Senior Principal Engineer Salary

Salaries for Senior Principal Engineers in the United States are generous, with average pay above six figures ($140K) per year. In the world of Senior Principal Engineers, overall cash allowance can occasionally include more than $30K from bonuses and, in some exceptional cases, $18K from profit sharing, causing incomes to vary widely between $108K and $189K. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the particular firm, followed by geography and tenure. Medical benefits are awarded to nearly all, and most earn dental coverage. The majority of Senior Principal Engineers claim high levels of job satisfaction. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.

$105,624 - $178,344
$110K
$140K
$180K
MEDIAN: $140,987
10%
50%
90%

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$58.65 - $86.98
$70
MEDIAN: $70.00
50%

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$0$193K
Salary $105,624 - $178,344
Bonus $1,518 - $31,619
Profit Sharing $993 - $19,811
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).
)
$109,153 - $193,956
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 20 Sep 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 538
Hourly Data $0$94
Hourly Rate $70.00
Overtime $50.34 - $94.36
Annual Data $0$193K
Bonus $1,518 - $31,619
Profit Sharing $993 - $19,811
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).
)
$109,153 - $193,956
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 20 Sep 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 9

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

Job Description for Senior Principal Engineer

A senior principal engineer oversees engineering projects for their organization or business. They may be employed within the electrical, mechanical, computer, civil, or chemical engineering profession. The role of a senior principal engineer is generally similar through all the industries in which they are employed. Responsibilities may include coordinating hiring, training and scheduling; preparing progress reports that are to presented to upper-level management throughout the project's duration; providing guidance and managing the engineering teams working on that project; ensuring the project is completed on time and on budget. and providing technical and program-level support, including execution strategies.

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Senior Principal Engineer Tasks

  • Plan and implement the design specifications for the engineering project.
  • Responsible for making sure financial restraints are followed and for timely completion of the project.
  • Oversee engineering projects using both technical engineering and administrative skills.

Common Career Paths for Senior Principal Engineer


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As Senior Principal Engineers make advancements to positions like Aerospace Engineer, salaries may go down sharply. Usually, Aerospace Engineers make $77K. Senior Principal Engineers most often advance into Civil Engineer and Electrical Engineer positions even though the median salaries are $88K lower and $79K lower, respectively.

Senior Principal Engineer Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Senior Principal Engineer


Senior Principal Engineers flock to Raytheon Co., Western Digital Corporation, BAE Systems Inc., Raytheon Missile Systems, and Oracle Corp., highly regarded companies that employ a generous number of people in this profession. Those at Broadcom Corporation can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $186K. Other leaders in compensation levels are Oracle Corp. at $165K, Raytheon Co. at $156K, and BAE Systems Inc., where Senior Principal Engineers annually earn $146K.

Western Digital Corporation, Raytheon Missile Systems, and BAE Systems Inc. also scrape the bottom of the pay scale, with median earnings hovering around $135K, $139K, and $146K.

Popular Skills for Senior Principal Engineer


Senior Principal Engineers report using a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in System Architecture, Software Development, Engineering Design, Semiconductor, and Systems Engineering are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 13 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Manufacturing Process Engineering, Research Analysis, and Project Management. It is often found that people who know Engineering Design are also skilled in Systems Engineering.

Pay by Experience Level for Senior Principal Engineer

Pay by Experience for a Senior Principal Engineer has a positive trend. An entry-level Senior Principal Engineer with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $125,000 based on 11 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Senior Principal Engineer with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $116,000 based on 61 salaries. An experienced Senior Principal Engineer which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $146,000 based on 253 salaries. A Senior Principal Engineer with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $151,000 based on 272 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $149,016

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

San Jose offers some of the highest pay in the country for Senior Principal Engineers, 18 percent above the national average. Senior Principal Engineers can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Santa Clara (+16 percent), Denver (+13 percent), Los Angeles (+11 percent), and Boston (+9 percent). The lowest-paying market is Greenville, which sits 29 percent below the national average, proving that location is a significant contributor to overall pay. Not at the bottom but still paying below the median are employers in Fremont and Nashua (17 percent lower and 9 percent lower, respectively).

Senior Principal Engineer Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Senior Principal Engineer?

Senior Principal Engineer in Santa Clara:
"Challenging job; company very tightly controlled."
Pros: Challenging work. Many very sharp colleagues to work with.
Cons: Oracle is stingy about supplying employees the tools they need to do their job. For example, even for *engineers*, it only provides mid-range Windows laptops, whereas in our part of the company we need Unix-based, higher-end computers. Many of us end up spending $2500 out of our own pockets to supply the "tools" we need to do our jobs. The other thing I dislike is that the company operates very "top-down" -- decisions are made on top, pushed down, and must be accepted without question. No reasons are given for the decisions, and no appeals are tolerated. There is no transparency; it feels like upper management is saying "we're the parents and you are the children, *that's* why; we don't need to explain our decisions". I'd expect that in the military, but not in a corporation.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Senior Principal Engineer

Gender

Female
6 %
Male
94 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 62 votes.
Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
1%
5-9 years
7%
10-19 years
38%
20 years or more
54%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Senior Principal Engineer Salaries

▲2%

National Average
$149,000

▼2%

Entry-Level
▼16%

▼22%

Skills That Affect Senior Principal Engineer Salaries







National Average
$149,000


Technical Analysis
▼2%



Manufacturing Process Engineering
▼16%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 62 votes.

Gender

Female
6 %
Male
94 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
1%
5-9 years
7%
10-19 years
38%
20 years or more
54%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 96%
dental benefits
Dental: 90%
vision benefits
Vision: 82%
no benefits
None: 3%
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