IT Workers Consider Job Satisfaction More Important than Money

May 6, 2013

A long-standing assumption about the technology industry is that professionals enter the field primarily for its financial benefits – for those who put in long hours training and accrue hefty debts putting themselves through school, there’s an expectation that the investment will pay off manyfold in the end. According to new research, however, it is not all about the money. The Telegraph reported data from tech recruiting firm Silicon Milkroundabout finding that almost 75 percent of workers in IT jobs care more about their day-to-day happiness than the sizes of their paychecks.

On a related note, respondents also expressed willingness to work for startup companies rather than established tech firms, despite the fact that existing companies are often more apt to offer stable incomes. Two-thirds of those polled said they could be “easily persuaded” to work for startups, and one-fourth said they were “only considering” such a move.

Silicon Milkroundabout’s research reveals several factors that matter more to the typical tech worker than money. Here are three.

Being around like-minded professionals
Many professionals forgo high-paying opportunities because they appreciate the culture of smaller companies. Forbes highlighted this trend, citing the culture at Yahoo as a counterexample – Yahoo’s office culture was so disjointed that CEO Marissa Mayer had to enforce a ban on telecommuting because so few people wanted to work in the office. Startups, on the other hand, rarely have this problem, as employees often enjoy sharing workspaces and collaborating.

Having a stake in their companies
At many tech companies, there is endless bureaucratic red tape to deal with – HR departments inundate employees with paperwork, and PR officers are constantly looking over workers’ shoulders to manage a public image. For this reason, employees often choose business opportunities where they can have greater control, sometimes even owning a small stake in their corporations.

Making a difference in the tech world
Silicon Milkroundabout’s Andrew Hunter says that some choose to work for startups because they offer employees a greater opportunity to have a real impact.

“The pay might not be as good, but the excitement of startup life and the chance to make an immediate difference are enticing more and more bright minds into the startup world,” Hunter said.

Because they have greater control, both financially and in terms of corporate vision, workers are often happier in firms that don’t offer them big paychecks. Money is important, but workers in IT jobs are after a whole lot more.