These Are The 10 States With The Highest Staff Engineer Salaries For 2017

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Rankings, Salaries - 8 months ago
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Without fail, in surveys across basically every demographic, the number one most important aspect of a job for most people is the salary — how much do staff engineers get paid where I live?

And while there are many things to go into how much you, specifically, can expect to make, there’s really good data for average salaries for staff engineers by state across America broken down by seniority level. So while your city may be slightly different than the state average, these averages give you a rough sense of what to expect for your salary.

To better understand how salaries change across America, we decided to take a look the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on average pay for staff engineers by state.

Additionally, we wanted to adjust the salary based on the cost of living in a state — because your salary goes further in North Carolina than it does in California.

The state with the best salary for staff engineers after this adjustment? That would be Engineers, All Other.

Here’s a quick snapshot of the top ten states for salaries:

  1. Alabama
  2. Texas
  3. Virginia
  4. Idaho
  5. Mississippi
  6. New Mexico
  7. Colorado
  8. West Virginia
  9. Michigan
  10. South Carolina

Let’s take a look at how we got here and a full ranking of all the states.

If you’re interested, you can read more about the job scene here:

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How we determined pay by state

As we mentioned earlier, we took the average annual salary data for staff engineers from the 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics — specifically their ‘Occupational Employment Statistics.’

To make the comparison of salaries apples to apples across states, we also took into account the cost of living in each state.

We then created an index by dividing the average wage for a state by the cost of living relative to average. As an example, the cost of living index in California is 135.9 and the average pay is $107280, so our index value would be:

$107,280 * (100 / 135.9) = $78,940

We then ranked every state on this criteria with the state with the highest salary index ranking as highest average salary for staff engineers.

Here’s a look at the full ranking for all states.

Detailed List Of Staff Engineer Salaries By State

Rank State Adjusted Salary Average Wage Cost Of Living
1 Alabama $126,271 $115,160 91.2
2 Texas $124,928 $113,310 90.7
3 Virginia $112,212 $113,110 100.8
4 Idaho $111,292 $102,500 92.1
5 Mississippi $108,451 $93,160 85.9
6 New Mexico $106,974 $103,230 96.5
7 Colorado $103,227 $107,150 103.8
8 West Virginia $102,633 $95,860 93.4
9 Michigan $102,078 $90,850 89.0
10 South Carolina $100,282 $99,480 99.2
11 Nevada $100,203 $103,510 103.3
12 Minnesota $99,930 $100,730 100.8
13 Georgia $99,529 $90,970 91.4
14 North Carolina $98,966 $92,930 93.9
15 Oklahoma $98,856 $88,180 89.2
16 Wyoming $96,122 $88,240 91.8
17 Florida $95,707 $94,080 98.3
18 Utah $95,602 $88,910 93.0
19 Ohio $95,255 $89,350 93.8
20 Tennessee $94,116 $84,140 89.4
21 Maryland $93,490 $117,330 125.5
22 Pennsylvania $93,402 $94,710 101.4
23 Kentucky $93,292 $84,430 90.5
24 Illinois $92,811 $87,800 94.6
25 Missouri $91,272 $82,510 90.4
26 Louisiana $91,181 $86,440 94.8
27 Washington $90,655 $95,370 105.2
28 New Jersey $88,080 $107,370 121.9
29 Arizona $87,887 $86,130 98.0
30 Kansas $87,786 $78,920 89.9
31 Wisconsin $86,539 $83,770 96.8
32 Maine $85,839 $95,110 110.8
33 Nebraska $85,545 $78,360 91.6
34 Alaska $85,003 $111,440 131.1
35 Massachusetts $84,842 $113,180 133.4
36 Oregon $84,230 $97,370 115.6
37 Indiana $81,474 $72,920 89.5
38 Iowa $80,989 $73,700 91.0
39 North Dakota $80,985 $80,500 99.4
40 Connecticut $80,751 $103,120 127.7
41 California $78,940 $107,280 135.9
42 Montana $78,898 $79,530 100.8
43 Rhode Island $77,953 $94,090 120.7
44 Arkansas $77,003 $67,070 87.1
45 New Hampshire $76,880 $89,950 117.0
46 New York $76,068 $99,650 131.0
47 Vermont $69,058 $83,630 121.1
48 Hawaii $54,431 $91,390 167.9