What is a good salary these days?

(33 Posts)
Gloria1969 Fri 07-Feb-14 18:01:04

Hi to you all,
I posted on here the other day and now want to get your views on what constitutes a good salary these days.
I am a Programme Manager within the IT sector, working within Local Government. I am seeing a lot of jobs of £60K + but expect these would come with little or no flexibility.
I earn £40K for 4 long days and take Fridays off.
Is there anyone else out there willing to share their work pattern and earnings so that I can stop worrying that I am the poor relation?
I am not greedy but due to government pay freezes I haven't had a payrise in more than 4 years and it hurts.
Please help!

Making some assumptions, that you are the only earning adult in a house with 2 young kids, your 40K puts you in the top 35% of household earnings.
You can put your actual data in here but your salary is WAY above average.

LauraBridges Fri 07-Feb-14 18:22:50

These questions are never easy to answer as it's all relative. Someone on £20k will be doing better than the £14k a year just above minimum wage person. There is a thread on high paid women at present and the numbers are pretty big on there.

I do suggest that anyone who wants more money goes off and makes it. There is nothing special about many of us who have done that - who eat what we kill in effect and generate our own earnings and it's huge fun.

chanie44 Fri 07-Feb-14 18:23:08

I earn a similar salary with the same work pattern as you, also public sector with no pay rises for a few years.

I do feel the pinch myself but I still feel fortunate as I know that I earn more than many people in my organisation and indeed many of the people I pass in the street every day. It's not in a braggy kind of way, but I know some of those people work much harder than I do for less.

krazipan Fri 07-Feb-14 18:24:42

I work in the public sector and I earn£28k pa for mon-fri 0830-5.

Oodlesofoodles Fri 07-Feb-14 18:24:43

MyFTE is 22k and I'm on a .5 post. Also local gov and no flexibility other than working pt which tbh doesn't work well in this role.

NaffOrf Fri 07-Feb-14 18:25:42

Seriously? £40K is a good salary. I'm amazed you have to ask. Sure there are people who earn more, but the vast majority of people earn a lot less.

How long are your long days?

Gloria1969 Fri 07-Feb-14 18:32:05

My long days are about 10 hours work each taking everything into account. I do sometimes have to do some work at weekends but from home which is fine.
I really, really appreciate your responses. I know how lucky I am and your responses have confirmed to me that in my heart I treasure the flexibility I have currently so I will stay put for now and put my own ambitions on the side for now. I think as I live in a very affluent area where everyone is successful that I am a little guilty of comparing myself to them and of course they are not a representative cross-section of our whole society.
Thanks to you all. x

BrownSauceSandwich Fri 07-Feb-14 18:35:27

I just don't think life's that simple. I earn £30k/yr for a 37 hour week, in a job that requires me to have a PhD AND a whole fuck load of transferable, technical skills. I look round my colleagues... Scientists, programmers, engineers... And I know that most of them could and would be paid twice as much or more in other sectors, but we choose not to. Our relatively small salaries come with great working conditions: good holidays; genuine autonomy; generous leave and flexi-time; good pensions and so on. I took a pay cut to work there, and it was about the best decision I've ever made. I'm not saying everything's always perfect, and I am seriously pissed off about how my salary has degraded in comparison to the cost of living, but I'm not ready to give up the rest of the benefits of my job... Not quite yet!

If you're really thinking about moving jobs, do your sums on how much it would cost to pay into a pension equivalent to your public sector one, and don't forget to knock it off the £20k pay rise. Then you have to decide whether that extra money is worth more to you than your flexibility.

ZakuroFujiwara Fri 07-Feb-14 18:36:49

I think that's a good but not stellar salary. I earn £64k for 07:00 - 14:00 4 days a week in an IT related role in a large company in London. I am very lucky to have secured the role but it IS a pay cut from my last role to compensate for the odd hours I negotiated. I think that's just the way the cookie crumbles though - they get me realtively cheaply (compared to market) and I get to pick my children up every day whilst still earning.

AfricanExport Fri 07-Feb-14 18:38:51

40k for a Programme Manager in IT is NOT a good salary for that job. I understand it's a good salary but not for the job you are doing. How many projects are involved? I would expect at least 60k in a perm role.

Where are you based? I'm talking London...

Toomuch2young Fri 07-Feb-14 18:39:01

I have a professional, qualified job and work full time for 24k. Long hours often 45-50 hrs per week. However that calculator tells me 70% are worse off than me so maybe shouldn't be complaining after all!

Is hard when friends report 40- 60k for less work though!!

Gloria1969 Fri 07-Feb-14 18:43:28

I'm based in the Midlands, African Export.
TooMuch2young - that seems like too little for the effort you have to make - what work do you do?
WOW ZakuroFujiwara - that is an amazing achievement but of course being in London everything is expensive.
Thanks BrownSauceSandwich - I can empathise as I have friends who are similar to you.

gadgetyuppie Fri 07-Feb-14 18:49:50

40k for a Programme Manager in IT is NOT a good salary for that job.

I would agree with this.

The real answer to your question depends on location, level of experience, and sector.

