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Ann Arbor Tech Companies Think Creatively about Compensation

According to survey responses, a hybrid work environment is just one perk Ann Arbor’s companies are offering employees.

Ann Arbor continues to receive accolades as a great place to live and work. When it comes to attracting and retaining high-performing talent, the results from a recent survey of the region’s technology and software companies highlight compensation practices, trends, and opportunities that are common here.

Ann Arbor area technology companies responded to a survey conducted by Ann Arbor SPARK. The survey covered topics such as company size, employee roles, worker compensation, compensation of executive talent, and employee turnover. SPARK used the results of the survey to draw conclusions on salaries in the tech industry, which can inform compensation decisions at the individual company level. Job seekers may also find the data useful when evaluating offers and during compensation negotiations.

Key findings: 

  1. Most companies with tech-related employees in the Ann Arbor region have allowed their employees to work remotely at some point during the past year and plan to offer a hybrid work environment indefinitely. Nearly half of the companies surveyed predict the need for less office space in the Ann Arbor region in the future due to remote or hybrid work models. See Remote Work and Return to Work Plans for more information. 
  1. Traditional compensation and benefits like an annual salary, personal time off (PTO), parental leave, and health insurance are offered by nearly all tech companies surveyed. Less traditional benefits offered by tech companies in the Ann Arbor region include adoption benefits, commuter benefits, company outings/retreats, hybrid work environment, flexible work hours, remote work stipend, student loan repayment assistance, wellness stipend, and many others. In recent years, local tech companies have enhanced their benefit offerings to provide more flexibility, free parking, expanded health and childcare benefits, additional PTO days, and more. See Tech Employee Compensation: Benefits for more information. 
  1. Salaries vary widely in tech-related positions throughout the Ann Arbor region depending on the level of experience and education required. Within similar experience and education categories, salary discrepancies exist between the companies surveyed and can often be attributed to the company’s age and/or size. Salaries paid to software developers, engineers, and programmers seem to be the most competitive in the Ann Arbor region based on survey responses. See Tech Employee Compensation: Salary Ranges for more information.
  1. In 2022, most tech companies surveyed (78 percent) are worried about employee turnover which is in stark contrast with the survey results collected in 2018 prior to the pandemic and the “great resignation.” In 2018, most tech companies surveyed in the Ann Arbor region were not worried about employee turnover (81 percent). The pandemic intensified the competition for tech-related talent due to the normalization of remote work opportunities, among other factors. Pay, relocation, and the desire for more remote work flexibility were among the most common factors cited by employees leaving the companies surveyed. See Tech Employee Turnover and Talent Shortages for more information.
  1. Talent attraction, recruitment, and hiring concerns continue to impact tech companies in the Ann Arbor region. Most companies surveyed (74 percent) are concerned about tech-related talent in general, and nearly 80 percent are specifically concerned about attracting, recruiting, hiring, and retaining software developers, engineers, and programmers. Mid to senior-level positions seem to be especially hard to fill based on the survey results; however, some companies are finding relief by recruiting nationally or even globally for remote software development-related positions. See Tech Employee Turnover and Talent Shortages for more information.