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Become A Senior Staff Engineer

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Working As A Senior Staff Engineer

  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Getting Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Deal with People

  • $115,146

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Staff Engineer Do

A Senior Staff Engineer manages the work of a team of engineers, chemists, software developers, or molecular biologists. Another responsibility includes both leading and participating in projects regarding their fields of work.

How To Become A Senior Staff Engineer

Industrial engineers must have a bachelor’s degree. Employers also value experience, so cooperative education engineering programs at universities are also valuable.


Industrial engineers need a bachelor’s degree, typically in industrial engineering. However, many industrial engineers have degrees in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, manufacturing engineering, industrial engineering technology, or general engineering. Students interested in studying industrial engineering should take high school courses in mathematics, such as algebra, trigonometry, and calculus; computer science; and sciences such as chemistry and physics.

Bachelor’s degree programs include lectures in classrooms and practice in laboratories. Courses include statistics, production systems planning, and manufacturing systems design, among others. Many colleges and universities offer cooperative education programs in which students gain practical experience while completing their education.

A few colleges and universities offer 5-year degree programs in industrial engineering that lead to a bachelor’s and master’s degree upon completion, and several more offer similar programs in mechanical engineering. A graduate degree allows an engineer to work as a professor at a college or university or to engage in research and development. Some 5-year or even 6-year cooperative education plans combine classroom study with practical work, permitting students to gain experience and to finance part of their education.

Programs in industrial engineering are accredited by ABET.

Important Qualities

Creativity. Industrial engineers use creativity and ingenuity to design new production processes in many kinds of settings in order to reduce the use of material resources, time, or labor while accomplishing the same goal.

Critical-thinking skills. Industrial engineers create new systems to solve problems related to waste and inefficiency. Solving these problems requires logic and reasoning to identify strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to the problems.

Listening skills. These engineers often operate in teams, but they also must solicit feedback from customers, vendors, and production staff. They must listen to customers and clients in order to fully grasp ideas and problems the first time.

Math skills. Industrial engineers use the principles of calculus, trigonometry, and other advanced topics in mathematics for analysis, design, and troubleshooting in their work.

Problem-solving skills. In designing facilities for manufacturing and processes for providing services, these engineers deal with several issues at once, from workers’ safety to quality assurance.

Speaking skills. Industrial engineers sometimes have to explain their instructions to production staff or technicians before they can make written instructions available. Being able to explain concepts clearly and quickly is crucial to preventing costly mistakes and loss of time.

Writing skills. Industrial engineers must prepare documentation for other engineers or scientists, or for future reference. The documentation must be coherent and explain their thinking clearly so that the others can understand the information.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Licensure is not required for entry-level positions as an industrial engineer. A Professional Engineering (PE) license, which allows for higher levels of leadership and independence, can be acquired later in one’s career. Licensed engineers are called professional engineers (PEs). A PE can oversee the work of other engineers, sign off on projects, and provide services directly to the public. State licensure generally requires

  • A degree from an ABET-accredited engineering program
  • A passing score on the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam
  • Relevant work experience, typically at least 4 years
  • A passing score on the Professional Engineering (PE) exam

The initial FE exam can be taken after one earns a bachelor’s degree. Engineers who pass this exam are commonly called engineers in training (EITs) or engineer interns (EIs). After meeting work experience requirements, EITs and EIs can take the second exam, called the Principles and Practice of Engineering.

Several states require engineers to take continuing education in order to keep their licenses. Most states recognize licenses from other states, as long as the other state’s licensing requirements meet or exceed their own licensing requirements.


Beginning industrial engineers usually work under the supervision of experienced engineers. In large companies, new engineers also may receive formal training in classes or seminars. As beginning engineers gain knowledge and experience, they move on to more difficult projects with greater independence to develop designs, solve problems, and make decisions.

Eventually, industrial engineers may advance to become technical specialists, such as quality engineers or facility planners. In that role, they supervise a team of engineers and technicians. Obtaining a master’s degree facilitates such specialization and thus advancement.

Many industrial engineers move into management positions because the work they do is closely related to the work of managers. For more information, see the profile on architectural and engineering managers.

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Senior Staff Engineer jobs

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Senior Staff Engineer Career Paths

Senior Staff Engineer
Program Manager Senior Manager Director Of Information
Chief Information Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Senior Product Manager Senior Manager
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Business Analyst Information Technology Manager
Director Of Technology And Services
11 Yearsyrs
Lead Engineer Chief Engineer
Engineering Director
13 Yearsyrs
Engineering Director Technical Director Production Manager
Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Manager Director Of Information
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager Operations Manager Regional Sales Manager
National Account Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Program Manager General Manager Account Manager
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Lead Engineer Project Manager Product Manager
Product Line Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager Senior Project Manager Senior Product Manager
Product Management Director
12 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Consultant Senior Consultant
Program Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Program Director Operations Director
Senior Director, Operations
14 Yearsyrs
Principal Engineer Senior Project Manager
Senior Product Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager
Senior Project Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Engineering Director General Manager Account Manager
Strategic Accounts Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Principal Engineer Program Manager General Manager
Vice President & General Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Senior Manager Engineering Director
Vice President Of Engineering
13 Yearsyrs
Chief Engineer Engineering Director Vice President, Technology
Vice President Of Global Operations
15 Yearsyrs
Lead Teacher Program Director Managing Director
Vice President Product Development
12 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Branch Manager Assistant Vice President
Vice President, Technology
11 Yearsyrs
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Senior Staff Engineer Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Asian

