What Is the Salary of Software Engineer in Germany?

Software engineering is a needed skill worldwide, including in technologically advanced Germany. The German economy is growing rapidly; more and more tech start-ups are launching every year while old and established businesses get digitized. The country needs qualified engineers so they can keep up with the progress. Before pursuing your engineering career in Germany, you need to know how much you will make over there.

The average software engineer salary in Germany is 56,000 EUR per year or 27 EUR per hour. Beginners earn from 40,000 EUR per year, while very experienced workers get paid salaries up to 100,000 EUR per year.

Software engineers are needed in almost all areas of the German economy, car manufacturers, insurance facilities, banks, and universities – every business needs an IT expert who can code. Sounds promising, but the entry-level software engineer salary is essential when deciding where to move, so what is the salary for a software engineer in Germany?

How much does a software developer earn in Germany?

Well, shortly, not a little. The salary for a software engineer in Germany depends on many factors and, therefore, ranges. The average total compensation is between 42,996 EUR and 72,118 EUR at 40 hours work week.

  • The entry-level software engineer salary is 32,000 EUR to 46,500 EUR
  • With professional experience is between 47,000 EUR and 65,000 EUR
  • A senior software developer earns between 65,000 EUR and 100,000 EUR.

Important factors for your salary in Germany as a software engineer

Your degree: bachelor’s, master’s, certificates?

Not only is your degree important for determining an average total compensation in Germany, but also any further training/education. Technology never stands still; hence, further training is an integral part of the IT specialist’s career. Applicants with a master’s degree earn on average 5,000 EUR more than one with a bachelor’s degree (annually).

Company Size

As a rule, you can say: the bigger a firm is, the better the pay opportunities. Salary expectations: when working in a company of up to 500 employees – 44,028 EUR; between 501 and 1,000 employees – 49,740 EUR; from 1k employees – 58,080 EUR.


According to Gehalt.de, the best-paid regions are Baden-Württemberg (52,140 EUR), Bavaria (50,328 EUR), followed by Berlin (46,332 EUR). When talking about the best city to work in, Frankfurt, software engineers can expect the highest salaries of 64,572 EUR on average, followed by Stuttgart – at 64,296 EUR, and Munich at 63,600 EUR annually.



Another factor that is important for the average software engineer salary is professional experience. Depending on the company’s field, employers can require software developers to get between 2 and 5 years of professional experience. Software engineers with a business background can even make it to the managing director. In general, with every professional experience expect better positions and salaries.

Moreover, don’t miss the article about how to get a job as a software engineer in Germany.


Best salary Software Engineer Germany

Besides a successful degree and working experience, the industry plays an essential role in the average salary amount for a software engineer in Germany. Even in this high demand country, you can ruin your paycheck by choosing the wrong direction: large companies pay extremely well. 

In Germany best-paid industries to work as software developers are:

  • banks and insurances
  • medical technology
  • automotive
  • pharmaceutical
  • educational institutions
  • metal and chemical industries
  • petroleum processing

Which skills must a software engineer possess?

Germany especially pays attention to the hard skills of the person over the soft skills. Traditionally skills that show your expertise have always been more important, for instance, your communication ability. Typical hard skills a software engineer or software developer should have to work in Germany are:

  • programming languages and how to code (HTML, JavaScript, Python, and Ruby)
  • software development
  • system design and architecture
  • databases
  • algorithms and data structures
  • understanding product development
  • consulting of software solutions
  • English skills and, ideally, German

Programming languages

In-depth knowledge of programming languages is essential to work as a software engineer in Germany. Current standards include programming languages such as C, C++, Java, Javascript, .NET, PHP, Ruby on Rails, Python, SQL, HTML, and CSS. Relational data such as MySql or PostgreSQL and solutions like Redis should be learned.

The job situation in Germany

In 2019, Germany was missing 124,000 IT specialists, including software developers. The demand has increased by 50% from the last year. On average, finding a suitable person takes six months; some companies don’t receive an application for their positions! Another problem for employers is that some German developers expect high salaries despite lacking skills or incapability to get tasks done. Some practically don’t possess some important IT specialist skills and knowledge.

Software is becoming more and more part of the core business. This means that the software development process is now in companies across all industries, and it’s becoming more and more critical. Software developers, data scientists, and IT project managers are frequently searched for. So much does a software make, how much does a software guru make?

The numbers of computer science are only slightly increasing with the years, disproportionally with the demand. In 2018, around 27,000 university and vocational school students graduated with IT majors.

Check how much you can earn in Germany (for all professions).

Foreign software engineers in Germany

The German government relies on immigration as a solution for this labor shortage. They understand that it’s not foreign experts who depend on Germany, but Germany depends on them. Since 2012 employment of foreigners has increased in IT and in STEM fields overall. This began thanks to the introduction of a new immigration program – the EU Blue Card. Thousands of people from EU and non-EU countries come to Germany annually via this attractive immigration program.

In March 2020 the German government made some changes in immigration law, making it even easier for non-EU nationals to come to work in Germany. The regulations were made particularly easy for IT specialists: now they can enter the country and search for employment without a degree but with several years of working experience in the IT industry.

Most software developers come from non-EU countries (59%), such as India, Russia, Turkey, Balkans, respectively, and EU countries (41%). The future of Germany pretty much depends on foreign IT experts unless companies find a way to outsource these processes to other countries. 


Below, you can see a video of a software engineer from India who gives excellent advice on how to find a job in Germany.


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Opportunities for software engineers in Germany

In general, software engineers and IT specialists have enormous career opportunities in Germany and so all over the world! 1 out of 10 positions in Germany is for software engineers.

Consequently, this fact provides European Union and non-EU software engineers and other IT experts great chances to receive a well-paid career in Germany and to cover the living costs without many difficulties.


Great chances for immigration to Germany

Applicants who receive a position will be granted a 4 years residence permit – EU Blue Card, which can be exchanged for a permanent residence permit afterward. The permanent residence permit doesn’t have a length and will be granted for an unlimited time.

To receive an EU Blue Card candidate must prove a minimum required pay, which is much lower for IT experts – 43,900 EUR instead of the standard salary of 56,400 EUR.

Read more about EU Blue Card and minimum salary.


Career opportunities

The same programming languages are used worldwide. Therefore, IT experts don’t necessarily need to learn German to work here. It can be seen as a significant advantage for foreign workers since German employers often want overseas employees to speak the language at least on some level.

In fact, as a software engineer, you often will find yourself working with other nationalities, and not only with Germans, which will enhance your experience with different cultures even more. For this reason, knowing German isn’t something you need, even when communicating with colleagues.

Furthermore, 86,000 IT specialists are self-employed in Germany; according to German law, you can freelance and work full-time. It can further expand your income and expertise by taking on some projects outside of your day or job description.

Also read the article: 12 Most Common Jobs in Germany 2021.


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