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What Does Our Salary Survey Mean For Recruitment in 2022?

  • Publish Date: Posted over 1 year ago
  • Author:by Julian Vecchio

Recruitment in the Technology, Digital, Cyber and Data markets has never been static.

Over the years, emerging technologies have continuously driven change across the industry,  but the war to secure talent in 2021 has resulted in a heavily candidate-driven market.

For businesses operating in these sectors, this adds a new layer of complications to recruitment and human resource management, and, as of today, bargaining power has shifted away from the hands of employers.

The Impacts of the Candidate-Driven Market 

Growing skills shortages across technology and software positions has created thousands of job opportunities worldwide. 

Long-term employees wanting a career upgrade are facing the perfect environment to make demands of their employers or alternatively move to competitors who are willing to fulfil their needs.

This year, Human Resource Managers have to learn how to:

  1. Navigate current expectations.

  2. Put their teams first and foremost.

  3. Negotiate with employees.

  4. Update their recruitment practices.

  5. Retain and attract talent.

Additionally, to secure the livelihood of their businesses, leadership roles must evolve from distant CEOs into engaged and empathetic members of the greater team. 

Technical Recruitment in the Year Ahead

Against the backdrop of a challenging hiring landscape, organisations are facing pressure to entice talent at all levels. It’s no longer enough to simply provide competitive salaries and benefits. You have to stand out. 

As firms operating in Technology, Digital, Cyber or Data spaces find their feet, Xcede has stepped up to help. Our UK Salary Survey Guide provides insight into the year ahead, and thorough research explores the different HR trends that both job seekers and employers must be aware of.

Key Takeaways from our Salary Survey Guide 2022



Top Salaries


Technology is what brings innovation to life. Businesses need top tech talent to remain at the forefront of digital disruption.

1. DevOps - £88,000

2. Infrastructure - £88,000

3. Mobile Development - £84,000

4. Front-End Development - £78,000


As more businesses undergo digital transformations or evolve their strategy to remain at the

forefront of innovation, the demand for top digital talent continues.

1. Product Management - £81,000

2. Product Design - £80,000

3. UX/UI Design - £75,000


Cyber professionals are critical in helping organisations defend their operational infrastructure and respond to any threats.

1. Cloud Security Architect - £135,000

2. Head of Cyber Incident Response - £135,000

3. SOC Manager - £125,00

4. DevSecOps Engineer - £125,000

5.  Network Security Architect - £115,000


Specialists are needed across all sectors to help businesses translate data into actionable insights, make predictions, and automate processes using the latest innovations.

1. Machine Learning & Al - £82,400

2. Data Science - £80,600

3. Data Engineering - £80,000

The Summary of Salaries in Each Sector

  • Technology: The tech industry showed the biggest increase year-on-year. Overall, salaries across all roles at all levels were up 15%.

  • Digital: 3 million roles are presently available in the digital tech sector, and, as such, salaries in the digital space are rising as employers seek to secure the skills they need. Overall average salaries increased by 15% across all digital roles in 2021 compared to the previous year.

  • Cyber: Employment across the industry rose by 13% last year, with more than 6,000 new jobs added to the UK’s 50,000-strong cyber workforce.

  • Data: The rapid growth of the data market means demand for skilled professionals has hit an all-time high. Our results reflect this, with average data salaries rising by 7% overall on the previous year. 

Applying Our Observations to Your HR & Recruitment

The data we collected is starting to reveal trends that are forming across the Technology, Digital, Cyber and Data markets. Each is expected to have a huge impact on how human resource management and recruitment are conducted in 2022.

1. Contracting Wins Over Full-Time Employment

“Organisations have the greatest need for mid-senior level candidates, particularly on the contract side. They need professionals who can hit the ground running and deliver ROI from the outside.” 

- Dan Norris, Contract Sales Manager (Technology)

The candidate-driven market has persuaded talent to seize control of their career paths, moving into contracting positions that can better serve their requirements. Contractors are often able to choose their hourly rates, working hours, and even their place of work. 

In 2022, businesses will continue to rely on contract positions when they are in desperate need of expert talent. They must, therefore, prioritise the wellbeing of their contractors or risk gaining a bad reputation and struggle to hire in these spaces. 

2. Entry-Level Positions Must Be Created 

“Companies prioritised senior professionals, which saw many junior workers lose their jobs and a lack of entry-level opportunities in the market. It’s a massive loss to the industry, and the repercussions are likely to be felt over the coming years.” - Xcede Salary Survey 2022

Skill shortages in technology have only been further advanced by the pandemic.  We’re now facing an 18-24 month talent gap where individuals must be trained. 

Our future talent pipelines rely heavily on apprenticeship positions, and businesses that are starting to recover absolutely must begin creating entry-level positions as soon as possible or suffer the ongoing consequences in the next few years.

3. Remote Working Opens the Door for Diversity

“Finding candidates remains a challenge, with most active job seekers likely to have 3-4 attractive offers under consideration.” 

- Matthew O’Hare, Associate Director (Cyber)

In the past few years, the UK market has become incredibly competitive. Thankfully, remote working is allowing businesses to tap into the international market, allowing them to reach a wider pool of talent in 2022. 

Due to the strength of the pound, Technology, Digital, Cyber and Data businesses can offer competitive and attractive salaries to workers across the world - expanding diversity in teams. Moreover, DEI schemes can help global businesses protect the emotional health of their staff and ensure they are eradicating racism and microaggressions in the workplace.

4. Employer Branding Grows in Importance

“We’ve also seen enormous value in employers being open with candidates about their pain points and challenges.” 

- Andrew Barnett, Sales Manager (Digital)

Before COVID-19, employer research involved a quick online query to review average salaries. 

Now, social media lets candidates deep-dive into the quality of an employer before deciding whether to accept a job offer. They are expecting hiring managers to be honest with them about working expectations, which is backed up by their online research. 

Candidates are even reaching out to current employees through LinkedIn, so by investing in their employer branding, businesses can benefit from positive word of mouth.

5. Don’t Match Salaries, Go Beyond Them

“Companies needing professionals who possess a very niche set of skills not readily available in the marketplace are prepared to pay a premium to secure them.” 

- Niall Wharton, Team Lead (Data)

Salaries in Technology, Digital, Cyber and Data are on the rise because businesses are being smart, competing for talent by offering salaries that go above and beyond the current averages. 

Our Salary Survey gives you the guidelines and an understanding of candidate expectations in the market, but our team helps you make real-time recruitment decisions and extend offers that attract industry-leading professionals.

Download our 2022 Salary Survey today.