Race and Age Impact Tech Salaries

Abstract illustration of a distinct group of individuals.
Illustration: iStock

By: Tekla S. Perry

In 2018, the salaries offered Asian tech workers in the United States surpassed those offered to their white counterparts for the first time. Meanwhile, salaries offered black tech professionals slipped further behind. Those are the conclusions of an annual study of tech salaries conducted by job search firm Hired that analyzed 420,000 interview requests and job offers going out to some 98,000 job seekers during the past year.

In addition to painting an overall picture of the engineering job market in different regions of the world, Hired considered the impact of race and age on salaries. It calculated that in 2018, U.S. employers offered Asian tech job seekers an average annual salary of $137,000, while white job seekers were offered $135,000, Hispanic job seekers were offered $128,000, and black job seekers were offered $124,000. And that gap between the highest and lowest offers had widened significantly since 2017, from $6,000 to $13,000.

The study also took a look at the impact of age on tech salaries, finding that, in the United States, average engineering salary offers hit a peak of $149,000 at age 40, plateaued for a decade, and then started sliding down at age 50.

This article originally appeared in IEEE Spectrum on 26 June 2019.