Average pay for Staff Software Engineers in the United States is more than reasonable, with annual salaries pushing past the six-figure mark ($126K). With some bonuses approaching $26K and certain profit sharing proceeds approaching $35K, overall incomes of Staff Software Engineers spread between $88K and $181K depending on individual performance. Compensation for this group is mainly affected by the particular firm, but the particular city and experience level are influential factors as well. The majority of workers are highly satisfied with their job. Almost all get medical and dental insurance, and a large number get vision plans, too. The vast majority of Staff Software Engineers (86 percent) who took the survey are men. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.

$85,960 - $159,755
$86K
$130K
$160K
MEDIAN: $126,341
10%
50%
90%

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$45.78 - $147.40
$60
MEDIAN: $60.00
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$70K$140K$210K
Salary
$85,960 - $159,755  
   
Bonus
$1,986 - $25,792  
Profit Sharing
$919 - $35,235  
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).
)
$88,243 - $180,814  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 650
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
$60.00  
   
Overtime
$73.75  
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
$1,986 - $25,792  
   
Profit Sharing
$919 - $35,235  
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).
)
$88,243 - $180,814  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 8

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Staff Software Engineer

A staff software engineer is one of the key members of an organization's technical team, working with other employees to develop, maintain, and repair company software for maximum efficiency and usability. This involves identifying problems within computer programs, creating and implementing solutions to deal with them, and keeping company technical architecture running as smoothly and effectively as possible. Staff software engineers usually work under a senior team member who develops the company's technical policies and goals, and follow this supervisor's direction to identify and resolve organizational issues and needs.

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Staff Software Engineer Tasks

  • Test and document software for client applications.
  • Write, modify, and debug software for client applications.
  • 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.

Common Career Paths for Staff Software Engineer


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Staff Software Engineers' salary tends to stay somewhat level for those who assume higher-end positions like Principal Software Engineer. Median pay for Principal Software Engineers is $129K. Staff Software Engineers most often advance into Lead Software Engineer and Software Engineering Manager positions even though the median salaries are $29K lower and $9K lower, respectively.

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Popular Employer Salaries for Staff Software Engineer


International Business Machines (IBM) Corp., Qualcomm Inc, eBay Inc., Juniper Networks, Inc., and Lockheed Martin Corp are leaders in the field that employ a large number of Staff Software Engineers. With a median salary of $186K, Intuit Inc. offers Staff Software Engineers the highest pay. However, earnings don't seem to live on a large spectrum; they generally peter out at $143K and are capped at $220K. Staff Software Engineers can also look forward to large paychecks at eBay Inc. ($152K), Juniper Networks, Inc. ($151K), and Citrix Systems Inc ($147K).

A few other companies with smaller-than-average paychecks include International Business Machines (IBM) Corp. ($98K), Dell, Inc. ($101K), and Lockheed Martin Corp ($118K).

Popular Skills for Staff Software Engineer


Staff Software Engineers seem to wield many skills on the job. Most notably, skills in RESTful Web Services, Software Architecture, Java, and Linux are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 5 percent and 17 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include C#, SQL, and C# Programming Language. It is often found that people who know C are also skilled in Linux.

Pay by Experience Level for Staff Software Engineer

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


Individuals with less than five years' experience take home around $95K. In contrast, though, people who have been on the job for five to 10 years report a six-figure median of $137K. Staff Software Engineers claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $144K. Staff Software Engineers who claim more than two decades of experience actually make somewhat smaller average paychecks of $143K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $135,611

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

Relative to Staff Software Engineers in the rest of the country, Staff Software Engineers in Mountain View, San Francisco, and Sunnyvale see salaries beyond the national average. In fact, these California cities offer more pay than any other American city. The lowest-paying market is Raleigh, which sits 37 percent below the national average, proving that location is a significant contributor to overall pay. Employers in Austin and Orlando also lean toward paying below-median salaries (24 percent lower and 20 percent lower, respectively).

Staff Software Engineer Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Staff Software Engineer?

Staff Software Engineer in Cambridge:
"Working at remote Intuit site."
Pros: Great team, really good manager, fun technology, great pay and benefits, good CEO.
Cons: Politics of a big company, lots of reorgs, layoffs yearly, not alot of respect for teams that are not located at corporate headquarters.

Staff Software Engineer in Sunnyvale:
"Great Technology; Mediocre Management."
Pros: Juniper offers an opportunity to work with cutting edge technology on killer products. Developers are always challenged to think creatively and present their best work.
Cons: Juniper's Directors and VP's have their heads up their asses - couldn't sell a wool blanket to an Eskimo and couldn't predict a snowstorm in a blizzard. Do NOT allow your career to be mentored by one of these buffoons; take whatever technology you can learn and quickly leave the company for the next job offer before HR turns you into the next statistic during RIF season A.) Marketing has no clue - (look what happened to Netscreen and their security products) B.) HR is living in the dark ages - recently implemented a "no vacation" policy; routinely enforces stack-ranking and yearly "lay-offs" to cull the bottom ranks. C.) Managers have no loyalty - will throw you under the bus when projects head south, to keep themselves from looking bad and becoming one of the bottom feeders. It's a very cut-throat, un-friendly, sometimes hostile place to work.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Staff Software Engineer

Gender

Female
14 %
Male
86 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 81 votes.
044
Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
12%
5-9 years
29%
10-19 years
44%
20 years or more
15%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Staff Software Engineer Salaries




National Average
$136,000


Skills That Affect Staff Software Engineer Salaries



up arrow 5%

up arrow 3%




Embedded / Real-Time / RTOS
0%

National Average
$136,000

up arrow 1%


C++
up arrow 5%



SQL
up arrow 12%

C#
up arrow 15%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 81 votes.

Gender

Female
14 %
Male
86 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
12%
5-9 years
29%
10-19 years
44%
20 years or more
15%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 96%
dental benefits
Dental: 92%
vision benefits
Vision: 86%
dental benefits
None: 4%
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