The STEM jobs with the fastest-growing salaries: new report

salaries 2021 Australia STEM jobs
A survey of more than 1000 companies show digital jobs and life sciences are earning the big bucks. Image: Shutterstock

According to a new report released by consulting firm, Mercer, jobs in Australia’s high tech and life sciences sectors saw some of the biggest salary boosts this year.

Border closures during COVID-19 have shrunk Australia’s talent pool, meaning companies are forking out bigger pay packets and bonuses for the right local talent, according to Mercer’s 2021 Australia Total Remuneration Survey (TRS). There was a median increase of 3% in salaries across all sectors in 2021, and 93% of the 1028 companies surveyed said they are planning salary increases for 2022.

The “digitalisation of interaction” is a key trend driving salary movements across all sectors, the survey found.

“Demand for roles like digital marketing, social media, e-commerce/online shopping have increased heavily as organisations look to improve their digital platforms and customer experience. Roles within these categories have recorded some of the highest annual base salary increases.”

For example, the salary for a senior manager in User Experience (UX) Design jumped an impressive 10.5% in 2021.

“Companies are ready to pay premiums for User Experience Design, Data Scientists and Business Intelligence roles with some years of experience,” the report said.

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But it’s not just senior level jobs seeing salary increases. The entry-level professional role within the IT sub-category of Information Systems Architecture recorded one of the highest annual movements of 8% in 2021.

“This trend is likely to hold as more organisations are investing further in emerging technology,” the report said.

Embracing emerging tech isn’t the only trend of the past two years.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, life sciences was also singled out as “one of the best performing and growing industries during the pandemic”.

“As the industry faces skills shortage and high demand, salary increases are positioned at the higher end of the market with certain roles attracting sign-on bonuses.”

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Gemma Chilton

Author: Gemma Chilton

Gemma is the Managing Editor of Careers with STEM magazine. She has previously worked as Digital Managing Editor at Australian Geographic and a staff writer at Cosmos science magazine.


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