Software Designer Salary

An average Software Designer in the United States can expect to take home roughly $77K annually. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Most Software Designers like their work and job satisfaction is high. Among survey respondents, men are more common than women; 86 percent of Software Designers are male. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$49,223 - $117,025
MEDIAN: $77,271

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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.
$49,223 - $117,025  
$484.79 - $12,365  
Profit Sharing
$2,358 - $3,084  
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).
$47,852 - $120,618  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 116
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Job Description for Software Designer

The software designer uses their knowledge of programming and development to design new software, shepherding it through the development process and adjusting the overall focus as needed with the assistance and feedback of developers, programmers, and testers. The software designer's job mainly entails designing software and iterating its methodology, answering questions such as how the program will work, how it will fit alongside other software used by target users, how easy users will find it, and how effective it will be at achieving the vision originally imagined by the designer.


Software Designer Tasks

  • Write, modify, and debug software.
  • Design and develop application components.
  • Test and document software.
  • Analyze requirements and transform them into technical designs.

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Software Designers report using a diverse set of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Java, C++, .NET, and HTML5 are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include C#, JavaScript, and HTML5. C++ is a skill commonly found among those who know C#.

Pay by Experience Level for Software Designer

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

Experience and income seem to be closely related; in general, the survey respondents who had worked for more years reported higher incomes. The average worker who claims fewer than five years of experience earns around $66K. In contrast, however, individuals who report five to 10 years in this occupation see a much larger median of $83K. For Software Designers, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $98K. Software Designers with more than 20 years of experience report incomes that are only modestly higher; the median for these old hands hovers around $101K.

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Experience Affects Software Designer Salaries

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National Average

Skills That Affect Software Designer Salaries

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National Average

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Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 20 votes.


14 %
86 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 87% dental benefits Dental: 72%
vision benefits Vision: 62% employee benefits None: 13%