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • French

  • Chinese

  • Japanese

  • Carrier

  • Korean

  • German

  • Italian

  • Arabic

  • Mandarin

  • Hindi

  • Russian

  • Croatian

  • Basque

  • Telugu

  • Cherokee

  • Arapaho

  • Shan

  • Zulu

  • Malay

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Senior Staff Engineer

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Senior Staff Engineer

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Real Senior Staff Engineer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Staff Engineer Box, Inc. Redwood City, CA May 16, 2016 $263,000
Senior Staff Engineer Vmware, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Nov 23, 2016 $224,000 -
Senior Staff Reservoir Engineer Hunt Oil Company Dallas, TX Feb 26, 2016 $220,000 -
Senior Staff Engineer Vmware, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Sep 11, 2015 $220,000
Senior Staff Reservoir Engineer Hunt Oil Company Dallas, TX Jul 12, 2015 $219,400 -
Senior Staff Machinery Engineer Exxonmobil Development Company Spring, TX Jun 04, 2015 $214,100 -
Senior Staff Engineer, Production Cheniere Energy, Inc. Gregory, TX Jul 09, 2016 $200,000
Senior Staff Engineer Cheetah Mobile America, Inc. San Mateo, CA Mar 17, 2016 $199,920
Senior Staff Engineers, Application Platform Socialcode LLC San Francisco, CA Nov 30, 2016 $196,000 -
Senior Staff Engineer, Process Cheniere Energy, Inc. Cameron, LA Nov 16, 2015 $195,000
Senior Staff Engineer Home Box Office, Inc. New York, NY Aug 17, 2016 $190,000
Senior Staff Engineer Home Box Office, Inc. New York, NY Sep 07, 2015 $190,000
Senior Staff Data Engineer Credit Karma, Inc. San Francisco, CA Jul 03, 2016 $188,000 -
Senior Staff Engineer Kohl's Department Stores, Inc. Milpitas, CA Feb 02, 2016 $185,000
SR. Staff Engineer Fireeye, Inc. Milpitas, CA Sep 17, 2015 $147,000 -
SR. Staff Soc/Rtl Desgn. ENG. Asic Place/Route Flow Qualcomm Technologies Inc. Austin, TX Jun 09, 2016 $146,661 -
Senior Staff Engineer, Firmware Nextnav LLC Sunnyvale, CA Jul 28, 2016 $146,062
Senior Staff Engineer, Firmware Nextnav LLC Sunnyvale, CA Oct 01, 2015 $146,062
SR. Staff Engineer Inphi Corporation Santa Clara, CA Sep 18, 2015 $146,000
SR. Staff Engineer-Research Dolby Laboratories, Inc. Sunnyvale, CA May 14, 2015 $145,392 -
Senior Staff Engineer SK Hynix Memory Solutions Inc. San Jose, CA Dec 15, 2015 $145,392
SR. Staff Engineer, Physical Design Clariphy Communications, Inc. Los Altos, CA May 01, 2016 $145,392
SR. Staff Engineer-Product Architect Stratapps Fremont, CA Aug 20, 2015 $115,000
SR Staff Hrbp Cypress Semiconductor Corporation San Jose, CA Jul 09, 2016 $115,000 -
Senior Staff Engineer Seagate Us LLC Fremont, CA Apr 30, 2015 $114,691
Senior Staff Associatae Columbia University NY Feb 25, 2016 $114,520
Senior Staff Engineer Sling Media, Inc. Foster City, CA Jul 15, 2015 $114,400 -
Senior Staff Engineer Sling Media, Inc. Foster City, CA Sep 06, 2015 $114,400 -
Process Technology Development Senior Staff Engineer Stmicroelectronics, Inc. Albany, NY Sep 23, 2015 $114,379

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Top Skills for A Senior Staff Engineer


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Top Senior Staff Engineer Skills

  1. Hardware
  2. Architecture
  3. Safety
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed prototype hardware for SW developer.
  • Supported the system integrator to define the system ops concept, architecture, and interface definitions.
  • Enforced all policies and safety procedures.
  • Developed PC integration test bed laboratory.
  • Designed and developed Remote Execution using RMI interface to allow test execution on a remote machine.

Top Senior Staff Engineer Employers

Senior Staff Engineer Videos

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