Which technology jobs pay a consistently high salary? We’re not talking about engineers or developers who luck out by joining a unicorn startup, then making millions of dollars off a blockbuster IPO. Instead, let’s focus on those jobs that tend to pay six figures, irrespective of other types of compensation (such as stock options).
Burning Glass, which collects and analyzes millions of job postings from across the country, gives us an idea of which tech jobs can often pay above this range. Analyzing the past 12 months of postings, we found that various types of engineers, architects, and managers all did well, at least on the surface:
However, these job titles are rather broad. For example, plenty of Java developers and project managers make under $100,000 in annual salary, especially if they’re just starting out. In order to unlock those higher compensation tiers, you need a mix of skills, experience, and education; specializing in up-and-coming technologies such as machine learning, for example, can make an engineer that much more valuable. In a similar fashion, salaries for managers often hinge on your ability to run teams of considerable size, as well as apply creativity to complex and difficult problems.
So let’s look at the tech skills that popped up most often in conjunction with these high-paying positions. It’s interesting to note that some of the highest-paying are “old school” programming languages and technologies such as Java, SQL, and Python:
On a company-by-company level, we see that some of the nation’s largest tech firms, such as Google, Facebook, and Amazon, likewise ask for skills such as Python, Java, and SQL. At many of the biggest, even entry-level software engineers can pull down six-figure salaries (in addition to significant bonuses and stock). Take a look at this crowdsourced salary data from levels.fyi, which tracks compensation in tech:
If you’re interested in tech as a career, and you’re interested in securing high pay, take heart: There are a lot of career pathways that will allow you to do just that. The trick is to master your skills, and build up your experience in any way that you can.