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37 Honest DevOps Manager Salaries

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Published on July 13, 2021

The national average salary for a DevOps manager is upwards of $100,000 per year. DevOps managers reliably get paid so well because they’re doing tricky work requiring an expert hand: getting a company’s developers and network operations teams working together.

A very lovely salary awaits the men and women who are trained and capable of convincing leadership of the right direction, development teams of the right objectives, and operations teams why they should cooperate. Remember, DevOps is no big secret. These careers can be achieved by earning a DevOps Certification.

However, not every DevOps manager will find a job offer with a $100,000 salary. Most probably won’t. That’s because the high-paid DevOps managers skew the national average up. Based on the number of jobs available and filled, most DevOps managers make more than $80,000 per year. That's still pretty good, but there’s always room for improvement.

Maybe you’ve been thinking about moving into a new job as a DevOps manager, or maybe you’ve been working as one, and you’re thinking about looking for a better-paying job. We’ve assembled a snapshot of the current salaries that DevOps managers in 37 states can expect. On top of that, we’ve assembled recommendations for certifications, training, and tools you can learn to improve your odds of earning a high salary.

What is a DevOps Manager?

Usually, a DevOps manager is the liaison between three groups within a company: the development team(s), IT operations team(s), and management. It’s not unusual for those three groups to have competing objectives and even conflicting values. A DevOps manager balances them.

A DevOps manager keeps every step in a product’s lifecycle running smoothly while tackling technical problems for developers and operations all the while supporting the organization’s goals.

DevOps managers are often technical experts in both software development and IT operations. The DevOps managers with the best salaries are a mix of a hands-on technical expert and a hands-off coach. The precise job requirements for a DevOps manager can change drastically from company to company, mostly based on how much of a DevOps mindset and workflow the company has adopted.

Depending on the company, DevOps managers might be placed on a career ladder under DevOps engineers and DevOps architects. DevOps architects tend to be focused on the biggest possible picture: designing a company’s DevOps approach, infrastructure, and technological approaches from scratch.

DevOps engineers tend to design new DevOps solutions within existing architectures and build new ways to optimize interoperability. DevOps managers usually work with individual teams of devs or IT operations teams to resolve fine-tuned, specific issues.

37 Real Salaries for DevOps Managers

If that broad description of what DevOps managers tend to do excites you, or you think it describes what you’re already doing pretty well, you’ll probably want to know how to land one of those triple-digit salaries. We’ve accumulated tons of data about DevOps manager positions nationwide and assembled them here for you.

We’ve arranged the DevOps manager salary information into the 37 cities we drew them from. We've also arranged the salaries into three categories: the average for that market, the high-end average, and the low-end average. The high-end average usually includes the most highly trained and experienced DevOps manager positions, while the low-end average salaries tend to include entry-level spots.

From city to city, even within the same state, the snapshot of what a DevOps manager can expect to get paid changes drastically. Even the national numbers paint a different picture than the 37 DevOps manager salaries chart.

  • The national average salary for a DevOps Manager is $103,700.

  • The average high for a DevOps Manager is $127,000.

  • The average low for a DevOps Manager is $80,730.



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There are few places where the range between the highest-paid and lowest-paid DevOps managers is less than $30,000. In those places, it’s always because of a low high-end. 

There’s usually a difference of about $50,000 between the high-end average and low-end average salaries for DevOps managers. But that number drops to around $22,000 in just a few cities. Those few cities are by far the statistical outliers. However, in each, the high-end average is meager: towns like Salt Lake City ($103,000), Atlanta ($104,000), Dallas ($104,000), and Austin ($108,000).

This trend suggests that the norm for DevOps manager salaries is to offer a lot of room for improvement, no matter where you look. In most markets, even the lowest wage range had at least $50,000 of growth that could be reached through training, certification, and education.

The range of opportunities for low-paid and high-paid DevOps managers nationwide is enormous. The lowest national average salary for a DevOps manager is in Bayamon, Puerto Rico: $59,000. But the following 15 cities on the list all progress to $70,000. And even among low averages, the highest is in San Francisco, where even a low-paid DevOps manager can expect $116,000. The difference is even more significant for high-paid DevOps managers.

