Salaries inch up during lackluster year

Engineering salaries are holding steady or even growing. That’s been one of the few positive news items amongst glum economic announcements of recent weeks.
The IEEE-USA announced its 2009 figures last month, though it cautioned that its survey was based on data gathered way back in 2008. Back then, 8 percent unemployment was considered outlandishly high.
IEEE-USA members were making strong progress then. Total income went from $110,610 in the 2007 tax year to $116,000 in 2008. That 4.9 percent increase more than doubled the 2.4 percent rise from the previous survey.
Those in components, packaging and manufacturing technology, the category that most typifies IPC members, was $124,590. That’s above the $117,000 earned by those working on lasers and electro-optics, but below the $135,000 earned by solid state circuit developers.
Another new survey, from Design News magazine, found that an average design engineer’s salary of $89,597 was unchanged from spring of 2009 to spring this year. That was augmented by a jump of nearly 50 percent in bonuses, which rose to $9,025.
The two surveys largely mirror the IPC survey released at the start of this year. IPC’s 2008–2009 wage and salary study saw raises of just under 2 percent for EMS employees. That’s not a huge percentage, but in this climate, most of the people getting those raises probably welcome the increase.

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