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Silicon Valley has long been the global tech industry’s epicenter. Developers worldwide aspire to work for companies like Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google, while others try their luck at innovative startups. So how much does an Engineer make there?

The average Silicon Valley engineer salary ranges from about $92,000 to $248,000, with an median annual pay of approximately $151,000

Many tech companies, as practice shows, try to reduce development costs by hiring experienced engineers from other countries. And it’s logical for them to do so, given that tech startups and SMEs in Eastern Europe or Southeast Asia can hire several top IT professionals for the price of a Silicon Valley software engineer salary.

This article will examine whether the effort is worthwhile and where to find top talents for a reasonable salary outside of Silicon Valley.

How much does an Engineer make in Silicon Valley?

Silicon Valley software engineers salary between $88,000 and $152,000. (according to Glassdoor).

The average software engineer’s salary in Silicon Valley by experience

Engineers’ years of experienceThe average salary of engineers
Less than 1 year$107,000 to $161,000
1-3 years$116,000 to $176,000
4-6 years $127,000 to $193,000
7-9 years$133,000 to $201,000
More than 10 yearsMore than $200,000

As of 2024, the average salary for software engineers in Silicon Valley varies significantly based on years of experience. Entry-level engineers, with less than one year of experience, typically earn between $107,000 and $161,000. With 1-3 years of experience, the range increases to $116,000 to $176,000.

Read More:   Update Forget the File System: The Future of Scalable Cloud Storage Will Be Objects

Mid-level engineers, possessing 4-6 years of experience, can expect salaries between $127,000 and $193,000. For those with 7-9 years of experience, the salary further escalates to a range of $133,000 to $201,000. Professionals with more than 10 years of experience often exceed the $200,000 mark.

These figures provide an overview of how experience impacts the earning potential of software engineers in Silicon Valley. Please keep in mind that the salary ranges can vary based on factors like specific skills, the company, and other individual qualifications.

How much does an engineer make a year in Silicon Valley by City?

Cities with Highest Average Engineer Salary in Silicon Valley (As of 2023)

Silicon Valley Salary Comparison by City

City in Silicon ValleyAverage Engineer SalaryJunior Engineer SalarySenior Engineer Salary
Menlo Park$180,000$158,000$207,000
Mountain View$171,000$149,000$195,000
Palo Alto$167,000$146,000$191,000
Redwood City$162,000$142,000$185,000
Santa Clara$152,000$133,000$174,000
San Jose$153,000$134,000$175,000
Solana Beach$122,797$85,948$152,533

While the highest salaries are found in cities like Menlo Park, Cupertino, Sunnyvale, and Palo Alto, lower average salaries are seen in areas like Alameda and Solana Beach

What companies in Silicon Valley pay the highest engineer salary?

Silicon Valley is home to Microsoft, Google, Apple, Uber, Facebook, Netflix, eBay, Cisco Systems, PayPal, Yahoo, LinkedIn, SalesForce, and many other well-known technology companies.

These tech behemoths fuel competition by snatching up local tech talent and paying them well. In doing so, they significantly increase the overall cost of doing business.

Average Engineer Salary in Silicon Valley by Company (Indeed)

42% Above national average

  • Senior Product Manager: $144,157
  • Software Engineer: $145,849
  • Senior Software Engineer: $172,458

32% Above national average

  • Senior Software Engineer: $163,107
  • Software Engineer: $130,659
  • Software Developer: $134,458

72% Above national average

  • Software Engineering Manager: $204,155
  • Software Engineer: $176,268
  • Senior Software Engineer: $183,707

54% Above national average

  • Software Engineering Manager: $188,072
  • Software Engineer: $157,995
  • Senior Software Engineer: $178,905

56% Above national average

  • Software Engineering Manager: $246,221
  • Software Engineer: $159,920
  • Engineering Lead: $207,782

186% Above national average

  • Senior Software Engineer: $357,213
  • Front End Developer: $336,354
  • Full Stack Developer: $155,259

Meets national average

  • Senior Product Manager: $164,722
  • Senior Software Engineer: $125,782
  • Software Engineering Manager: $170,240

77% Above national average

  • Software Engineer: $181,569
  • Senior Product Manager: $200,218
  • Front End Developer: $139,476

77% Above national average

  • Software Engineering Manager: $184,448
  • Software Engineer: $126,1732
  • Senior Product Manager: $100,083

That is why those looking to hire engineers in Silicon Valley should be prepared to go above and beyond to compete by offering competitive salaries as well as compelling non-financial incentives and bonuses.

How much does an Engineer make in Silicon Valley Startups?

According to PayScale, the average salary for a Software Engineer at a startup in Silicon Valley in 2024 is $102,439. The salary range for this position typically falls between $81,000 and $117,000

Unsurprisingly, many startups poised to become unicorns in Silicon Valley are involved in the fintech sector.

For example, Abra, a “crypto bank” founded by a former Goldman Sachs executive, is currently valued at $86 million. The annual average salary of engineers at Abra is estimated to be $124,789 per year or $59 per hour.

Extra Costs of Hiring Engineers in Silicon Valley 

While hiring a programmer in Silicon Valley is expensive, keep in mind that their base salary is only the beginning.

Entry-level positions can earn an extra $9,477-$28,365 per year.

Total compensation is made up of five parts:

  • The base Silicon Valley programmer salary is paid monthly and is quoted each year.
  • Taxes
  • Non-monetary benefits such as healthcare insurance, car rental, commuter assistance, and educational lessons (if necessary).
  • Cash bonuses increase with each new level of experience and generate 50 percent to 200 percent of the base salary in additional revenue.
  • Stock units and stock options can be redeemed over time.

Maybe you want to read: How much do software engineers make by country?

Look outside Silicon Valley: Where to hire top talent at a reasonable price?

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses have turned to outsourcing to meet their staffing requirements.

Working with remote teams has benefited many tech startups and SMEs.

Many Silicon Valley-based companies have expanded their teams by hiring developers from emerging Asian outsourcing destinations such as Vietnam.

Read more: How many Software Developers are in the World?


Why choose Vietnam?

senior software engineer salary vietnam

Senior software engineer salary Vietnam

The Vietnamese IT outsourcing market is still in its early stages, but it is rapidly expanding: Vietnam has already surpassed Japan as the country’s second-largest IT outsourcing partner. By 2020, TopDev, a famous IT recruitment platform in Vietnam, expects to have 300,000 developer profiles registered.

Vietnam ranks fifth in the GSLI due to its meager labor rates, which compete with India’s, and favorable IT tax regulations. English skills vary, but if you’re willing to put in the effort, you’ll find a vendor whose communication level corresponds to your requirements.

The average developer salaries in Vietnam are approximately 85% lower than those in the United States, resulting in significant savings on your part.


How much money do engineers make?

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I am Tam, Founder & CEO of InApps Technology, ranked 1st in Vietnam and 5th in Southeast Asia in Application Development and Custom Software Development. We build a team with a people-centered culture that serves our customers with the WOW experience. I have helped hundreds of startups and brands to succeed with our robust technology solution. Besides, I have 5,000+ connections with C-Levels on LinkedIn and 10,000+ other professionals in communities. I hope to bring BIG VALUES to our right partners and customers. What I can help: – World-class software development service. – Building a dedicated talent team for only 30% of your local vendors’ cost. – Consulting tech startup solutions comprehensively and systematically. – Growth-hacking marketing solution. If you read here, don’t hesitate to contact me for further advice.

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