Test Software Development Engineers earn around $87K per year on average in the United States, but employers pay the most in Mountain View, offering approximately $121K at the median. This overview is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$55,948 - $116,498
(Median)
$56K
$87K
$120K
MEDIAN: $86,760
10%
50%
90%

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$24.75 - $60.58
(Median)
$25
$42
$61
MEDIAN: $41.00
10%
50%
90%

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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
$55,948 - $116,498  
   
Bonus
$457.50 - $14,532  
Profit Sharing
$1,500 - $19,775  
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).
)
$56,052 - $121,537  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 347
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
$24.75 - $60.58  
   
Overtime
$57.00  
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
$457.50 - $14,532  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,500 - $19,775  
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).
)
$56,052 - $121,537  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 41
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Job Description for Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET)

Software development engineers, test (usually abbreviated as SDETs), are software developers working inside the testing team. He or she has full access to code and carries a variety of responsibilities. One of the key things that sets the SDET apart is his or her access to code; he or she actively participates in debugging and altering code as necessary. In this capacity, at times, the SDET almost assumes something of a hybrid role between the developers and the testers.

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Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) Tasks

  • Find bugs, defects, and regressions.
  • Design, implement, execute and debug information technology test cases and scripts.
  • Validate and document completion of testing and development.
  • Automate test cases.
  • Verify fixes.

Common Career Paths for Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET)


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Test Software Development Engineers do not often transition into Senior Software Engineer roles. The role averages $108K per year. Test Software Development Engineers typically move into roles as Senior Software Test Development Engineers or Lead Test Software Development Engineers, and those positions pay $17K more and $13K more, respectively.

Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET)


Popular Skills for Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET)


Survey respondents exploit a significant toolbox of skills in their work. Most notably, skills in C++, C, C#, and UNIX are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 12 percent and 14 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like .NET, C# Programming Language, and Test Planning. Most people skilled in .NET are similarly competent in Test Automation.

Pay by Experience Level for Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET)

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


The average beginner in this position makes around $79K, but folks who have been around for five to 10 years see a markedly higher median salary of $100K. Test Software Development Engineers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $110K. People who have worked for 20 years or more actually report earning less than people who are in the middle of their careers; the veterans take home a mere $100K by contrast.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $88,979

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

Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) Reviews

What is it like working as a Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET)?

Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) in Seattle:
"I like the challenge."
Pros: I get to write code, test hypotheses, and identify problems. It's a seller's market for SDET skills.
Cons: It's difficult to keep current with constantly-changing technology (but, that is also part of the appeal).

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Experience Affects Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) Salaries



Late-Career
up arrow 12%

National Average
$89,000


Skills That Affect Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) Salaries

C++
up arrow 14%

C
up arrow 14%

C#
up arrow 12%

up arrow 11%

UNIX
up arrow 11%

Microsoft Word
up arrow 6%

up arrow 5%

Java
up arrow 2%

Linux
up arrow 2%

National Average
$89,000

Test Automation
up arrow 1%

Selenium Automated Test Tool
up arrow 2%

SQL
up arrow 4%

Test Planning
up arrow 5%


up arrow 13%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 34 votes.

Gender

Female
23 %
Male
77 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
8%
1-4 years
45%
5-9 years
29%
10-19 years
16%
20 years or more
2%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 89%
dental benefits
Dental: 80%
medical benefits
Vision: 74%
dental benefits
None: 11%
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