This range suggests two things. One, the position of DevOps manager is still unclear in most job markets, and that means that well-trained and experienced DevOps managers can feel confident in how valuable their skills are. Two, there’s almost always a better job market for you to check out. If you think you’re overqualified and underpaid, you might be! Maybe in a job market, a few pay brackets above where you are currently will pay you much more.

The national average salary for a DevOps Manager is above $100,000, but many jobs pay much less than that. Starting as a DevOps manager, you might see “average salary is $100,000” and expect that for your first job. But remember, that’s an average of all salaries being paid — and high-paid DevOps managers skew those numbers upward. If you’re starting in a relatively low-paying market, you should be prepared for a salary closer to $75,000.

The DevOps Manager jobs with the highest salaries are in the nation’s largest and most expensive cities. High-paid DevOps managers are paid the most in New York City, Seattle, D.C., San Francisco, and San Diego. Those are all notoriously expensive cities to live in. So, if you live in a very high-population, expensive city, don’t get too excited about landing a $150,000 salary.

4 Salary Considerations for a DevOps Manager

If you do any work with DevOps, you know that getting it right can be messy and confusing. DevOps managers who want to earn the best salaries must be ready to make that chore less complicated and more profitable. A lot goes into getting that right.

For new DevOps managers who want to land their first gig or existing DevOps managers who wish to justify a better salary, there are four things to consider: experience in development and operations, expertise with DevOps tools, applicable certifications, and choosing the right business industry.

Experience Requirements for DevOps Managers

The exact experience a DevOps manager should have will change according to the company and position. However, the best salaries for DevOps managers are those with expertise in three areas: software development, IT operations, and management.

A DevOps manager is responsible for shepherding development teams toward objectives and deadlines that are sometimes challenging. To do that effectively and convincingly, the best DevOps managers draw on firsthand knowledge of development difficulties and annoyances to efficiently clear the way for teams.

But it’s also important that a DevOps manager knows the technical limitations (and opportunities) that the IT operations teams can face (and provide). The DevOps manager ideally operates between both teams and has to know enough to speak their “language” comfortably in both.

But the reason DevOps managers are rewarded with good salaries lies in their soft skills. Communicating problems and opportunities effectively to both teams while representing the situation accurately to senior management is a daily task for DevOps managers. Experience navigating relationships in a large company will help boost a DevOps manager’s salary, as will experience with supervision and compliance.

4 Categories of Tools that DevOps Managers Need to Know

There are hundreds of DevOps tools. More detailed analyses of all the tools a DevOps team might use turned up 400 products in 17 categories. There’s no way a DevOps manager could learn all of them. It’s unrealistic to expect a DevOps manager to know the names of all 400. But that doesn’t mean you’re off the hook.

The steps of the DevOps lifecycle loop back on themselves in figure eight: Plan, Build, Verify, Test, Release, Deploy, Operate, and Monitor. If you’re serious about qualifying for a great salary as a DevOps manager, you must at least understand those categories. Below, we combine some of those into four categories and describe some of the tools that belong in each.

DevOps Tools for Planning and Coding

The planning stage includes gathering requirements. Because it’s a continuous cycle, those requirements usually come from the operating and monitoring tools (but we’ll cover those later). Tools like Confluence help keep development teams on track and working toward the same objectives. Jira is also a popular option.

When it comes to actually implementing the plans and writing the code, Git is arguably the world champion. Source code management (SCM) helps track all project code changes despite hundreds of contributors.

Salary impact of planning and coding tools in DevOps: Huge. The process of DevOps is a snake eating its tail, and each step is crucial to success. But the planning and coding tools are the head of the snake, where the thinking occurs. Knowing tools like Git, Subversion, Jira, and Targetprocess might be one of the most fundamental influences on a DevOps manager’s salary.

Verifying and Testing Tools Used in DevOps

One of DevOps's demands on the development world is that code must be thoroughly verified and tested before it goes live. A DevOps manager might not be the person who confirms code quality and writes error reports, but they must know the tools the company and teams rely on. Some of the industry’s favorite testing tools include Selenium, Parasoft, and Topaz.

