10 highest-paying IT skills for 2023

Digital transformation is at the forefront of every modern business strategy, whether it’s adopting the cloud, improving and updating IT infrastructure, or developing data and analytics strategy to drive decision-making. Companies are interested in hiring seasoned pros who have a strong working knowledge of the skills they need to accomplish technology and business goals.

According to the latest 2023 Dice Tech Salary Report, there is a growing demand for IT pros who have mastered skills aimed at wrangling big data, developing cloud-native applications, processing data streams, architecting software systems, leveraging DevOps, or orchestrating cloud workloads — and they’re willing to pay top dollar to recruit them.

IT professionals already earn some of the highest salaries in the job market, but there are certain in-demand skills that can help boost your salary. Whether you already have these skills on your resume, or you want to learn a new skill to help improve your chances of a higher salary during a job hunt, these skills can help secure your IT career. Here are the 10 highest-paying IT skills of 2023, and how much they’ve increased in value since 2021.

1. MapReduce          

MapReduce is a programming model utilized in the Hadoop framework to access data stored in the Hadoop File System (HDFS). It was originally developed to be used by the Google search engine but has since grown to be adopted widely within the tech industry. MapReduce helps users analyze large datasets that span across different servers and networks, dividing it into smaller modules of data that can be distributed to computer clusters for parallel processing. The name references the Map and Reduce phases of this process, the map phase being when the data is input into the system and mapped, while the reduce phase refers to the process of analyzing and consolidating that data for output.

Average salary: US$146,672

Increase since 2021: +9.3%

2. Go/Golang            

Go, also referred to as Golang, is an open-source programming language developed in 2007 by Google as a user-friendly programming language to assist in the development of high-level software systems, web applications, and cloud and networking services. It’s designed to be efficient and easy-to-use, with simple syntax and features, including garbage collection, memory safety, and concurrency support. It’s become increasingly popular as for cloud-based programming due to the fact that it is adept at handling parallelism and concurrency. But you’ll also find it used in distributed systems, web development, machine learning, and network programming.

Average salary: US$145,672

Increase since 2021: +18.2%

3. Elasticsearch                    

Elasticsearch is a distributed search and analytics engine built on Apache Lucene that enables users to store, search, and analyze large data sets in real-time. It’s become a popular tool for organizations with large amounts of data to sift through, allowing users to quickly search through complex data sets stored across different servers. Elasticsearch is valued as a highly scalable and distributed tool that offers real-time search and analytics, full-text search, geospatial search, and structured search.

Average salary: US$143,619

Increase since 2021: +4.5%

4. Chef                       

The Chef automation tool is commonly used in DevOps and IT operations to manage and deploy software applications across different systems, servers, containers, and cloud resources. For large-scale computing environments, Chef is a valuable tool that enables organizations to become more operationally efficient by streamlining infrastructure management processes. Chef minimizes a lot of the backend work on automation, allowing companies to minimize downtime and errors, while also freeing up workers to focus on more high-level tasks. 

Average salary: US$143,188

Increase since 2021: +8.8%

5. Apache Kafka                    

Apache Kafka is a powerful tool for real-time data processing and analyzing, using a distributed streaming platform design. Kafka also makes it possible for organizations to handle large data sets, with high throughput and low latency, and provides a scalable and fault-tolerant infrastructure for data streaming. And with Kafka, it’s possible for several different systems to exchange data in real-time. It’s a popular tool in finance, telecommunications, and e-commerce, among other industries as well — it’s typically used along with other tools including Apache Spark, Apache Flink, and Apache Storm.

Average salary: US$142,764

Increase since 2021: +8.4%

6. Service-oriented architecture (SOA)                 

Service-oriented architecture (SOA) is an architectural framework that focuses on software applications and systems as independent services. Each service is broken down and categorized by its own specific set of functions into a standardized interface that allows those services to interact and access one another. Breaking services down this way makes them easier to maintain, update, and monitor without impacting other parts of the system and creating unnecessary downtime. SOA gives companies the framework to organize software and services and to manage flexible, scalable, and reusable services across different applications throughout the organization.

Average salary: US$142,459

Increase since 2021: +1.6%

7. Teradata                

Teradata is a company that offers several enterprise data warehousing and analytics tools that help organizations analyze and manage large and complex data sets. One of the company’s most notable products is the Teradata Database, a relational database management system designed for large-scale data warehousing and analytics. Teradata’s offerings focus on enabling organizations to integrate data from different sources, performing advanced analytics, creating business intelligence reports, and building data warehouses.

Average salary: US$141,515

Increase since 2021: +14.7%

8. Redis                      

Redis is an open-source data storage and management tool designed to be fast, efficient, and powerful. It enables users to cache and store data, making it quick and easy to access, while also keeping it backed up to a hard drive. As an IT tool, it’s known for being helpful for managing data structures, handling data in a distributed environment, and offering a high-performance and scalable solution for data storage and caching.

Average salary: US$140,290

Increase since 2021: +1.6%

9. PaaS                       

Platform as a service (PaaS) is a cloud computing model that provides users with an environment for developers to build, test, and deploy applications without impacting other systems and networks in the process. PaaS tools are typically third-party services that companies use to help improve the development process with a variety of development tools, scalability and resource management features, database and storage options, and tools for deployment and management. PaaS is touted as offering businesses reduced costs and a faster time-to-market, allowing for better efficiency and speed when releasing new products and services.

Average salary: US$139,858

Increase since 2021: +3.2%

10. Kubernetes         

Kubernetes is an open-source automation tool that helps companies deploy, scale, and manage containerized applications. Originally developed by Google, but now maintained by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), Kubernetes helps companies automate the deployment and scale of containerized applications across a set of machines, with a focus on container and storage orchestration, automatic scaling, self-healing, and service discovery and load balancing. Features include the ability to automatically detect and recover from errors and failures, built-in load balancing to manage traffic, and the ability to automatically scale applications while accounting for demand, resources, and cost.

Average salary: US$139,167

Increase since 2021: N/A

The next 5

Other skills associated with IT pros earning higher annual salaries include:

11. Containers

Average salary: US$138,559

Increase since 2021: +9.5%

12. Amazon Route 53             

Average salary: US$137,928

Increase since 2021: +3.4%

13. Rust

Average salary: US$137,153

Increase since 2021: N/A

14. RDBMS                 

Average salary: US$137,104

Increase since 2021: +8.5%

15. HANA                    

Average salary: US$136,789

Increase since 2021: +2.1%

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