Senior Principal Engineer Salary (United States)

Senior Principal Engineers in the United States can expect to earn a very comfortable salary, with average salaries (in the ballpark of $133,006) surpassing six figures annually. Location is the main element affecting pay for this group—tenure and the particular employer are driving factors as well. The vast majority people have medical and dental plans, and most have vision insurance. Job satisfaction for Senior Principal Engineers is high. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Senior Principal Engineer 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.
)
$95,646 - $160,029
(Median)
96K
110K
130K
140K
160K
MEDIAN: $125,765
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Senior Principal Engineer 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.
)
$48.10 - $80.61
(Median)
48
56
65
74
81
MEDIAN: $64.00
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$60K$120K$180K
Salary
$95,646 - $160,029  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $21,488  
Profit Sharing
$805 - $14,780  
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).
)
$99,238 - $171,111  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 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$50$100$150
Hourly Rate
$48.10 - $80.61  
   
Overtime
$54.80 - $106.23  
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$100K$200K$300K
Bonus
$0.00 - $21,488  
   
Profit Sharing
$805 - $14,780  
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).
)
$99,238 - $171,111  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 35
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Job Description for Senior Principal Engineer

A senior principal engineer oversees engineering projects for their organization or business. They may be employed within the electrical, mechanical, computer, civil, or chemical engineering profession. The role of a senior principal engineer is generally similar through all the industries in which they are employed. Responsibilities may include coordinating hiring, training and scheduling; preparing progress reports that are to presented to upper-level management throughout the project's duration; providing guidance and managing the engineering teams working on that project; ensuring the project is completed on time and on budget. and providing technical and program-level support, including execution strategies.
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Senior Principal Engineer Tasks
  • Plan and implement the design specifications for the engineering project.
  • Responsible for making sure financial restraints are followed and for timely completion of the project.
  • Oversee engineering projects using both technical engineering and administrative skills.

Senior Principal Engineer Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Senior Principal Engineer

Broadcom Corporation pays the most with a median salary of $161,870, though there is little variation overall ($142K-$171K).
The consistently lowest paying firm on the list is Oracle Corp., where the median salary is just $140,000. Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include Raytheon Co. at $151,480, and Broadcom Corporation where $161,870 is the norm.

Popular Skills for Senior Principal Engineer

Senior Principal Engineers report using a pretty varied skill set on the job. Most notably, facility with Engineering Design, Semiconductor and Systems Engineering are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 22 percent and 5 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Manufacturing Process Engineering and Product Development. Most people familiar with Engineering Design also know Systems Engineering.

Pay by Experience Level for Senior Principal Engineer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Senior Principal Engineers, level of experience is overall a somewhat less important part of the salary calculation—more experience does not yield dramatically higher pay—and pay raises are largely incremental. Salary growth can be slow for Senior Principal Engineers who are just starting out. During their first decade on the job, pay typically only increases from $108K to $111K. Those with one to two decades of experience under their belt tend to see salaries around $133K. Though salary increases are not as strong, pay continues to grow slightly for Senior Principal Engineers after two decades on the job, and average earnings come to $140K.

Pay Difference By Location

Santa Clara
up arrow 21%
San Jose
up arrow 16%
Boston
up arrow 12%
San Diego
up arrow 10%
Orlando
up arrow 10%
Los Angeles
up arrow 7%
Seattle
up arrow 7%
El Segundo
up arrow 4%
Washington
up arrow 2%
Irvine
up arrow 1%
Houston
0%
National Average
$133,000
Pittsburgh
up arrow 2%
Minneapolis
up arrow 6%
Austin
up arrow 7%
Huntsville
up arrow 7%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Surpassing the national average by 21 percent, Senior Principal Engineers in Santa Clara receive some of the highest pay in the country. Senior Principal Engineers will also find cushy salaries in San Jose (+16 percent), Boston (+12 percent), Orlando (+10 percent), and San Diego (+10 percent). The lowest-paying market is Austin, which sits 7 percent below the national average. Employers in Huntsville and Minneapolis also lean toward paying below-median salaries (-7 percent and -6 percent, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Senior Principal Engineer Salaries

National Average
$133,000
Entry-Level
up arrow 19%

Skills That Affect Senior Principal Engineer Salaries

Engineering Design, Semiconductor
up arrow 22%
Systems Engineering
up arrow 5%
Research Analysis
up arrow 2%
Engineering Design
up arrow 1%
Project Management
up arrow 1%
Software Development
up arrow 1%
Technical Analysis
0%
National Average
$133,000
Manufacturing Process Engineering
up arrow 7%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 192 votes.

Gender

Female
5%
female alumni
 
Male
95%
male alumni

Years of Experience

1-4 years
1%
5-9 years
9%
10-19 years
40%
20 years or more
49%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 94% dental benefits Dental: 89%
vision benefits Vision: 77% employee benefits None: 5%
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