Engineering Director Salary
Salaries for Engineering Directors in the United States are generous, with average pay above six figures ($146K) per year. Cash earnings for Engineering Directors — which occasionally include more than $41K from bonuses and more than $35K from profit sharing — stretch from around $108K to approximately $216K. Geographic location and years of experience each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Medical benefits are awarded to almost all, and a large number earn dental coverage. For the most part, Engineering Directors enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Engineering Director
Engineering is a discipline with many applications for a vast array of businesses and organizations, from those that rely on heavy machinery to those which innovate in small electronics. The director of engineering is responsible for coordinating the teams of engineers as they take product concepts from the initial design stage through research and development until final quality control and production. The director of engineering is integrally involved in every stage, and some may also work on hiring and training members of their engineering team.Read More...
The director of engineering typically works during regular business hours in an industrial setting, which may involve variable amounts of travel when dealing with off-site manufacturers. A director of engineering should possess strong communication and leadership skills, a deep understanding of computer design and engineering principles, well-developed analytical and problem-solving talents, and the interpersonal skills necessary to manage multiple projects simultaneously. The director of engineering may also be required to meet directly with clients as necessary, when working in as a contractor.
A bachelor's degree in an engineering discipline is the typical minimum educational requirement for the position, with employers often expecting the applicant to have several years of experience both in an engineering capacity and in a supervisory role.
Engineering Director Tasks
- Responsible for all aspects of engineering activities.
- Implement approved engineering budgets and monitor expenses to ensure projects stay within budget.
- Direct and manage multiple projects to guarantee success in meeting project objectives.
Common Career Paths for Engineering Director
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Popular Skills for Engineering Director
Engineering Directors generally report applying a varied skill set to their work. Most notably, skills in Program Management, Product Development, People Management, and Systems Engineering are correlated to pay that is above average. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Software Development. Those proficient in Engineering Design are, more often than not, also skilled in Product Development and Systems Engineering.
Pay by Experience Level for Engineering Director
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Engineering Directors, level of experience appears to be a somewhat less important part of the salary calculation — more experience does not correlate to noticeably higher pay. In this position, someone who has worked for fewer than five years can expect a median salary of $130K. The median for people with five to 10 years of experience is only a little bit higher at $135K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Engineering Directors make a median salary of $156K. Survey participants who have spent more than 20 years on the job report a predictably higher median income of $167K, demonstrating that compensation is roughly commensurate with experience in the end.
Pay Difference by Location
Home to some of the best pay for Engineering Directors, San Jose offers exceptional salaries, 35 percent above the national average. Engineering Directors will also find cushy salaries in San Francisco (+11 percent), Santa Clara (+9 percent), Chicago (+5 percent), and Detroit (+5 percent). Dayton is the lowest-paying area, 15 percent south of the national average. Atlanta and Austin are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 14 percent lower and 13 percent lower, respectively.
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