SEP-OCT 2018

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INTECH SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2018 11 COVER STORY T he financial situation of the average automation engineer got a nice boost in 2018. As the salary of the average au - tomation professional rose for the fifth consec- utive year, our salary survey found incremental growth greater than 5% for the first time since 2010 (5.3% in the U.S., 1.5% globally). So are to day's automation engineers finally getting their due? A bigger boost in salaries has been anticipated for quite some time. Manufactur - ing and automation analysts have long pointed toward a looming skills gap, estimating more than 3 million jobs will need to be filled in the next decade. As this year's survey shows, that certainly seems reflected in automation sala - ries, as a career in the industry is increasingly becoming a financially rewarding decision. With the rise of the Industrial Internet of Things and increasingly connected technology requiring advanced considerations in both cybersecurity and system design, the role of today's engineer is more crucial and complex than ever. Yet for the past few years of this survey, we saw only mod - est gains in salary. From 2013 to 2017, the average salary rose a total of 5.6%, just barely above the gain for 2018 alone. Some of the most prominent gains were: l Average salaries for entry-level professionals in the U.S. (fewer than two years of experi- ence) increased 13.7%. l Average salaries for professionals with gradu- ate school/advanced degrees increased 7.2%. l The two largest raises, proportionally, went to engineering consulting (9.9%) and process/ plant/manufacturing engineering (10.7%). While we still have not seen any signs that the labor gap is being bridged, we can say that the increasing demand for automation profession- als has finally taken that significant step up that we have been expecting for years. With the need for experienced professionals still growing, we anticipate the demand to remain strong for en gineers for the foreseeable future, with a great deal of opportunity for young graduates and those who are interested in a STEM career. Five factors of salary determination Through our years of conducting this salary survey, we have identified the five major factors that determine salary: l geographic region l job function l level of education l industry segment l years of experience Our survey collected more than 1,900 re- sponses from automation professionals located around the world, including 1,290 from the U.S. Salaries from country to country and region to Region of world Average salary Percent respondents U.S. $119,354 72.1% Canada $104,615 6.5% Mexico $48,611 0.5% Central America (including Caribbean) $74,000 0.6% South America $54,384 3.6% Europe (western) $95,526 5.3% Europe (eastern) $44,230 1.5% Africa $46,700 1.3% Middle East $81,275 2.7% Australia and New Zealand $105,769 0.7% Asia and South Pacific $54,574 2.6% South Asia $52,840 2.5% Average salary by region of the world FAST FORWARD l Incremental salary growth was greater than 5% for the first time in eight years, and salary growth for entry-level engineers in the U.S. was more than 10%. l Engineering consulting and process, plant, and manufacturing engineering received the largest raises, while engineering management and operations and maintenance decreased in average salary. l Oil and gas continued to pay the biggest salaries, but was the only industry segment to report a decrease in average salaries.

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