I have worked in the IT sector for the last 10 years and it is the best job. I would say that a PhD is necessary for pretty much anything in science and engineering, although possibly a masters with excellent work experience may get you into engineering.
when I started at the IT the position on the salary scale was largely dictated by the salary that you were earning in your previous job, not sure what it is now.
It is likely that anyone who gets a job in the IT's now will be employed at the AL grade (salary scales also on www.tui.ie
) and has 18 contact hours with students a week, if employed at the Lecturer grade (v.difficult now) you have 16 contact hours a week. But it is tough in the first year or so if you have to prepare that many lectures, much more than a 40 hour week! in my first years there were many 11 and 12pm working days, but once you get into the swing of things it gets a lot easier.
one thing that hasnt been mentioned is the autonomy, in most cases your 'boss' isnt looking over your shoulder, as long as you are doing the hours and the students are happy, then the heads of departments dont tend to look over your shoulder much.
but basically most of us are in the job for the holidays, about 16-17 weeks a year.
go for it if you can