With computer technology changing at a feverish pace, corporations rely on computer programming analysts to ensure that their software and computer programs meet their needs. Computer programming analysts assess the information and systems requirements of various departments and then work with computer programmers to develop the necessary applications. They earn starting salaries averaging just above $40,000 annually.
Starting Salary and Qualifications:
Average starting -- or entry-level -- salaries for computer programming analysts were $41,000 as of 2013, according to the job site Simply Hired. Glassdoor also reported lower-end salaries in the $41,000 to $45,000 range. Computer programming analysts usually have bachelor's degrees in computer programming, systems analysis, management information systems or business -- and knowledge of computer programs such as COBOL, C++, Visual Basic and Kronos. Some with associate degrees may get jobs if they have at least two years of experience in computer programming or programming analysis. Other essential requirements include attention to detail and analytical, concentration and troubleshooting skills.
Starting Salary by Region:
In 2013, average starting salaries for computer programming analysts only varied significantly in the South region, according to Simply Hired, where they earned the highest starting salaries of $64,000 in Washington, D.C., and the lowest of $32,000 in Mississippi. In the Northeast, they earned between $37,000 and $49,000 per year, respectively, in Maine and Massachusetts. Those in the Midwest made $32,000 to $43,000 per year, respectively, in South Dakota and Minnesota, the lowest and highest salaries in that region. Computer programming analysts in the West earned the highest starting salaries in Alaska and California and the lowest in Montana -- $46,000 and $33,000, respectively.
Computer programmers, who often work with computer programming analysts, earned the highest annual salaries of $113,760 in the animal slaughter and processing industry as of May 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. They also earned above-average salaries working for deep sea and coastal transportation companies -- $95,800 versus an industry average of $78,260 for computer programmers. Computer programming analysts may also earn higher starting and average salaries in these two industries. Large companies may also pay computer programming analysts higher starting salaries because they have the revenue bases to support higher salaries.
The BLS doesn't report job opportunities for computer programming analysts. It does project a 12-percent increase in jobs for computer programmers in the next decade -- about average, compared to the 14-percent growth rate for all positions. Jobs for computer programming analysts may also grow at an average clip since they work with computer programmers. Job opportunities may be more plentiful in computer consulting companies, because computer companies are becoming more likely to outsource these types of services.