The Tech Labor Market Is Shifting: 3 Roles That Will Require More Budget From Comp Teams in 2025

Pave Data Lab
June 25, 2024
min read
James Jennings

Every year, compensation teams work with finance to create a budget for the upcoming year’s headcount. While most teams can tightly budget for merit cycles and hiring, earmarking a budget for “hot jobs” is much less predictable because: 

  1. Cost to employ ≠ cost to hire: The cost to hire new talent is the best leading indicator for job markets. Even if you’re leveraging real-time data, referencing existing employees doesn’t tell you what other companies are willing to spend to hire your key talent today
  2. Survey data operates on a lag: Comp teams already must “age” data by 3-5% to true it up to market standards, which is a hand-wavey practice.

Ad hoc band updates can erode trust between Talent, Compensation, Finance, and functional leaders. By the time a compensation team has aggregated, shared, and aged the most recent survey submissions, they’re skating to where the puck was – not where it’s going. 

But, with insight into what the market is paying for new hires today, comp leaders can better predict the compensation strategy they’ll need to stay competitive tomorrow. 

Stay ahead of the competition with real-time compensation data

With Pave, companies can access real-time compensation data to make decisions ahead of the market. Pave’s Market Data provides aggregated compensation data from global HRIS’, so companies can get a full picture of base, variable, and equity pay without the survey lag. 

Beginning today, Market Data includes a beta of Offer Insights powered by Greenhouse, which gives companies insights from over 1 million real-time offers. 

Early indicators from Offer Insights are already helping inform future-looking comp strategies. 

To help you plan ahead, here are a few job categories to watch in the second half of 2024.

3 roles with rising salaries in 2024

1. Machine Learning 

We’ve all heard the stories of ML Engineers getting ridiculous offers. It’s easy to dismiss them as outliers, but by combining Pave’s data with Greenhouse offer data, we can see that these stories are not outliers. ML Engineer comp has risen 25% between Q1 2023 and Q1 2024, with the 75th percentile eclipsing $260k! If you want to retain your ML Engineers, buckle up – it’s going to be expensive. 💰

2. Recruiting

Talent hires are subject to market forces more than almost any other role. So, while it may be great to see markets and investments bouncing back, hiring recruiters is only going to get more competitive. Since recruiters are on the front lines, they’ll be the first to tell you A+ talent won’t be cheap.

But you don't have to take their word for it — offer benchmarks speak for themselves. Recruiting offers have ticked up 56% since Q3 2023, which is a significant shift compared to Recruiting’s close relative, HR generalists, which only saw an 8% increase in March 2024. Seems like the great “diSAASter” of 2022 may finally have come to an end, and teams are ready to start hiring again. 🥁

3. Facilities & Office Management 

If you’re planning your Return to Office initiative, make sure you’re analyzing costs for Facilities and Office Managers.

As more and more tech companies have begun mandating employees return back to the office, we’ve seen the demand for workplace hiring spike. Facilities and Office Management roles, in particular, have increased 15% since Q1, outpacing the market by 20%. 

Want more info on offer data trends? Download our report to browse more trends we’re seeing in Offer Insights. 

Prepare for compensation volatility in the world of AI

We’re witnessing a change in the labor market in real time. It’s easy to conclude that certain roles are outpacing the market. And it’s not wrong – but it buries the lede. With the rise of AI and the return of tech (both in the office and in the market), we’re seeing wage volatility for roles that we once considered stable. 

To stay ahead of the curve, HR teams need to proactively align themselves and their stakeholders around evolving compensation trends by:

  1. Updating compensation team processes: Historically, compensation teams have reacted to escalations from Talent & hiring managers. Now, with offer data, compensation teams can proactively evaluate compensation for key initiatives, like AI talent strategy, merit budgeting, and return to office. Incorporating leading market indicators into compensation strategies enables compensation teams to proactively identify risks and communicate with key stakeholders.

  2. Grounding decisions in data with finance: Most finance leaders don’t want to increase spend outside of cycles, but understanding offers insights can help them weigh which initiatives will be put at risk if talent acquisition and retention objectives aren’t met.

  3. Educating hiring managers: Engineering teams are used to compensating all tech at a premium. Offers data and HRIS data indicate an expected wage acceleration in Machine Learning and softening benchmarks for roles that have historically been paid a premium (software engineering generalists, product, design). 

Use multiple data sources to shift from reactive to proactive

Recent shifts in the market have shown that compensation teams can no longer rely solely on survey data. Looking forward, successful teams will blend multiple sources to get the full picture, including real-time HRIS data, equity management system data, and offer data. 

With a more comprehensive picture, compensation teams can successfully partner internally with key teams to launch strategies that help them compete in a volatile market.  

Get more information on Offer Insights from Pave and Greenhouse and browse offer trends at

Learn more about Pave’s end-to-end compensation platform
James Jennings
Director, GTM Strategy

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