Software Architect Salary

The market for Software Architects is most competitive in California, where the three top-paying cities can be found: San Jose, San Francisco, and San Diego. Bonuses, profit sharing, and commission all factor into final incomes for Software Architects. Ranging between $83K near the bottom and $165K near the top, total earnings can include up to $22K from bonuses and up to $17K from profit sharing, with a high-performing minority reaping commissions of $60K. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the particular firm, followed by geography and years of experience. For the most part, Software Architects enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. Nearly all report receiving medical coverage from their employers and most collect dental insurance. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$81,034 - $148,378

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$34.77 - $102.01

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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.
)
$0$60K$120K$180K
Salary
$81,034 - $148,378  
   
Bonus
$966 - $21,737  
Profit Sharing
$991 - $16,838  
Commission
$0.00 - $59,598  
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).
)
$83,148 - $165,415  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 2,594
National Hourly Rate 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.
)
$0$50$100$150
Hourly Rate
$34.77 - $102.01  
   
Overtime
$0.79 - $83.78  
National Annualized 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.
)
$0$100K$200K$300K
Bonus
$966 - $21,737  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $59,598  
Profit Sharing
$991 - $16,838  
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).
)
$83,148 - $165,415  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 150
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Job Description for Software Architect

Software architects create customized software solutions such as web services, user interfaces, coding programs, and databases, and they are employed primarily by large corporations and agencies which create software for other companies. These architects must always strive to create efficient and satisfactory software solutions for end-users, and they are often responsible for creating standard coding practices and programs for other software designers within their companies.

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Software Architect Tasks

  • Conceive, experiment with, and present architectural approaches for software applications, including web, client, server, and others.
  • Ensure architectural integrity and consistency across the entire product.
  • Design new software applications.
  • Design new operating system components.
  • Conceive, experiment with, and present architectural approaches for operating system components.

Common Career Paths for Software Architect


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Software Architects' salaries may rise greatly for those who assume a higher-end position such as a Chief Technology Officer. The average Chief Technology Officer brings home $146K per year. A Senior Software Architect role is the most common promotion for Software Architects moving up the ladder, and pay for the position tends to be around the $121K mark. Another typical, albeit less common, transition for Software Architects is an Applications Software Architect position, where earnings are usually $108K.

Software Architect Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Software Architect


Known for taking on a considerable number of Software Architects, Hewlett-Packard Company, Intel Corporation, International Business Machines (IBM) Corp., Oracle Corp., and General Electric (GE) Healthcare are leading firms in the industry. For Software Architects, comfortable salaries can be found at Intel Corporation; in fact, average earnings are around $159K, the highest in the area, though the difference in the company's lowest and highest employee paychecks ($109K versus $201K) is great. Also paying near the top of the field are Oracle Corp. at $138K, International Business Machines (IBM) Corp. at $132K, and Hewlett-Packard Company, where Software Architects annually earn $129K.

General Electric (GE) Healthcare, Siemens and General Motors Corporation are three other employers with a reputation for below-average pay, showing salaries around $111K, $121K, and $123K.

Popular Skills for Software Architect


Software Architects seem to wield many skills on the job. Most notably, skills in C++, C, Java/J2EE, and Linux are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 8 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like ASP.NET, SQL, and HTML. Those familiar with .NET also tend to know Software Architecture.

Pay by Experience Level for Software Architect

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


Software Architects with a rich background of experience are typically rewarded with larger paychecks. Although individuals who have less than five years' experience earn $90K on average, people with five to 10 years benefit from a notably larger average of $106K. On average, Software Architects make $124K following one to two decades on the job. Individuals who report more than two decades of experience seem to make only slightly more than folks in the 10-to-20 year range; the more senior group sees median earnings in the comparatively modest ballpark of $136K.

Pay Difference by Location


There's tons of opportunity for Software Architects in California, which is home to the top three paying cities in the field. San Jose, San Francisco, and San Diego all offer salaries above the national rate. Kansas City is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 18 percent.

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Experience Affects Software Architect Salaries



National Average
$120,000



Skills That Affect Software Architect Salaries

C++
up arrow 8%

C
up arrow 8%

Software Architecture
up arrow 4%

Java/J2EE
up arrow 4%

Linux
up arrow 4%

UNIX
up arrow 3%

Java
up arrow 2%

Oracle
up arrow 2%

National Average
$120,000

JavaScript
up arrow 1%

Microsoft SQL Server
up arrow 2%

C#
up arrow 3%

up arrow 5%

up arrow 5%

SQL
up arrow 7%

up arrow 8%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 461 votes.

Gender

Female
5 %
Male
95 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
5%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
58%
20 years or more
16%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 92% dental benefits Dental: 80%
vision benefits Vision: 68% employee benefits None: 7%
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