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Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software Salary (United States)

A sizeable majority of Computer Software Systems Engineers in the United States are men. In this role, average pay is around $76K per year. In the world of Computer Software Systems Engineers, total cash compensation can vary between $50K and $119K. Each package generally includes bonuses and profit sharing proceeds, and in exceptional cases, those amounts can reach heights of $10K and $6K, respectively. Residence and experience level each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most Computer Software Systems Engineers like their work and job satisfaction is high. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and most collect dental insurance. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$51,910 - $113,500
(Median)
52K
64K
76K
95K
110K
MEDIAN: $75,840
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$13.02 - $62.20
(Median)
13
19
30
48
62
MEDIAN: $30
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$51,910 - $113,500  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,277  
Profit Sharing
$295.17 - $6,343  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$50,442 - $119,469  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 720
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$13.02 - $62.20  
   
Overtime
$22.50 - $67.00  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,277  
   
Profit Sharing
$295.17 - $6,343  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$50,442 - $119,469  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 59
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Job Description for Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software

Computer operating systems, compilers, distribution and billing platforms, and multi-unit inventory management programs are all considered “systems software." This software forms a framework for businesses and organizations on which other activities can be performed. Computer software engineers in systems software are specialized software engineers that help develop new systems and platforms, as well as maintain and update existing platforms to meet the needs of the marketplace and/or employer.
Read More...
Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software Tasks
  • Test and document software for operating systems.
  • Design, write, test, and debug database stored procedures and complex queries to extract, calculate or manipulate information.
  • Work with middle-tier developers to integrate back-end database code with business applications.
  • Use kernel debuggers, system dumps, and assembly language, as well as higher level languages.
  • Design, implement, and test database schemas.

Common Career Paths for Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software

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Computer Software Systems Engineers who transition into an upper level Senior Systems Engineer role may receive a large increase in pay as the position pays an average $99K per year. Given that the typical pay is $68K, it may be surprising to find that a Computer Software Application Engineer is the most common role for Computer Software Systems Engineers to subsequently assume on their way up the ladder. Transitioning into a Software Development Project Manager role — which pays $86K — is also typical for Computer Software Systems Engineers, though less common by comparison.

Systems Developer Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software

Survey results imply that Computer Software Systems Engineers deploy a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Oracle, C, UNIX, and Windows NT / 2000 / XP Networking are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 8 percent and 9 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Visual Basic, C#, and Java. Those educated in C tend to be well versed in Linux. Skill sets containing C++ also tend to include Java and Linux.

Pay by Experience Level for Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience is an important factor influencing the compensation of Computer Software Systems Engineers. Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $68K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $84K. For Computer Software Systems Engineers, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $98K. Veterans who have surpassed the 20-year mark may make only slightly more than those who are navigating the mid-career stage; the more senior group reports median earnings of around $110K.

Pay Difference By Location

San Jose
up arrow 43%
Santa Clara
up arrow 39%
Seattle
up arrow 26%
Portland
up arrow 13%
Denver
up arrow 9%
San Diego
up arrow 6%
Boston
up arrow 3%
National Average
$77,000
Houston
up arrow 2%
Dallas
up arrow 3%
Washington
up arrow 3%
Baltimore
up arrow 9%
Huntsville
up arrow 9%
Chicago
up arrow 9%
Orlando
up arrow 16%
New York
up arrow 20%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
San Jose offers some of the highest pay in the country for Computer Software Systems Engineers, 43 percent above the national average. Computer Software Systems Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Santa Clara (+39 percent), Seattle (+26 percent), Portland (+13 percent), and Denver (+9 percent). In New York, salaries are 20 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Orlando and Chicago are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 16 percent lower and 9 percent lower, respectively.

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Experience Affects Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software Salaries

National Average
$77,000

Skills That Affect Computer Software Engineer, Systems Software Salaries

Oracle
up arrow 9%
C
up arrow 8%
up arrow 8%
Windows NT / 2000 / XP Networking
up arrow 2%
JavaScript
up arrow 2%
Linux
up arrow 1%
SQL
0%
Microsoft Access
0%
National Average
$77,000
C++
up arrow 1%
Microsoft SQL Server
up arrow 2%
.NET
up arrow 2%
up arrow 5%
C#
up arrow 5%
HTML
up arrow 5%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 154 votes.

Gender

Female
9%
female alumni
 
Male
91%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
11%
1-4 years
36%
5-9 years
25%
10-19 years
21%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 89% dental benefits Dental: 83%
vision benefits Vision: 69% employee benefits None: 9%