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Senior Systems Administrator Salary

Senior Systems Administrators in the United States tend to be well-versed in their field, and more than two-thirds have more than 10 years of experience. Average salary is expected to be around $78K per year, but may range from $57K to $108K per year. Incomes of Senior Systems Administrators vary widely depending on performance components; bonuses and profit sharing that can occasionally exceed $10K cause paychecks to spread between $57K on the low end and $108K on the high end. Location is the main element affecting pay for this group — the company and tenure are driving factors as well. Most Senior Systems Administrators 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. The numbers in this rundown were provided by PayScale's salary survey participants.
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$57,400 - $103,279
(Median)
57K
66K
78K
91K
100K
MEDIAN: $78,394
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%

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$21.27 - $53.22
(Median)
21
26
35
43
53
MEDIAN: $34.00
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%

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Show Annual Salary Show Hourly Rate

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
$57,400 - $103,279  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,292  
Profit Sharing
$502 - $10,077  
Commission
$390.37 - $3,052  
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).
)
$57,123 - $108,056  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 3,022
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$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$21.27 - $53.22  
   
Overtime
$23.75 - $67.72  
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$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,292  
   
Commission
$390.37 - $3,052  
Profit Sharing
$502 - $10,077  
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).
)
$57,123 - $108,056  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 257
United States (change)

Job Description for Senior Systems Administrator

Senior system administrators manage a team of system administrators as well as other employees of the IT department. They are responsible for designing, planning, putting into place, and having the highest level of performance as an expert in the system administration for computers and their complex operating systems. With this, senior system administrators research and select upgrades, software and other necessities for their company's computer systems. They also work with other administrators and the IT department to resolve or implement new hardware for computers, printers and other service systems for the company. Senior administrators are also responsible for training and supervising new employees that would work under them. They must be well versed in technology and have a strong ability to plan, organize, evaluate and redesign system designs to have them work better for the company. In addition, senior systems administrators must have strong communication skills (both verbal and written), be a team player and perform difficult tasks well under pressure.

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Senior Systems Administrator Tasks

  • Lead a team of systems administrators to manage servers and other computer system aspects of a company.
  • Configure and troubleshoot software and hardware enhancements, application deployments and infrastructure up-grades.
  • Diagnose and correct computer systems issues.

Common Career Paths for Senior Systems Administrator


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Senior Systems Administrators may experience if they take an upper-level role like Information Technology Architect. The position pays an average $108K annually. Going from Senior Systems Administrator to Information Technology Manager is the transition that occurs most often in this field, and the average paycheck for Information Technology Managers is $76K. Many others choose to work as Senior Unix System Administrators, where pay is typically $90K.

Senior Systems Administrator Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Senior Systems Administrator


Although salaries only range from $80K to just $105K, Dell, Inc. still offers the highest pay with a median paycheck of $94K.

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) offers the least money; the median income there is just $71K. The pay range is also pretty narrow, as compensation generally sits between $56K and $127K.

Popular Skills for Senior Systems Administrator


Senior Systems Administrators report using a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Linux, VMware ESX, Active Directory, and Windows 2003 Server are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Network Management / Administration, Windows Operating System General Use, and Microsoft Exchange. Most people skilled in Microsoft Active Directory are similarly competent in VMware ESX.

Pay by Experience Level for Senior Systems Administrator

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


For many Senior Systems Administrators, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $71K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $76K. Senior Systems Administrators claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $82K. More than 20 years of experience mean a somewhat bigger median paycheck of $86K, but it's not much more than what less experienced people make.

Pay Difference by Location


With a pay rate for Senior Systems Administrators that is 26 percent greater than the national average, San Francisco offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Senior Systems Administrators will also find cushy salaries in Los Angeles (+18 percent), New York (+17 percent), Dallas (+13 percent), and San Diego (+11 percent). In San Antonio, salaries are 11 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market.

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Senior Systems Administrator Salaries



National Average
$80,000



Skills That Affect Senior Systems Administrator Salaries

up arrow 9%

VMware ESX
up arrow 1%

Active Directory
up arrow 1%

System Administration
0%

Microsoft Active Directory
0%

Windows 2003 Server
0%

Storage Area Networking (SAN)
0%

Virtual Machine (VM)
0%

National Average
$80,000

Virtualization
up arrow 1%

Cisco Networking
up arrow 3%

Internet Information Server (IIS)
up arrow 3%

Microsoft SQL Server
up arrow 4%




Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 712 votes.

Gender

Female
7 %
Male
93 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
5%
5-9 years
25%
10-19 years
59%
20 years or more
11%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 91% dental benefits Dental: 84%
vision benefits Vision: 70% employee benefits None: 7%