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The number of application developers as a percentage of the typical IT staff has dropped slightly in 2018—but the staffing ratio does not tell the whole story. Application developers make up the largest part of most IT staffs, and they are also among the best paid. The way applications are being produced inside the enterprise is changing, and managers need to keep up with these trends to make sure they are staffing the right skills and not wasting money.
As shown in Figure 2 from our full report, Application Development Staffing Ratios, the application developer ratio is down slightly this year, from 14.5% to 13.9% of the IT staff at the median. The current rate nearly matches the percentage in 2016. Prior to 2016, we did not track application development and application maintenance staff as two separate positions.
There are several changes resulting in potential volatility in application development staffing in the coming years, which are further explained in the full report: