Why Are DevOps Salaries so High? (Over $130,000 / year)

In 2022, the average salary in DevOps is well over $130,000 per year. Of course, that's the salary in rich countries like the US. But the thing is, it does not matter where you are located in the world. DevOps practices are very easy to implement from a distance. Since it's a remote-friendly job, companies from the US will hire you no matter what country you're from, if you can prove you have the skills.

Image showing average DevOps salaries in 2022
Source: https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/devops-engineer-salary-SRCH_KO0,15.htm

No skills? No problem. Are you passionate about software, computers, and technology? That's all it takes. If you have the passion, you can go from zero to hero in just a few months. Do you feel like that's a long time? Well, think about this: you could be earning an average of $10,000 per month next year. How does that sound? Now think about the alternative. What if you continue to work at your current job? Will you make $10,000 per month next year? That time will pass anyway. So use it wisely. Even with one or two hours per day, you can still advance your career.

In this, article we’ll look at 5 reasons why DevOps salaries are so high.

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5 Reasons Why DevOps Salaries Are High

But back to our story. Why are DevOps jobs so incredibly well-paid? There are five big reasons. These add up and drive salaries higher, and higher. Let's start with reason number one:

1. People with DevOps Skills Are Rare

If you have many friends working in IT-related fields, you will see many are developers, others are software testers, and so on. But you'll rarely find someone specializing in DevOps practices.

And this creates a special need in the industry. It’s hard to find people with the required skill set for DevOps. Imagine the main DevOps guy/girl leaving a company. It will be hard to replace him, or her. The company won’t have hundreds of people applying for the DevOps position. So they will have to hunt for a replacement. And what is the best way to find someone capable? Look for a person that already implements DevOps practices at some other company. If they've worked there in the last 12 months, they probably know what they're doing.

And we get to reason number 2.

2. Companies Need to Compete to Win Over Rare Employees

How do you motivate someone to leave another company and join yours? Well, what do all employees want? More money! So company X will basically try to steal employees from company Y. They might say "Hey, we noticed you get $10,000 per month at your current job. Want to join us? We can offer $11,000 per month." And this strategy is what led to higher and higher salaries.

Now let's get to reason number 3.

3. DevOps Helps Companies Make More Money

Companies that make software and online services make a lot of money. We already know this because we constantly hear it in the news. They tell us about their millions and billions of dollars. That's the glamorous, impressive side of the story. But what they don't tell us is what an absurd amount of money these companies also spend. 

It costs a lot to develop, test, and deliver software and services. And DevOps practices considerably lower these costs. Imagine if it costs a company 10 billion dollars per year to create and deliver its services. Even if DevOps would lower the costs by just 10%, the company would still save up to 1 billion dollars! That's a lot of money. They basically get 1 billion dollars of extra profit this year. Who wouldn't pay good money to employees that can increase profits?

Now let's get to reason number 4.

4. DevOps Helps Companies Save Time

It might seem that companies only care about profits. But they actually care about time as well. The sooner they get software and services to market, the sooner they can sell them.

Think about how most cars were built in the past. Hundreds of human workers in a factory. But humans are slow. Humans cannot work for a long time; they get tired. So there was a shift in the industry. Nowadays, it's mostly robots that do the work. Robots can work faster. They can work for 24 hours straight. And they don't ask for a salary.

A similar thing happened in software development. Many things were done manually in the past. But DevOps automated a lot of those processes. Now companies can build software faster. They can test it faster. And they can release it to the public faster.

Imagine it takes Boeing around 6 months to build their big airplanes. And you tell them you have discovered a better process. It will take them 1 month to build if you give them your smart idea. Now wouldn't they pay 100 million dollars for that, if the idea does indeed work? They would pay without blinking.

Now let's get to the last reason in our list.

5. DevOps Requires a Long List of Skills

Most jobs usually require you to specialize in a narrow, specific area. A Java developer will certainly need to master that programming language. And maybe they'll need to know a couple of other things closely related to that. DevOps on the other hand, requires everything but the kitchen sink. Here are just a few examples of things required in DevOps:

  • Linux and server administration.
  • Cloud computing services like AWS, Microsoft Azure, or Google Cloud.
  • Source code management tools, such as Git, GitHub, and GitLab.
  • Tools for automation. For example: infrastructure as code, configuration management, continuous integration, continuous delivery, and software testing tools.
  • Tools that log and monitor applications and infrastructure.
  • Container technologies like Docker.
  • Container orchestrators like Kubernetes.

That's quite the list. And it doesn't even cover everything. Furthermore, a person responsible for DevOps must also know a bit about programming languages. And they also need to have very good communication skills. They're the bridge between the Dev and Ops teams, Development and Operations. So they need to ensure these teams can collaborate effectively.

You can imagine that it takes time to get all of these skills. And people who invested that time are not going to work for a low salary. Naturally, they ask for more money as the years go by.

So there you have it. These are the five big reasons why salaries are so high. Let's mention them again to recap:

  1. People with DevOps skills are hard to find.
  2. Companies need to compete with each other to hire them.
  3. DevOps helps companies earn more money.
  4. And DevOps also helps companies work faster.
  5. Finally, people in DevOps need to develop a long list of skills. And they'll want to get paid for this effort.

Now what do you think? Do you want to get in on this? $130,000 per year can buy quite a comfortable life. Not to mention it can also buy a few well-deserved vacations.

As we mentioned in our intro, it can be done. You can learn DevOps. All that's required is a passion for computers and technology. You'll need that passion to remain motivated. As far as the skills are concerned, those just require time. You can learn if you put in the time.


DevOps could be an excellent career choice depending on your interests and aspirations. DevOps is a rapidly expanding field offering a plethora of opportunities and high salaries. Given the mounting demand for DevOps professionals, it is certainly worth considering if you have a passion for technology and enjoy working in a collaborative and fast-paced environment. If you're intrigued, I recommend exploring our DevOps Learning Path. Best of luck!

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