Someone working from home 3 days a week, in office 2 days in a rural north England location for a public sector body doing an IT Prog Man role isn't going to be close to earning the same as an IT Prog Man managing IT infrastructure projects for a financial services firm in London. It's an extreme comparison but a good point I think.

Without giving too much away about my own position, I'm in a Senior Project Management role within financial services (basically project management with mentoring of other PMs, plus some ad hoc programme level duties). I'm on £60k basic in a city that's not London (not even close in terms of size). And I have a good pension, lots of flexibility to WFH, and bonus. In relative terms I'm actually underpaid slightly because we have mid-level PMs coming in at the £50k - £75k bracket (that's the banding). This is all managing technology projects, btw.

So I'd guess at underpaid for what you do, but that's with the caveat that the location/sector variables really matter.

gadgetyuppie Fri 07-Feb-14 18:52:39

NaffOrf it really isn't a "good salary" in market terms though, I think that's the more critical factor.

It might be "good" vs what your family earns, or what my DH earns, or the bloke next door earns, but each role comes with its own requirements in terms of flexibility, hours, training requirements, level of responsibility, etc... so "good" is only relative to the market rate.

The OP shouldn't consider herself to have an acceptable salary vs the average Joe - she should compare herself against peers.

And I maintain that it's likely she's underpaid, from my own experience in a very similar role.

vaseoftulips Fri 07-Feb-14 18:56:23

I think £40k for four days (albeit long ones) in the Midlands is pretty good to be honest.

DH works in IT in private sector in a specialist role probably at a similar level to you. He earns £40k + £15k bonus but he works his absolute nuts off for that. He is often working until 8pm at night and sometimes does stuff over the weekend. His last payrise was in 2008. He has no benefits or pension even though he works in a well recognised (but privately owned) company in his sector. We're in the M4 corridor so housing is more expensive too.

I think you could earn more but agree with BrownSauce on that payrise being hoovered up by the extra you'd pay in pension, etc.

EBearhug Fri 07-Feb-14 21:33:41

£40K is a good salary. It's not that great for IT, IMO.

Have you checked payscale.com?

LauraBridges Fri 07-Feb-14 22:13:19

Women do undersell themselves and often think they are well paid when they aren't whereas men ask for more pay rises and think they are worth more than they are. As a result they receive more money. A good few mumsnetters are on over £100k and some well over.

KitKat1985 Tue 18-Mar-14 11:09:57

I have a masters degree in healthcare, and work in a demanding job in mental health nursing. I work evenings, weekends and bank holidays etc. I've been threated and physically assaulted countless times. I earn £25,000 PA. No pay rise in years and bills etc all going up, along with pension contributions. I like the job but the public sector isn't the easy option a lot of people think it is. And I know I earn a lot more than a lot of my colleagues.

The problem with these threads is the only respondents tend to be people with white-collar jobs and reasonably large salaries, since Mumsnetters with non white-collar jobs tend to be intimidated by these threads. To be honest in a time where a lot of people are earning around the minimum wage, even in reasonably skilled roles, you might need to re-think your expectations, if you think £40k a year, hours that suit, and comfortable working conditions is hard done by. I used to use degree level statistics to do the stats for a research company and earnt £9 an hour.

TheArticFunky Tue 18-Mar-14 12:24:47

It's all relative. It depends on where you live, whether you own or rent, if you have children etc.

£40k per annum with minimal commuting costs with a £60k mortgage and school aged children would make you very well off indeed.

Move that job into the South East factor in £400+ per month commuting costs, £180k mortgage and a child in nursery and you are probably having to resort to using credit cards to pay for the essentials from time to time.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Tue 18-Mar-14 12:30:25

I don't think you are being well paid enough for what you do.

Average salary for an IT Programme Manager excluding London based jobs (which pulls up the average significantly) is £67,500.

I know a lot of people who work in IT, DH is in the sector and I used to be before I gave up work. £40k is pretty low.
The project DH is on at the moment, the Programme Manager is on a rate close to his - so £100k plus. That is with 2 days a week working from home, 3 days on site hours 8.30-6pm.

mellicauli Wed 19-Mar-14 15:08:14

If you have a final salary pension scheme you need to work out how much it would cost to replace that. When I felt hard done by,I did the sums and realise I would need to earn an extra �20-25k to fund that kind of pension if I paid into a private pension. Then I didn't feel so bad!

Chunderella Sun 30-Mar-14 09:15:50

If you do 4 long days, is that full time hours? If it is, you should presumably still be paid the full time salary for your role and it oughtn't to make any difference, though I know in practice it sometimes does. You do sometimes 'pay' elsewhere for flexibility.

Otherwise, I agree there's no such thing as a 'good' salary really. It varies a huge amount by region, and it's possible to still be earning too little to manage on but be better paid than everyone else in your field, or be on a massive wage yet still have an employer who's giving you much less than the going rate.

ArtFine Sun 30-Mar-14 09:27:45

I think it depends a lot on where you live too. If you are in London, 40K is not a good salary (rent is too expensive). Whereas, in other parts of the country you'd be quite well off. Obviously it also depends on other outgoings like child care etc

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