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Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE) Salary

Average pay for a Lead Software Development Engineer in the United States is considerable, rounding six figures at $104K per year. In the world of Lead Software Development Engineers, overall cash allowance can occasionally include more than $19K from bonuses and, in some exceptional cases, $25K from profit sharing, causing incomes to vary widely between $73K and $145K. Compensation for this group is mainly affected by the particular firm, but the particular city and years of experience are influential factors as well. Most Lead Software Development Engineers like their work and job satisfaction is high. Almost all enjoy medical while a large number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a fair number. This overview is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
$71,831 - $131,030
(Median)
72K
85K
99K
120K
130K
MEDIAN: $99,110
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%

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$40.12 - $83.01
(Median)
40
50
65
76
83
MEDIAN: $65.00
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
$71,831 - $131,030  
   
Bonus
$484.45 - $18,640  
Profit Sharing
$828 - $24,847  
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).
)
$73,009 - $144,838  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,218
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$29$58$87
Hourly Rate
$40.12 - $83.01  
   
Overtime
$1.30 - $84.40  
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$60K$120K$180K
Bonus
$484.45 - $18,640  
   
Profit Sharing
$828 - $24,847  
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).
)
$73,009 - $144,838  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 51
United States (change)

Job Description for Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE)

A lead software development engineer (SDE) plays a very important role for a large number of businesses and corporations due to the reliance on computers and technology of this modern age. The qualifications required involve a number of high-level technical skills as well as important character traits associated with being an effective leader. An advanced knowledge of computer programming and familiarity with a multitude of the most widely used computer languages is required. The types of companies that hire for a lead SDE vary in services, product, design and use of the software, so adaptability and flexibility as to the functionality required in the software is a highly useful skill to have.

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Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE) Tasks

  • Write, modify, and debug software for web sites.
  • Test and document software for client applications.
  • Use source debuggers and visual development environments.
  • Test and document software for web sites.
  • Work with with designers and content producers.
  • Write code to generate web pages, access databases and business logic servers.
  • Use source debuggers, program dumps, and performance monitoring tools.
  • Write code to create multi-threaded, networked server applications.
  • Write, modify, and debug software for server applications.
  • Write code to create single-threaded or user interface event driven applications, either stand-alone and those which access servers or services.
  • Write, modify, and debug software for client applications.
  • Test and document software for server applications.

Common Career Paths for Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE)


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Lead Software Development Engineers who go on to become Software Engineering Directors may see their salaries climb quite a bit. Median pay for Software Engineering Directors is $135K annually. It is quite typical for Lead Software Development Engineers to transition into roles as Software Development Managers or Senior Software Architects, where reported median earnings are $8K and $17K higher per year.

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Popular Employer Salaries for Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE)


Those at Amazon.com Inc can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $154K.

Popular Skills for Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE)


Survey results imply that Lead Software Development Engineers deploy a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in JavaScript, C++, Linux, and Java/J2EE are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 7 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Internet Information Server, PL/SQL, and ASP.NET. It is often found that people who know .NET are also skilled in ASP.NET and Java.

Pay by Experience Level for Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE)

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For many Lead Software Development Engineers, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. The average beginner in this position makes around $84K, but folks who have been around for five to 10 years see a markedly higher median salary of $98K. After 10 to 20 years, professionals can make it pretty big; the median salary sits in the six-figure neighborhood of $113K. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $117K on average.

Pay Difference by Location


With a pay rate for Lead Software Development Engineers that is 30 percent greater than the national average, Redmond offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Lead Software Development Engineers will also find cushy salaries in San Jose (+29 percent), San Francisco (+27 percent), New York (+16 percent), and Boston (+16 percent). In Minneapolis, salaries are 11 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Employers pay around 6 percent less in Atlanta and 5 percent less in Chicago, below-median salaries for those in this field.

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE) Salaries



National Average
$104,000



Skills That Affect Lead Software Development Engineer (SDE) Salaries


C++
up arrow 6%

Linux
up arrow 4%

Java/J2EE
up arrow 4%

HTML
up arrow 2%

UNIX
up arrow 2%

Java
up arrow 1%

National Average
$104,000

SQL
up arrow 1%

C#
up arrow 2%

.NET
up arrow 2%

Oracle
up arrow 2%

Microsoft SQL Server
up arrow 3%

ASP.NET
up arrow 4%

PL/SQL
up arrow 5%

Internet Information Server (IIS)
up arrow 5%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 302 votes.

Gender

Female
8 %
Male
92 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
8%
5-9 years
34%
10-19 years
46%
20 years or more
12%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 91% dental benefits Dental: 83%
vision benefits Vision: 70% employee benefits None: 7%