Men make up the majority of Software Design Engineers in the United States, bringing in about $83K annually. Career length is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Medical benefits are awarded to most, and a strong majority earn dental coverage. The majority of Software Design Engineers claim high levels of job satisfaction. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
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$62,758 - $125,387
(Median)
$63K
$83K
$130K
MEDIAN: $82,511
10%
50%
90%

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$24.13 - $50.42
(Median)
$
$34
$
MEDIAN: $34.00
50%

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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$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$62,758 - $125,387  
   
Bonus
$1,938 - $21,213  
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).
)
$59,168 - $141,010  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 62
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$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$34.00  
   
Overtime
$36.00  
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$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$1,938 - $21,213  
   
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).
)
$59,168 - $141,010  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 8
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Job Description for Software Design Engineer (SDE)

A software design engineer (SDE) is a key member of a software development company. He or she helps identify problems and figures out how to create programs that will automate or ease those situations. Typically, the design engineer will look at existing processes and then work to design or refine software to increase the efficiency or ulity of users. This can involve creating a new product or iterating on existing software products to improve them.

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Software Design Engineer (SDE) Tasks

  • Write code to create single-threaded or user interface event driven applications, either stand-alone and those which access servers or services.
  • Use source debuggers and visual development environments.
  • Test and document software for client applications.
  • Write, modify, and debug software for client applications.

Common Career Paths for Software Design Engineer (SDE)


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Software Design Engineers may experience a large salary bump if they progress into a role such as Senior Software Engineer. The latter position pays an average of $108K annually.

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Popular Skills for Software Design Engineer (SDE)


Survey results suggest that Software Design Engineers use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, facility with C#, Java, and .NET are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 21 percent, 17 percent, and 15 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Embedded / Real-Time / RTOS, C++ Programming Language, and C++. Aptitude in .NET tends to also indicate an understanding of C#.

Pay by Experience Level for Software Design Engineer (SDE)

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


Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $80K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $92K. After one to two decades on the job, professionals can reap plentiful salaries that average out to the six-figure sum of $126K. Respondents who boast more than two decades on the job don't boast commensurate pay, unfortunately; these veterans see average earnings of only $103K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $83,142

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For those looking to make money, Software Design Engineers in Seattle enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 38 percent above the national average. Software Design Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Redmond (+15 percent).

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Experience Affects Software Design Engineer (SDE) Salaries

Experienced
up arrow 52%

Late-Career
up arrow 24%


National Average
$83,000


Skills That Affect Software Design Engineer (SDE) Salaries

C#
up arrow 21%

Java
up arrow 17%

.NET
up arrow 15%

ASP.NET
up arrow 8%

C
up arrow 5%

C# Programming Language
up arrow 3%

National Average
$83,000

SQL
up arrow 2%

C++
up arrow 4%

C++ Programming Language
up arrow 9%

Embedded / Real-Time / RTOS
up arrow 13%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 13 votes.

Gender

Female
9 %
Male
91 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
43%
5-9 years
36%
10-19 years
13%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 85%
dental benefits
Dental: 78%
medical benefits
Vision: 76%
dental benefits
None: 13%
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