US technology and developer salaries to start your 2016 job search

If you’re looking to start out with a fresh new job in 2016, knowing the right salary ranges for certain developer and technologist positions is crucial. While there are other components that go into deciding whether a role is right for you, salary is without a doubt one of the leading factors in your decision.

According to data collected from the job seeking developers on our platform, the majority view compensation as very important when choosing a new position, more so than when weighing any other trait (such as technology being worked on, work/life balance, or level of responsibility).

A couple of things to think about in regards to salary as you look around, from Max Kantelia, untapt co-Founder and long-time leader in executive search:

It is vital to be sure that salary ‘a hygiene factor’ meets (or exceeds) your salary requirement – before you start to explore the ‘motivating factors’ that are hopefully going to help you to build your career in a particular firm.

Pay is often more important in job choice than in decisions to quit, in part because pay is one of the few hygiene characteristics people can know with certainty before taking a job. In contrast, once a person has been on the job for awhile, other motivational factors (such as quality of management) come into play.

To give you a preliminary understanding of you fall in the “fair and desirable salary” range, we’ve compiled a short-and-sweet list of average salaries for various technology and engineering roles in the US.

salaries-graphic

While you’re fitting yourself into the above ranges, keep in mind these should be treated as guidelines only. Each situation is unique, but there are several general factors that will come into play when you assess where you shake out on this spectrum:

  • Location. If the job you’re looking at is located in or near a particular city or region, your salary ranges may be higher, and in some cases – like NYC or SF – significantly higher. Look at city/regional averages for your job skill set and adjust accordingly.
  • Industry. There are some industries that generally pay more (or less) than others for similar job types. For instance, financial services/FinTech or healthcare generally offer higher salaries for developers than other industries. 
  • Skill set specialization. Within several of our categorizations, there are differences between various tech specializations. For instance, a front end developer who does CSS and layout will get paid differently than a front end developer who also has JavaScript skills (and so on).
  • Company type. Generally speaking, larger, more established companies that have a well-developed technology outlook will offer tech salaries in the upper range. With well-funded technology startups, this may also be the case. Often times, however, startups are very cash-conservative and may skew towards the lower ends of these salary ranges.
  • Equity or incentive mix. Along those lines, you’ll often see equity and other non-salary financial incentives built in to packages to accompany smaller salaries (this is common in startups). You’ll want to weigh this against any forgone salary when looking at a job.
  • Time in position. A junior role could mean you’re right out of university, or you have 3 years of experience. This will make a big difference in where you fall within each bracket.

 

Where did we get our data?

Our salary ranges are an aggregation of both internal data and well-researched external, publicly available data.

Kate is CCO of untapt and Founder of FactorZero. A marketer by trade, she's had varied roles as President of Girls in Tech, Founder of Other Side Group, Executive Director of Digital and Social Media at Syracuse University, and has been in and around startups her entire career. She writes for a bunch of places including Forbes and Entrepreneur, and dabbles (a lot) in women in technology and entrepreneurship stuff, startup stuff, good craft beer, hard cider and hops farming, skiing, hiking and playing music.

Kate is CCO of untapt and Founder of FactorZero. A marketer by trade, she's had varied roles as President of Girls in Tech, Founder of Other Side Group, Executive Director of Digital and Social Media at Syracuse University, and has been in and around startups her entire career. She writes for a bunch of places including Forbes and Entrepreneur, and dabbles (a lot) in women in technology and entrepreneurship stuff, startup stuff, good craft beer, hard cider and hops farming, skiing, hiking and playing music.