Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE) Salary
Senior Software Development Engineers in the United States can look forward to a sizeable six-figure salary — around $112K per year on average. Overall cash earnings for Senior Software Development Engineers stretch from $81K on the lower end to $160K near the top, and the heftiest packages can encompass around $21K from bonuses and $37K from profit sharing. This group's pay is mainly influenced by geography, followed by the company and years of experience. Job satisfaction for Senior Software Development Engineers is high. A large number enjoy medical while a fair number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a strong majority. The numbers in this rundown were provided by PayScale's salary survey participants.
Job Description for Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE)
Senior software development engineers typically develop and upgrade computer operating systems and application software. As experienced members of software development teams, they often perform a lead role in software development projects. Many senior software development engineers work for information technology (IT) companies, developing computer operating system software for computers and computer networks. Other senior software development engineers work for specific software publishers, creating applications for personal, business, and educational users. Across the field, the senior software development engineer's primary task is developing software that provides its users with consistent, high-quality performance.Read More...
Those hoping to become senior software development engineers need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in computer science, software engineering, or mathematics, as the position demands expertise in those disciplines. Many employers prefer individuals with master’s degrees for senior positions; for higher-level positions in particular, extensive experience in software development typically is required. Senior software development engineers need to have expert-level knowledge of different computer languages, computer logic, and skill in developing and expanding flow charts. Familiarity with software design methods - as well as writing, editing, and debugging computer programs - is a must. Programming language knowledge is also a essential, as is deep technical knowledge of computer operating systems. Employers also may require senior software development engineers have expertise in a specific computer operating system. Given the specificity of their field, they also must have expertise in software development tools and the ability to function within the time-sensitive constraints of the development cycle.
Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE) Tasks
- Write, modify, and debug software for server applications.
- Write code to create multi-threaded, networked server applications.
- Use source debuggers, program dumps, and performance monitoring tools.
- Test and document software for server applications.
- Write, modify, and debug software for client applications.
Common Career Paths for Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE)
At the upper end, Senior Software Development Engineers who move into a Software Engineering role may earn a little more as the latter position has a median salary of $138K per year. Senior Software Development Engineers most frequently advance into Lead Software Development Engineer and Software Development Manager roles even though the median salaries are $13K lower and $2K lower, respectively.
Senior Software Engineer Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE)
Well-known firms with a reputation for hiring numerous Senior Software Development Engineers include Amazon.com Inc, CSG Systems International Inc, Microsoft Corp, Expedia, Inc., and Yahoo! Inc. Microsoft Corp offers the best pay with a median salary of $150K, though salaries there don't seem that varied, bottoming out near $116K and maxing out at just $170K. Soaring salaries can also be found at Amazon.com Inc, Yahoo! Inc., and Expedia, Inc., where earnings of $149K, $144K, or $121K are standard for Senior Software Development Engineers.
Employees at CSG Systems International Inc take home the smallest paychecks, and $92K is the median salary. Furthermore, range in pay is narrow, with salaries starting at $87K and quickly nearing the top at only $111K. Dell, Inc., Thomson Reuters, and Expedia, Inc. also rank near the bottom for pay, handing out $109K, $115K, and $121K-paychecks on average.
Popular Skills for Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE)
Pay by Experience Level for Senior Software Development Engineer (SDE)
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Senior Software Development Engineers — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. The average worker who claims fewer than five years of experience earns around $98K. In contrast, however, individuals who report five to 10 years in this occupation see a much larger median of $109K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $121K. Senior Software Development Engineers who have stuck around for more than two decades see earnings that are only slightly higher than those of folks who have worked for 10 to 20 years; the more senior group makes around $128K on average.
Pay Difference by Location
For Senior Software Development Engineers, Sunnyvale provides a pay rate that is 36 percent greater than the national average. Senior Software Development Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Redmond (+23 percent), Bellevue (+22 percent), New York (+20 percent), and Seattle (+13 percent). One of the biggest compensable factors for Senior Software Development Engineers is geography, with workers in Bloomfield earning a whopping 23 percent below the national average. Below-median salaries also turn up in Miami and San Diego (21 percent lower and 5 percent lower, respectively).