Salary impact of verifying and testing tools for DevOps managers: Significant. DevOps managers who can speak the lingo of software testing frameworks and quickly understand their results are valuable. Earning a good salary as a DevOps manager requires you at least know how to read the outputs of your teams' testing tools.

DevOps Tools for Releasing and Deploying

Software that’s ready to ship is called a release, and one of the more common ways of packaging it up is inside a container. Containerization makes release schedules and fallbacks, rollbacks, and recoveries possible and (hopefully) more accessible.

Docker, Jenkins, and Saltstack are among the most popular containerization tools used by DevOps teams. When it comes to actually deploying, tools like Harness, Octopus Deploy, and AWS CodeDeploy each operate very differently, and a DevOps manager must understand the tools their teams use.

Salary impact of releasing and deploying tools in DevOps: Significant. The category of DevOps tools that fall under releasing and deploying is probably the hardest to define. Tools like CloudBees Flow deal only with release orchestration, and Docker is all about containerization, while Maven enables continuous integration. It’s hard to nail down which tools, much less what sorts of tools, a DevOps manager should learn to justify a good salary. At this point, a lot of research has to be done individually on a case-by-case basis.

Configuring, Operating, and Monitoring Tools for DevOps

This category of DevOps tools is where figure eight loops back to its beginning. It’s when data is collected about performance and when provisioning and configuration happen to keep the product running smoothly. This is another hard-to-encapsulate category of tools. It includes tools like Chef and Puppet that automate configurations, Splunk that visualizes system performance data, and application performance monitoring (APM) tools like Instana that focus on containerized apps.

Salary impact of configuring and monitoring tools: Huge. The other “huge” category of tools in a DevOps manager’s toolkit was planning and coding — and it makes sense that configuring, operating, and monitoring would be the other one. Combined, all these tools are the heart and soul of DevOps: a marriage of what fundamentally makes software development possible and what makes IT operations efficient. A DevOps manager who gets a handle on at least those ends of the DevOps loop can expect substantial salaries.

Top 4 Certifications for DevOps Managers

Like anyone else in the IT industry, a DevOps manager can leapfrog their career by earning the right certifications. Strong correlations exist between industry certifications and increased salaries. The difficulty for a DevOps manager is in choosing the right ones. Unlike network engineers or software developers, a DevOps manager's tools, hardware, and software aren’t always well-defined.

That said, there are some certifications that most DevOps managers should consider to qualify for higher salaries. Chef’s certification program offers badges that validate knowledge in different implementations of Chef. Red Hat certifies expertise with its Ansible automation product. Microsoft’s Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert is great for DevOps managers who work with Azure. The AWS Certified DevOps Engineer — Professional is similarly valuable for AWS teams.

Chef Certification Program (with Badges)

Chef’s badges are intended to show how Chef can be used within a DevOps production lifecycle while validating mastery over individual use cases. A DevOps manager who’s collected badges like the Basic Chef Fluency, Local Cookbook Development, and Extending Chef is on their way to being seen as an expert in automation with Chef.

Salary impact of the Chef certification program: Significant. Earning one Chef badge isn’t the end-all for anyone, at least a DevOps manager. Many badges make stepping stones to certifications, but earning specific badges can help validate a DevOps manager’s familiarity with a specific element of their teams’ processes.

Red Hat Ansible Certification Program

Ansible is a Red Hat product, and its certification program features seven courses on implementing automation software under different circumstances. A few general certifications exist, like the Simplicity in Automation Technical Overview or Ansible for Network Automation. But Microsoft Windows Automation and Certified Engineer for Linux 8 relate to the specific environment in which Ansible is deployed.

Salary impact of the Red Hat Ansible certification program: Significant. Just like the Chef program, if your company doesn’t use Ansible, it’s not precisely worthwhile to earn any Red Hat Ansible certifications. But if you’re a DevOps manager of a team that relies on Ansible for network automation, earning the cert that illustrates — for example — how to manage your entire network infrastructure with Ansible will help justify moving your salary upward.

Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert

This certification depends on a team already relying on Azure. However, for DevOps managers working with administration and development teams that rely on Azure, all Microsoft DevOps certifications can help illustrate the approaches to collaboration, code, source control, compliance, and continuous integration.

