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While salaries are up this year and seminar attendance is stable, engineers may find themselves fighting to keep up with the demands of engineer and IT manager. Many also state certification is needless and they would like to learn more about these new technologies. Welcome to the 2008 Salary Survey, where engineers learn they're not alone in their struggles and aspirations.
Overall salaries are up compared to last year despite a rough economy. From Regional Directors of Engineering (up $3,333) to Station Chief Engineers (up $4,510) to Staff Engineers (up $3,000) and Operations Staff/Managers (up $1,945), most people are seeing more money this year.
Below Top 50 management salaries have risen consistently over the years, but Top 50 has seen a big leap, raking in $35,000 more this year than Below Top 50. On the engineering side, while both Top 50 and Below Top 50 are rising, the gap between the two markets has increased from $15,000 to $20,000. Contract engineers are mostly earning $50-$59/hour, but 19 percent are also split, making either less than $20 or $70 (or more, as contractors typically charge more for emergencies).
Around 62 percent received raises in 2008, while 38 percent did not. Of those who did, 33.3 percent received 3 percent raises; 12 percent, 2 percent; 15.7 percent, 4 percent; 12.4 percent, 5 percent; 13.3 percent, 6-10 percent; and 7.2 percent, greater than 10 percent.
More data on contract engineering at RadioMagOnline.com
Certification is perhaps one of the great debates among radio engineers. Our data shows that engineers with SBE Certification bring home $18,000 (Top 50) and $19,000 (Below Top 50) more in salary than non-certified engineers. Yet only one-third to half of respondants hold certification. It is understandable that times are tough and certification costs money (and time); it is also reasonable to say it won't help your career if your boss doesn't respect certification and you don't plan on moving to another job. But simply not seeing the need or saying it's not necessary for your job is ignoring the fact that certification offers more money and shows an avid interest in your career. Regardless of what your employer thinks, certification is something to better yourself — you're never too old or experienced to go through the process and maybe learn something.
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