After many years of toil, hardworking developers can become senior/lead developers. The road to this position is not easy. Senior/lead developers first earn a bachelor's degree or even a master's degree in computer science or a similar field (although a diploma is not necessary to succeed). They also spend years honing their programming skills on the job.

Senior/lead developers use their impressive technical knowledge of coding, including skills such as HTML and Java, to help develop programs. However, the job also includes a people-facing component. Senior/lead developers lead a whole team of developers and help them hone their skills. They also act as a liaison with important stakeholders that are not on the development team.

The senior/lead developer has a very important job. Not only are they one of the best programmers in the room and make sure that the project gets done right, but they are also a key node of communication for the whole company. It's no wonder that the demand for senior/lead developers is expected to grow by 21% by 2028.

What Does a Senior/Lead Developer Do

There are certain skills that many senior/lead developers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, communication skills and creativity.

Learn more about what a Senior/Lead Developer does

How To Become a Senior/Lead Developer

If you're interested in becoming a senior/lead developer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 67.5% of senior/lead developers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 24.6% of senior/lead developers have master's degrees. Even though most senior/lead developers have a college degree, it's impossible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Senior/Lead Developer

Senior/Lead Developer Career Paths

Average Salary for a Senior/Lead Developer

Senior/Lead Developers in America make an average salary of $127,208 per year or $61 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $177,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $90,000 per year.
Average Senior/Lead Developer Salary
$127,208 Yearly
$61.16 hourly
10 %
90 %

What Am I Worth?


Senior/Lead Developer Education

Senior/Lead Developer Majors

Senior/Lead Developer Degrees


67.5 %


24.6 %


3.5 %

Top Colleges for Senior/Lead Developers

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition

2. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition

3. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition

4. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition

5. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition

6. Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition

7. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition

8. Georgetown University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition

9. Dartmouth College

Hanover, NH • Private

In-State Tuition

10. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition

Top Skills For a Senior/Lead Developer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 8.0% of senior/lead developers listed web services on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and communication skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Senior/Lead Developer Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Senior/Lead Developer templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Senior/Lead Developer resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Senior/Lead Developer Demographics

Senior/Lead Developer Gender Distribution


After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among senior/lead developers, 19.8% of them are women, while 80.2% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among senior/lead developers is White, which makes up 54.2% of all senior/lead developers.

  • The most common foreign language among senior/lead developers is Spanish at 21.2%.

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Best States For a Senior/Lead Developer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a senior/lead developer. The best states for people in this position are Alaska, New York, California, and Delaware. Senior/lead developers make the most in Alaska with an average salary of $167,412. Whereas in New York and California, they would average $150,260 and $147,741, respectively. While senior/lead developers would only make an average of $145,946 in Delaware, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Alaska

Total Senior/Lead Developer Jobs:
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

2. Pennsylvania

Total Senior/Lead Developer Jobs:
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

3. Delaware

Total Senior/Lead Developer Jobs:
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:
Full List Of Best States For Senior/Lead Developers

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Top Senior/Lead Developer Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ senior/lead developers and discovered their number of senior/lead developer opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Accenture was the best, especially with an average salary of $109,527. Cognizant follows up with an average salary of $102,563, and then comes Citigroup with an average of $160,463. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a senior/lead developer. The employers include Astellas Pharma, Broadridge, and UBS

Most Common Employers For Senior/Lead Developer

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
3Wipro Limited$144,651$69.5419
4JPMorgan Chase & Co.$133,946$64.4037
5Hewlett Packard Enterprise$133,884$64.3715
9Bank of America$124,086$59.6639

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