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Aussie tech contractor fees flatten

Aussie tech contractor fees flatten

Change management and ERP less in demand, but some roles are still sought after.

Credit: Dreamstime

Australian technology contractors are feeling the brunt of a global market correction as certain segments face lower demand and flattening fees. 

According to Hays' IT Contractor Rates Guide FY23/24 report, organisations have largely finalised extensive digital transformations and enterprise resource planning (ERP) system implementation projects, meaning flattening rates for contractors. 

Change and project managers are now in less demand, with project managers and senior project managers now commanding lower daily rates. 

Sitting at the top end of the change management scale, enterprise architects are now typically charging between $1,100 and $1,480 a day, with Tasmania seeing the lowest demand and ACT the highest. 

Hays reported a significant drop for roles in the ERP/customer relationship management (CRM) space, with typical rates dropping by 11 per cent reflecting businesses' digitisation journey moving to maturity. 

At the top of the scale, ERP architects can command a daily rate of around $1,200 per day across Australia. At the lower end, ERP and CRM developers can demand between $880 in Tasmania and Queensland, while those in ACT may see an average of $1,040. 

Meanwhile, software developers are seeing an increase of 6 per cent in typical rates. In the top bracket, development managers are contracting rates of around $1,000 a day, although regional Victoria demonstrates significantly higher demand with rates of $1,300. 

In the middle range, front-end developers are looking at a rough average of between $900 and $950 per day, although developers in ACT can likely bag around $1,040. Senior developers in Java are also averaging around $900 across the country. 

Regarding cyber security, architects are looking at between $1,200 and $1,300 a day on average while analysts are looking at between $720 and $800 on average, with fees higher for both in ACT. 

A spotlight on infrastructure 

At the entry-level of the infrastructure segment are service desk or level one support roles. Within this field, Victoria-based support roles are typically bagging $330 a day. Sydney, regional NSW, ACT and southern Queensland are on $320. Tasmania and Adelaide are seeing $300 while in Darwin and Perth, the figure is $280. 

Within applications support, contractors can command daily rates of $400 per day in ACT, Adelaide and Darwin. At the top end, Sydney contractors charge on average $550, with Melbourne trailing behind with $490. Meanwhile, applications support contractors in southern Queensland and Perth are charging an average of $480, while those in Tasmania are charging $460. 

According to Hays, data skills are now in high demand as are skills to clean and structure the vast amounts of data digitised businesses can now access. As such, database administrators across Australia are typically charging over $740 a day, except in Sydney and regional NSW where the pay is a lower $650. The ACT, meanwhile, sits at the top end of database administrator rates with $800. 

ACT is also where it’s at for network engineers and administrators as the daily contractor rate sits at a handsome $960 per day. In contrast, for the majority of Australians, roughly between $720 and $750 is what these contractor roles can expect to gain around the rest of Australia. 

Network architects and infrastructure architects can also expect to receive maximum coin in ACT, where the average daily rate sits at around $1,200 a day. 

In Sydney, these roles can garner $1,150 and $1,100 per day, respectively, but only $950 for each in regional NSW. 

In Darwin and Adelaide, these roles are typically charged at $1,040 a day. However, for the majority of Australia, including Melbourne, Perth, Tasmania and southern Queensland, network architects and infrastructure architects are charging an average of $1,000.  

Perth is the place to be for infrastructure managers, where the typical daily rate sits at $1,000 per day. Meanwhile, fees across the rest of Australia average around $850, except in ACT where it sits at a slightly higher fee of $920. 

Looking ahead, the Australian Tech Council, who were quoted in the report, said there are currently 935,000 Australians working in technology jobs across the country, an increase of 8 per cent from 2022. However, to meet demand, this needs to grow to 1.2 million by 2030 to meet Australia’s expected digital needs over the next decade. High-need industries now include local government, health, infrastructure, utilities and mining. 

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