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Highest-paying IT jobs

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Information technology is a fast-growing field, and skilled workers are in high demand. As a result, the pay for computer-related jobs tends to be generous.

Just how generous? Salaries are affected by geographic area, the job applicant's qualifications, the health of the company doing the hiring, and numerous other factors. Still, it's helpful for job seekers to get a ballpark sense of what they might be able to earn (or what to shoot for in salary negotiations). So CareerBuilder pulled together salary information for nine IT careers. The figures are national averages from

1. Computer and information systems managers
It makes sense that computer and information systems managers are at the high end of the earning scale for IT jobs -- they oversee organizations' computer-related activities, from hardware to software to programming to networking to Internet security. Because they have so much responsibility, they may need an advanced degree, such as an MBA with a technology focus.

2. Software engineers
The range of software now used for business, scholarship and entertainment is truly staggering. Whether they're inventing hip computer games or solving a company's inventory problem, software engineers create the applications that make computers do new, useful and interesting things.

3. Database administrators
Setting up databases and ensuring their smooth operation is important for any organization with large amounts of information to store and manage. Database administrators fill this important role, designing, testing and troubleshooting databases. 

4. Computer scientists
A deep theoretical understanding of computer technology allows computer scientists to tackle complicated technical problems and dream up new uses for computers. A Ph.D. is required for most jobs.

5. Web developers
The Internet is now such an integral part of daily life that any business or organization that wants a public presence needs a good website. Web developers make websites, focusing mostly on the technical aspects of site creation but in some cases making design choices as well.

6. Systems administrators
In an ideal world, businesses wouldn't need systems administrators. But computer systems are delicate things that need qualified experts to make sure that all components (software, hardware, networks and security, to name a few) are in good working order, and are working together properly.

7. Programmers
Computer software engineers design programs, and programmers write the instructions that allow the computers to put the programs into action, typically using a programming language such as C++ or Python. When they're not creating new code, they repair and maintain existing programs.

8. Computer systems analysts
Systems administrators are responsible for the management and oversight of computer systems. Computer systems analysts choose the systems in the first place, selecting hardware and software. They also decide whether and how the computers an organization already has can be used for new purposes. Most of the time, computer systems analysts specialize in the software and hardware used for a certain type of business, such as engineering or accounting.

9. Network administrators
In the fast-evolving tech landscape, connectivity between computers is key -- whether for small clusters of computers (local area networks, or LANs) or computers across huge geographic areas (wide area networks, or WANS, of which the Internet is probably the biggest example). Network administrators are experts in the design, setup and management of these networks.

Last Updated: 04/01/2012 - 10:59 PM

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