Bonuses Boost Compensation in Risk Technology

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Risk professionals in software and technology earned a 7 percent average increase in total compensation in 2005 as an 11 percent rise in bonuses bulked up a 3 percent bump in salaries.

Those with 7 to 15 years of experience saw their bonuses grow the most dramatically - by 17 percent - while professionals in their first six years earned bonuses 10 percent higher than in 2004. Risk professionals with more than 16 years on the job received bonuses that were six percent higher. The figures were compiled in a survey by the search firm Risk Talent Associates.

For RTA President Michael Woodrow, the bottom line is "Technologists who focus on risk management continue to be highly valued" at investment banks, asset management firms and risk system vendors. He sees companies continuing to seek specialists in risk technology, especially those who have expertise in trading, financial instruments, quant, and C++ or Java. Such demand will continue, Woodrow believes, because risk management and risk culture are going "mainstream," driving a need for technology groups to incorporate risk models into their business's decision-making tools.

Bonuses made up two-thirds of the compensation of managing directors and chief risk officers, and 70 percent of the compensation of partners and presidents at risk technology and software firms. RTA's survey also found that New York-based professionals earned the highest compensation globally, and that those specializing in enterprise risk management commanded higher compensation than those focusing on particular risk types, such as credit and market risk.

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