Senior Unix System Administrators enjoy a hefty income, with average pay passing six figures ($99K) annually in the United States. Overall cash earnings of Senior Unix System Administrators stretch from $74K near the bottom to $135K at the top, and the heftiest packages can encompass around $15K each from bonuses and profit sharing. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by years of experience. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Nearly all enjoy medical while most get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a strong majority. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$72,107 - $127,018
(Median)
$72K
$99K
$130K
MEDIAN: $99,207
10%
50%
90%

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$30.28 - $74.15
(Median)
$30
$56
$74
MEDIAN: $56.00
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
$72,107 - $127,018  
   
Bonus
$604 - $14,780  
Profit Sharing
$1,922 - $15,547  
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).
)
$73,851 - $134,880  
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$32$64$96
Hourly Rate
$30.28 - $74.15  
   
Overtime
$43.72 - $93.22  
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$70K$140K$210K
Bonus
$604 - $14,780  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,922 - $15,547  
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).
)
$73,851 - $134,880  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 34
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Job Description for Sr. Unix System Administrator

Senior Unix system administrators oversee Unix operating systems for companies and perform Unix server support for both hardware and software. They also perform periodic maintenance on these systems and carry out troubleshooting when problems arise; when troubleshooting systems, they intend to find the root causes of problems through objective analysis. They also perform upgrades when necessary to fine-tune systems for optimal performance.

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Sr. Unix System Administrator Tasks

  • Set policies for applications and infrastructure including patching schedules, release deployment, testing, and system readiness.
  • Perform capacity planning, infrastructure design, systems administration, and updates according to patch and release specifications.
  • Install, configure, test and maintain new and existing servers, hardware and software components.
  • Troubleshoot and resolve incidents, outages or degradations.

Common Career Paths for Sr. Unix System Administrator


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As Senior Unix System Administrators transition into upper-level roles like Information Technology Architects, it's possible that they won't see a change in salary. Information Technology Architects earn the same amount as Senior Unix System Administrators on average. Senior Unix System Administrators most often move into Senior Systems Engineer or Information Technology Manager roles. However, the former pays $12K less on average, and the latter pays $24K less.

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Popular Skills for Sr. Unix System Administrator


Senior Unix System Administrators seem to require a rather large skill set. Most notably, skills in System Administration, Solaris, IBM AIX, and Linux are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Windows NT / 2000 / XP Networking, Windows Operating System General Use, and HTML. Most people skilled in Linux are similarly competent in Sun Solaris and IBM AIX.

Pay by Experience Level for Sr. Unix System Administrator

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


Experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase in this role. Workers in their first five years can expect to earn $82K, but people who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably bigger sum of $92K. Between 10 and 20 years, pay surpasses six figures; at this stage, the average professional scores around $103K. Veterans who have surpassed the 20-year mark may make only slightly more than those who are navigating the mid-career stage; the more senior group reports median earnings of around $105K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $101,514

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

Baltimore offers some of the highest pay in the country for Senior Unix System Administrators, 23 percent above the national average. Senior Unix System Administrators can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Los Angeles (+19 percent), San Jose (+14 percent), Washington (+13 percent), and Houston (+12 percent). In Philadelphia, salaries are 12 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Employers in Minneapolis and Miami also lean toward paying below-median salaries (7 percent less).

Sr. Unix System Administrator Advice

What do you wish you knew about your job when you first started out?

Sr. Unix System Administrator in Addison:
"Stay Focused."
Stay focused, but maintain a well rounded career. Explore other areas in your work environment.

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Sr. Unix System Administrator Salaries



National Average
$102,000


Entry-Level
up arrow 20%

Skills That Affect Sr. Unix System Administrator Salaries


Solaris
0%

National Average
$102,000

IBM AIX
up arrow 1%

Linux
up arrow 2%

UNIX
up arrow 4%

Shell Scripting
up arrow 4%

Sun Solaris
up arrow 4%

Network Management / Administration
up arrow 4%

VMware ESX
up arrow 4%



SQL
up arrow 6%

HTML
up arrow 9%


Windows NT / 2000 / XP Networking
up arrow 11%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 52 votes.

Gender

Female
6 %
Male
94 %

Years of Experience

1-4 years
2%
5-9 years
14%
10-19 years
45%
20 years or more
39%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 91%
dental benefits
Dental: 85%
medical benefits
Vision: 77%
dental benefits
None: 6%
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