Tech Sector Salaries Continue to Grow in Softening Market

Skills shortages and inflation drive sizable salary increases across Canada’s tech sector according to TAP Network’s 2023 Tech Salary and Total Rewards Survey

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, September 19, 2023–(BUSINESS WIRE)–TAP Network’s 2023 Tech Salary and Total Rewards Survey, reporting Canadian tech sector compensation and policy data from 204 companies, including salary and incentive data for 30,600 incumbents (individual employees) across 234 jobs, shows balanced headcount growth for the sector and continued salary pressure in key jobs where skills shortages persist.

The projected salary increase budget for 2024 is 4.3%. While still above the 5-years preceding, it is below the 2023 actual salary increase budget of 4.5%, and is down from the 2022 high of 6.5%.

“Business performance was a key factor in setting 2023 salary increase budgets but so were inflation and employee retention,” said Stephanie Hollingshead, CEO of TAP Network. “The data is showing us that new hire pay pressure has reduced compared to 12 months ago, and is currently isolated to high demand roles and more senior or specialized positions. Pay for new hires is still competitive and positioned similarly to those already in the role. With this external pressure, companies are making targeted market and internal equity adjustments for existing employees.”

The median salary increase for employees who stayed in the same position two years in a row remained high at 7.5%, indicating that organizations are still relying on off-cycle pay increases to address retention concerns, counteroffers, market adjustments and internal equity.

Hottest Skills and Jobs

The skills identified as the most difficult to recruit across sub sectors are Leadership and Senior Level skills, Software and Application Developers, Full Stack Developer and Dev-Ops Developers.

The jobs with the highest rate of year over year median base salary increases all had increases above 7.5%, with four positions at 10% or greater – DevOps Developer/Engineer (Fully Competent), Accounting Clerk (Senior/Lead), Data Scientist (Intermediate) and UI/UX Designer (Entry).

Top 10 Hot Jobs

Common incumbent (same employees) year over year median base salary increase percent by job

DevOps Developer/Engineer – Fully Competent


Accounting Clerk – Senior/Lead


Data Scientist – Intermediate


UI/UX Designer – Entry


Hardware/Electrical Engineer – Entry


Game Designer – Intermediate


Accounting Clerk – Intermediate


Implementation Specialist


Technical Customer Support Representative – Intermediate


Production – Coordinator – Film


Note: Represents the same organizations participating in the survey two years in row, matching the same employees to the same job year over year. Jobs with less than 10 organizations in the sample were excluded.

Fastest Growing Benefits in Canada’s tech sector

Perquisites and benefits like RRSP matching, paid time off to volunteer and condensed work weeks are some of the fastest growing perquisites and benefits in the sector. Both RRSP matching and family leave top-up benefits have steadily grown over the years as a benefit offering in Canada’s tech sector and have reached majority with over 50% now offering these benefits.

Competitive Advantage from Remote and Hybrid Work Arrangements

“Remote and hybrid work arrangements continue to dominate Canada’s tech sector,” stated Hollingshead. “According to this year’s survey participants, 38% of companies are operating fully remotely and 42% are operating with hybrid work models. People and Culture leaders are telling us that these flexible work arrangements are providing effective competitive advantages in attracting and retaining talent in roles where labour shortages persist.”

Headcount Projections

Planned headcount growth for this year and next has cooled to 10%. There are, however, significant variations across subsectors. Clean Tech, Life Sciences and Technology Services/Consulting subsectors are all projecting significantly higher growth of 13% – 20% and VFX/Animation is projecting significantly lower growth of 3% – 5%.

Survey Expansion

TAP Network’s released 2023 Salary and Total Rewards Survey continued its expansion in 2023, with growth in geographic coverage, subsector data and positions surveyed. With 50% and 100% incumbent growth in Ontario and Quebec respectively, the survey now reports national and regional data across BC, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.

With 60 New Media positions reporting data, the 2023 survey provides reliable national and regional datasets for VFX, Animation, and Gaming / Interactive and Digital Entertainment jobs.

Ten new positions were added to the survey in 2023, including technical roles such as Senior Producer- Gaming and Senior Technical Artist and sales and marketing roles such as Demand Generation Manager and Sales Development Representative.

For more details and specific salary figures, purchase a full version of the 2023 Tech Salary and Total Rewards Survey online at

About TAP Network’s Tech Salary and Total Rewards Survey

TAP Network partners with Mercer to produce an annual salary and total rewards survey focused on the Canadian tech sector, reporting on local and national salaries, total compensation, detailed policy data, and more. Survey participants include startups, scale ups and large multinationals representing a broad cross section of subsectors such as software products, AI, clean tech, hardware design and manufacturing, VFX, animation and more. Survey submissions were collected in Spring 2023 and results were published in August 2023.

Learn more about TAP Network’s Salary and Total Rewards Survey here.

About TAP Network

TAP Network is a non-profit association for People and Culture professionals in Canada’s tech sector, providing members with access to tech sector data, industry experts and an inclusive peer community to drive innovation, collaboration and results. Through programs and events, TAP Network fosters peer-to-peer connections and collaboration that enable learning and knowledge sharing. The association’s 900+ members lead and influence the People and Culture practices at 250 tech companies spanning numerous subsectors, including ICT, VFX and animation, interactive and digital entertainment, cleantech, AI, life sciences and more. On October 24, 2024 TAP Network will be presenting Tech Talent North, Canada’s conference for People & Culture in tech.

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Stephanie Hollingshead
Tech and People Network
[email protected]

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