who are supervised by others), the United States ranked sixth in pay, while Switzerland is the most generous country to techies overall.

For IT managers pay, the U.S. also lags behind Denmark, Belgium, the United Kingdom, and Ireland. The average annual pay for IT managers in the U.S. this year is $107,500 compared with $140,960 in Switzerland.

When it comes to pay for experienced IT staff, the United States also lags behind Belgium, Germany, Denmark, and the United Kingdom, in that order. The average pay for experienced IT staff in the United States was $60,000, compared with $101,508 in top-paying Switzerland.

Who pays the least? Vietnam, Bulgaria, and the Philippines are the cheapest in paying IT managers. India ranks fourth in being cheap to IT managers, but is the second-lowest-paying country to IT staff. IT managers in Vietnam will earn an average of only $15,470 this year, while experienced IT staffers earn only $5,574.

Mercer says the pay pattern reflects the trend of U.S. and Western European businesses outsourcing lower-skilled IT jobs to regions where talent is cheaper, while keeping more-demanding tech jobs requiring more complex skill sets locally.

Here are the top 10 highest-paying countries for IT managers. Average annual pay figures are listed in U.S. dollars.

  1. Switzerland, $140,960
  2. Denmark, $123,080
  3. Belgium, $121,170
  4. United Kingdom, $118,190
  5. Ireland, $108,230
  6. United States, $107,500
  7. Germany, $106,730
  8. Canada, $93,860
  9. Hong Kong (China), $90,340
  10. Australia, $88,850

Here are the top lowest-paying countries for IT managers.

  1. Vietnam, $15,470
  2. Bulgaria, $22,240
  3. Philippines, $22,280
  4. India, $25,000
  5. Indonesia, $31,720
  6. China (Shanghai), $33,770
  7. Malaysia, $35,260
  8. Czech Republic, $35,880
  9. China (Beijing), $36,220
  10. Argentina, $43,180

Here are the 10 highest-paying countries for experienced IT staff:

  1. Switzerland, $101,508
  2. Belgium, $75,497
  3. Germany, $72,097
  4. Denmark, $70,300
  5. United Kingdom, $64,337
  6. United States, $60,000
  7. Ireland, $59,998
  8. Israel, $58,721
  9. Canada, $57,982
  10. Finland, $54,742

Here are the 10 lowest-paying countries for experienced IT staff:

  1. Vietnam, $5,574
  2. Philippines, $8,133
  3. India, $9,628
  4. Indonesia, $10,048
  5. China (Shanghai), $13,212
  6. Bulgaria, $14,241
  7. Malaysia, $14,446
  8. Argentina, $14,700
  9. China (Beijing), $16,145
  10. Czech Republic, $17,253

The Mercer survey closely mirrors the 2007 InformationWeek IT salary survey, which found median base salaries -- not just bonuses -- are edging up for the first time in several years.