A Principal Software Architect earns an average salary of $134,086 per year. Most people in this job have more than five years' experience in related jobs.

$102,195 - $168,415
MEDIAN: $134,086

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
$102,195 - $168,415  
$6,183 - $24,793  
Profit Sharing
$1,192 - $19,727  
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).
$106,780 - $180,354  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 172
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Job Description for Principal Software Architect

If computers are the big brains that make the modern world think, then software is the thought process of these big brains, and software comes in as many forms and applications as one can imagine. Virtually every industry relies on computer software, from toys to food and medicine and the armed forces. Software architects are those who create the software needed for all these computer systems to function, and the principal software architect is the person in charge of entire software development teams.


Principal Software Architect Tasks

  • Identify product requirements and limitations to ensure system function.
  • Confer with users, sponsors and stakeholders to identify their vision and needs; design a software or group of software that meet client’s needs.
  • Drive technology innovation and research; lead technology strategy through market analyses, and share emerging technology trends with team.
  • Provide practical solutions to problems that arise during the engineering and architectural processes.

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Popular Skills for Principal Software Architect

Pay by Experience Level for Principal Software Architect

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

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Principal Software Architect Salaries


National Average

up arrow 6%

Skills That Affect Principal Software Architect Salaries

up arrow 5%

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up arrow 5%

up arrow 4%

Apache Hadoop
up arrow 4%

Software Architecture
up arrow 2%

Software Development
up arrow 1%

National Average

C# Programming Language
up arrow 2%

up arrow 4%

up arrow 6%

Microsoft SQL Server
up arrow 15%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 12 votes.


3 %
97 %

Years of Experience

1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 92%
dental benefits
Dental: 86%
medical benefits
Vision: 78%
dental benefits
None: 7%