Study: Age Counts in High Tech Salary Race

Employees work on computers as a world map shows cyberattacks (represented by a fire icon) which are aimed against the Israel Electric Corp. (IEC), the main supplier of electrical power in Israel, at the company’s cybersecurity center in Haifa. (David Vaaknin for The Washington Post)

Seniority counts in Israel’s high tech industry. The majority of workers in the industry are between age 25 and 45, although 8 percent are older than 45 as well. The average salary for that 8 percent – most of whom are employed in senior positions – is NIS 28,480.

For their younger colleagues, the study of high-tech salary distribution by age was also a matter of seniority. The study, by Ethosia, an employment service, shows that tech workers between the ages of 25 and 35 – known as “Generation Y” to demographers – earned on average NIS 18,470 before taxes for their tech positions. Those 35 to 45 years of age, who fit the demographic description of “Generation X” – earned NIS 23,800 on average.

One factor playing into salary level could have to do with job loyalty. Younger workers had a tendency to flit between employers, meaning that they were less likely to work their way up the ladder into management in a specific workplace. According to the study, 13.5 percent of all workers left their jobs willingly to take a new one elsewhere. In 2009, that figure was just 2 percent.

According to Ethosia chairman Eyal Salomon, “older Generation X workers are more traditional in the sense that they are willing to remain loyal to a specific firm, remaining there even for decades and working their way up to management positions. Younger Generation Y workers, on the other hand, only want to work in jobs that interest them, and expect to get paid based on the skills they bring to a job. They have perhaps a better balance between work, family and leisure time, all of which hold equal importance,” he said.