How much do IT specialists earn in Kazakhstan

Specialists from the field of IT receive an income equitable with the salary of top managers of companies, and sometimes even more
Фото: 10.08.2022 1620

In the age of digital technologies, the profession of the present and future is an IT specialist. About what problems the domestic market is experiencing due to the shortage of strong personnel in this area, and why it is not always possible to "rake in millions" as a programmer, the correspondent of the learned.

According to, the total number of vacancies for 2021 increased by 52 percent compared to 2020. Instead, the salaries of specialists in this field have also increased. To date, employers on average are ready to pay a salary of 220 thousand tenge to novice specialists.

We note in advance that, speaking about specialists from the IT sphere, we include in the list and representatives of related areas, such as: programmers, system administrators, developers of mobile applications.

Relatively high salaries are received by system administrators whose average salary starts from 500 thousand tenge and programmers, they receive from 400 thousand tenge.

According to analysts, a sharp demand for specialists in the field of IT appeared relatively recently. The pandemic and related quarantine measures have made their own adjustments to our usual way of life and forced most large companies and employers to reconsider their approaches to managing businesses and employees. If we start from the data of IDF Eurasia in Kazakhstan, we observe the following picture: in 2021, IT specialists became 55 percent more popular than in 2019, the traditional presence of IT departments in financial and telecommunications campaigns ceased to be a matter of course, and maintaining the activities of the staff of "IT specialists" became the highest priority due to restrictions.

At the same time, such departments increasingly began to appear in the field of trade, catering and various household and social services.

However, according to experts, this trend will strengthen the already existing shortage of personnel, forcing companies to compete more strongly for specialists from this field.

The issue of shortage of personnel and their training

Every year in Kazakhstan, on average, more than 5,000-6,000 students graduate in IT. According to Bolatzhan Kumalakov, Dean of the Faculty of Information Technologies at Astana IT University, graduates in the direction of IT work in all spheres, and not only as IT specialists. The most common professions include business analysts, entrepreneurs - start-ups, software developers, administrators.

It is important that IT graduates not only go to work for someone, but also create jobs themselves through start-ups.

"Based on the experience of AITU, the number of vacancies in the IT industry at the moment is greater than the total number of IT specialists and students studying in IT specialties. And this trend will continue for several more years," the dean said.

The average duration of training in universities for an "IT specialist" is three years. The main blocks of training are theoretical training, technological stack and industrial experience. (STEC is a set of tools used when working in projects and includes programming languages, frameworks, database management systems). The theory in this case includes the main sections of calculations, mathematics, electromagnetism.

The most interesting issue besides wages is the issue of learning difficulty. Unfortunately, contrary to the popular belief that you can easily study to be an IT specialist yourself, the facts from real life give completely different arguments on this score.

"To have an IT education is a calling. The difficulty here is determined by the personal interests and character of the student. Writing a program requires a high concentration of attention and a desire to create something new, unique. Perhaps, an IT specialist should be in love with his work, then training and work in this area will be easy," Kumalakov said.

But "IT specialists will not be united by universities". Often, most applicants entering this specialty already have a specific idea of the activities of their role. According to independent programmer Adambayev Ablaikhan, special higher education is not always a key factor in the development of their competencies.

"Before entering the university, I had some experience in programming for writing simple programs and creating websites. If we are talking about the fact that you want to deal exclusively with one of the areas in this field, it will be enough to gain experience from more experienced colleagues. As a rule, people come to our sphere with certain knowledge. I also want to note that the concept of "IT specialist" or programmer is very stretchy. In addition to one integral direction, we are divided into Front-end, Back-end developers, Full-stack and others. I am not even saying that there are many different programming languages, and each of them has its own specialist," Ablaikhan said.

However, given the high demand in the labor market and the relatively good salaries offered, the specialists themselves are in no hurry to occupy their office chair in companies. There are several reasons for this. The first, as noted by the experts themselves, is the banal convenience of the place of work. Many "IT specialists" usually take several projects and lead them remotely, which in turn follows to the next point.

"Outsourcing" is more opportunity to earn. Conducting several projects at the same time, specialists usually receive a total income equitable with the salary of top managers of companies, and sometimes more. What determines the size of the salary of specialists? Given that in the labor market the demand for "IT specialists" is greater than the specialists themselves, there are many companies ready to increase the remuneration of a potential candidate. The reason is clear.

Banal absence of applicants. As in any profession, the size of the salary depends on the qualifications of the specialist himself.

What's up with the trends?

To date, the most sought-after specialists are the growth of DevOps-direction and cybersecurity in development (approx. DevOps is a methodology for automating the technological processes of building, configuring and deploying software), since the world has written many programs and applications that need to be maintained, stabilized and protected in the face of a growing frequency of cyber attacks.

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