November 30, 2023

Press Release

PROTECH survey reveals record tech hiring in 16 years in South Florida

Tech workers report high willingness to change employers

| 3/16/2018

In PROTECH's 16th Annual South Florida Tech Leadership Survey and 14th Annual Tech Talent Workforce Survey, results which reveal the strongest ever economic outlook and hiring plans in survey history.  A record 92% of Tech workers report willingness to change employers with compensation and work-life balance as top motivators.

Fort Lauderdale, FL. Two surveys conducted by leading South Florida technology recruiting and staffing firm, PROTECH, reveal insight into the South Florida IT marketplace.

Economic and Hiring Outlook

Positive economic outlook, according to IT Leadership, is on the rise, with 67% perceiving the economy as getting stronger (a record number, up from 50% last year). Extensive tech hiring also planned, with 69% of Tech Management (up from 67% in 2017) reporting they will increase staff in 2018 – the highest ever reported in the 16-year survey.

“The record numbers we are seeing in positive economic outlook and in planned tech hiring serve as good indications of the strength of the tech industry in the South Florida market. The challenge continues to be an extremely tight tech labor market, not just here but in markets across the US that we serve,” said Deborah Vazquez, CEO of PROTECH.

Average budgets held steady at a 15% increase from last year (same increase as last year), with 67% of leadership reporting their budget is adequate compared to actual need.

IT Workforce

Retention of key tech staff continues to be a major concern for management, with 54% reporting being concerned about losing talented IT staff, and 46% reporting employee training and retention as a top priority this year.

Primary reasons cited for losing staff were compensation at 34% (down from 50%), work-life balance/long work hours at 33% (up from 0%), lack of career path at 21% (down from 50% last year) and company culture/work environment at 12% (up from 0%).

Employees stated the top reasons for leaving their current employment as compensation (40%), work-life balance/long work hours and benefits (tied at 12%), and corporate culture/work environment (11%). Key motivators for considering a new job further validated this with answers in same order of ranking: compensation, work-life balance/open PTO and a great company culture/work environment.

A record 92% of tech workers said they would leave their current employer for a better opportunity.  Although the top reason for leaving a current employer remained as compensation, this decreased as a factor (from 45% in 2017 to 40% in 2018).  Work-life balance and benefits both moved up from 9% in 2017 to 12% this year.

“Salaries have moved higher in recent years and continue to; it’s not too surprising to see employees start to put more value on a better work-life balance placing more weight on things like telecommuting and more generous vacation policies,” commented Vazquez. “It’s also promising to see that this year employers and tech workers seem to be more closely aligned as far as what retains them in a job. Last year employers did not recognize work-life balance as being a contributing factor to retention at all, and this year it came in as the second most important reason they see for losing staff at 33%, just after compensation at 34%.”

This is the third year in a row that work-life balance was listed as one of the top reasons for leaving a current employer. This is also the 2ndranked factor candidates weigh when considering a job offer, others include compensation, more involvement in decision making, strong leadership, quality healthcare, a promotion/new position title, 401K w/generous matching, and ongoing training/education.

Tech employees reported their top favorite perks as flextime/telecommuting (35%), and retirement/401K (12%), and equity and sign-on/retention/annual bonus (each at 9%).

Tech employees seriously considering moving out of Florida is down to 49% compared to 57% last year. Top two reasons listed for considering making a move were limited job market/lack of career advancement (41%), and cost of living too high (25%).

“South Florida is starting to show improvement in its ability to attract and retain key talent as indicated by less respondents looking to relocate. However, with nearly half of tech workers still considering an out-of-state move, more investment must be made to retain our valuable tech workers,” said Vazquez.

Top recommendations from IT Leadership to government to increase success of IT in South Florida included 1) Invest in continuous global marketing and branding of South Florida as a welcoming, resource-rich, talent-rich, accessible, tax-friendly, great-life-style region where tech business grows and flourishes 2) Invest in education and 3) Find ways to retain talented people in state.

For other Key Findings view full survey results:

2018 South Florida Technology Leadership Survey

2018 South Florida Tech Talent Survey

PROTECH surveyed over 1100 IT Director to CIO level executives for its 16th annual Tech Leadership Survey; and over 24,000 IT professionals for its 14th annual Tech Talent survey. All participants are located in the South Florida tri-county area.


PROTECH is a full-service firm specializing in technology recruitment and staffing solutions for top employers in the US.  Their seasoned team of IT recruiters have worked in the IT industry with high-growth start-ups to Fortune 500 companies. PROTECH’s clients have unmatched access to an extensive network of professionals and resources in the IT industry. For more information about how PROTECH can help you hire or get hired, please visit

Tags: employment

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