Analysis: Grand Rapids among worst-paying cities for IT administrators

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IT administrators in the Grand Rapids area are among the worst paid in the country, according to a recent study.

An analysis from Spanning found IT administrators in the Grand Rapids-Wyoming metropolitan area earn an adjusted median annual wage of $74,913. Out of all large metros in the study, Grand Rapids ranked as the third worst.

Comparatively, St. Louis, Missouri, ranked as the best-paying large metro for IT administrators with an adjusted median annual wage of $100,308 and an unadjusted median wage of $91,280. The region employs 4,240 IT administrators and the cost of living is 9% below the national average.

The New Orleans-Metairie, Louisiana, metro ranked as the worst-paying larger metro for IT administrators with a median adjusted wage of $70,988 and an unadjusted wage of $66,800. The area employs 680 IT administrators and the cost of living is 5.9% below the national average.

Summary of Grand Rapids data compared to national average

  • Adjusted median wage for IT administrators: $74,913 ($83,510 nationally)
  • Unadjusted median wage for IT administrators: $69,070 ($83,510 nationally)
  • Median wage for all workers: $37,410 ($39,810 nationally)
  • Number of IT administrators: 890 (354,450 nationally)
  • Cost of living: 7.8% below average

Methodology

To find which metro areas offer the best salaries for IT administrators, researchers at Spanning analyzed median wage and employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2019 Occupational Employment Statistics.

All median wages were adjusted for the location’s relative cost of living, based on the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis Regional Price Parity. For reference, the ranking also includes the unadjusted median wages of IT administrators and all workers in the metro area, the total number of IT administrators employed, and the cost of living relative to the national average.

The metro areas also were categorized into groups based on population: small (100,000-349,999), midsize (350,000-999,999) and large (1,000,000 or more).

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