Salary impact of Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert: Considerable. As the name suggests, this certification is intended more for DevOps engineers than for DevOps managers, but don’t let that discourage you. Azure offers testing, delivery, monitoring, code, and infrastructure automation opportunities. A DevOps manager who can harness that potential for their teams should earn an excellent salary.

AWS Certified DevOps Engineer – Professional

The AWS Certified DevOps Engineer—Professional covers every use case for a DevOps team within the AWS ecosystem of tools, apps, and services. As if that’s not enough, the certifying exam also tests for quite a lot of knowledge of DevOps principles. However, a DevOps manager with this certification is a tried-and-tested expert for teams that use any of AWS' tools or services.

The salary impact of an AWS Certified DevOps Engineer—Professional is considered significant. AWS offers many tools that a DevOps team can use. This certification probably applies more to DevOps engineers than to DevOps managers because it tests each and every tool that AWS offers. But for companies that rely on Amazon, a DevOps manager with the AWS Certified DevOps Engineer—Professional is a vetted expert and could easily justify a great salary.

What Type of Companies Need DevOps Managers?

DevOps is young, meaning that not every company and industry uses it. For some DevOps managers, that might sound discouraging. For others, that might sound like an opportunity. There’s debate about whether all companies need to adopt DevOps or only organizations that use software to innovate within their sectors.

The software development industry is the most obvious industry for a DevOps manager to look for work in. In addition, financial institutions and national restaurant chains are increasingly interested in paying the salaries necessary to attract great DevOps managers.

Software Development

DevOps is fundamentally meant for software development. It’s hard to imagine that no company in the software game that hasn’t already incorporated DevOps into its business model could be left.

But that should be good news for a DevOps manager: plenty of opportunities to marry your skills and experience with how a company interprets DevOps. You don’t have to convince anyone that it’s a worthwhile investment. They already know. You do, however, have to compete with all the other DevOps professionals in the field already.

Career impact of the software development industry for a DevOps manager: Huge. There’s much more competition in the software development industry for DevOps roles, but that’s also because there’s much more opportunity. The career and salary opportunities are practically limitless for a DevOps manager who gets in at the ground floor and dedicates themselves to building a career in software.

Financial and Insurance Institutions

Global, international, and national banking and insurance corporations increasingly seek DevOps professionals. These massive institutions have long been trying to develop proprietary software for their specific needs. As word spreads that DevOps is the right mindset for creating reliable, efficient software, more companies are investing in DevOps managers who can show their teams the way.

Career impact of finance and insurance institutions for a DevOps manager: Considerable. The difficulty with finding DevOps jobs in finance and insurance is that sometimes, the companies themselves don’t know what they’re looking for. Brand new DevOps managers should be careful not to land a job that expects the impossible accidentally: change everything about development and operations immediately, without any cost or loss of productivity.

National Restaurant Chains

National restaurant chains often have internal software development teams to maintain everything from their highly complicated supply chain logistics software to the apps they hope customers will use to maximize profit. A DevOps manager who can help these national chains ensure deliverability and scalability in every sector will be a highly valued asset, well worth their salary.

Career impact of national restaurant chains for a DevOps manager: Considerable. Sometimes, the positions available for a DevOps professional are unclear, and it is unclear if the industry or company is beginning to adopt DevOps. That can be an excellent opportunity to help lead the way and make a name for yourself. On the other hand, there’s a distinct possibility it’ll end up being a headache and not be worth the frustration the salary brings you.

How to Increase Your Salary as a DevOps Manager

A good DevOps manager is an excellent addition to any company trying to improve a software deliverable. Many options are available for IT professionals who want to land their first gig as a DevOps manager or for DevOps managers who want to improve their salary prospects.

The best bet is to foster and maintain a curious mindset about every piece of technology and software that could improve the continuous improvement and delivery of your company’s product and development pipeline. After that, choosing specific DevOps tools and skills to strengthen and deliberately pursuing training and certification for them is a sure-fire bet to gaining prominence and higher salaries.

Hopefully, the 37 DevOps manager salaries we uncovered will help you compare your own salary and decide if a move or promotion is right for you. And if you plan to try, don’t forget the training and certifications we listed as you make your plans.


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