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James Gallagher

Joining a technology firm like Google is a dream for many. It represents the pinnacle of big tech companies. Google is everywhere in our lives, having built products such as the well-known Gmail, GSuite, and, of course, Google Search. It’s no wonder so many software engineers aspire to work for the company. Combine that with a Google software engineer salary that boasts a six-figure range.

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Compensation is often top of mind for any software engineer. Every job needs to pay the bills and some jobs do that better than others. With a job at Google, you’ll have no trouble earning a good salary. But, the question remains: what salary can you expect to earn at Google?

In this guide, we’re going to discuss Google salaries software engineers can expect. We’ll explore how much engineers earn, what benefits they get, and how compensation differs between different seniority levels.

Google Engineer Levels

Google, like many big technology firms, uses a tier-based system for compensation. Big firms often use this approach because their hierarchy is larger. Having a scale system also ensures that everyone at similar levels within the company earns a comparable salary.

To understand how much you can expect to earn, it’s important to know the Google software engineer levels. There are nine software development job titles at Google, which are as follows:

  1. Software Engineer II (L3 | 0-1 year of experience)
  2. Software Engineer III (L4 | 2+ years of experience)
  3. Senior Software Engineer (L5 | Manager I equivalent)
  4. Staff Software Engineer (L6 | Manager II equivalent)
  5. Senior Staff Software Engineer (L7 | Senior Manager)
  6. Principal Engineer (L8 | Director)
  7. Distinguished Engineer (L9 | Senior Director)
  8. Google Fellow (L10 | Vice President)
  9. Senior Google Fellow (L11 | Senior Vice President)

Most engineers at Google work in the lower brackets of the hierarchy. According to some former software engineers at Google, it’s very difficult to get promoted beyond the Staff Software Engineer level. This could be due to the scarcity of jobs so only the so-called cream of the crop gets promoted.

Google Software Engineer Salary

The average compensation you’ll earn as a software engineer at Google will depend on your experience and tier-based level. If you get started as an entry-level software engineer, your average total compensation will naturally lean toward the lower end of the scale. As you accrue experience and earn promotions, you can expect to earn a higher salary.

Google is definitely one of the top technology firms in terms of compensation. At lower levels, the compensation is equivalent to that offered by many other firms. But when you consider the higher levels, it’s clear Google favorably compensates their top-tier workers.

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Below are the average salaries you can expect to earn at Google by level. We’ve also included the estimated calculation of their bonuses and stock options.

Level NameTotalBaseBonusStock (/yr)

Data sourced from

Salary data was not made available for levels L9 to L11. Needless to say, one can immediately recognize that the salaries earned by Google software engineers are impressive at every level. To help you better understand these compensation packages, here’s a breakdown of their components:

  • Base compensation. This refers to the standard salary you earn. It’s the initial rate of compensation you will earn per annum.
  • Bonuses. These are offered to software engineers at Google on an annual basis and can vary from employee to employee.
  • Stock. Stock refers to the stock options given to you by Google. We’ll talk more about this in the following section.

All of these data points add up to create your total compensation package.

Google Software Engineer Stock Options

The stock options for Google software engineers are varied. Like in many other Silicon Valley technology firms, Google software engineers are issued Restricted Stock Units (RSUs). The company uses these to compensate employees through company shares.

RSUs are subject to a four-year vesting schedule at Google. Each year, 25 percent of your stock is vested (roughly at a rate of 2.08 percent per month). This means you will unlock 25 percent of your stock each year.

Google sometimes refers to its RSUs as Google Stock Units (GSUs). In addition, the vesting schedule for RSUs/GSUs can vary depending on the number of shares you receive. For instance, if you earn less than 32 GSUs, your stock will vest annually. If you earn between 64 and 159 GSUs, your stock will vest quarterly.

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Benefits of Working at Google

Do those salaries impress you? Would you believe there’s more to the Google engineer salary package than just cash bonuses and stock options? Well, as a software engineer you will also be eligible for a range of benefits, some of which are unique to Google.

For instance, Google provides a subsidized on-site chair or table massage to their employees. The company also provides employees and their families international personal travel year-round.

What’s more, Google software engineers receive $500 after the arrival of a new baby. This seeks to help employees take care of house cleaning, diaper bills, and other related expenses. Other benefits are standard among big technology firms. These can be divided into a few different categories.

These are the three main benefits offered to Google employees:

  • Insurance and wellness benefits
  • Transportation benefits
  • Home, financial, and other benefits

Insurance and Wellness Benefits

Vision Insurance
Pet Insurance
Sick LeaveUnlimited
Paternity Leave12 weeks
Paid Time Off15 days to start; increases to 20 days after working for the company for four years and to 25 days after that
Maternity Leave18 weeks
Gym On-Site
Free Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner5 days per week
Dental Insurance

Transportation Benefits

Regional Transit System
Company Shuttle
Bikes on CampusUsed to navigate around Google headquarters and surrounding areas

Home, Financial, and Other Benefits

On-Site Laundry
Phone Bill Reimbursement
Fertility and Adoption assistance
Tuition Reimbursement
Mega Backdoor Roth IRA
401(k)50 percent match available on all contributions up to $9,500; Google will match the greater of either: (a) 100 percent of your contributions up to $3,000 or (b) 50 percent of your contributions up to the $9,500 maximum.
Employee DiscountVaries between 5 to 15 percent off Google products
Surrogacy AssistanceReimbursement of up to $40,000 for fees
Donation Match
Pet-Friendly Workplace

With all of these considered, it’s clear that working at Google leads to significant benefits.

Google vs Other Technology Companies

How does Google fare when compared to the salaries at Microsoft and salaries at Amazon? That’s a good question. The below table includes comparisons between the compensation packages offered at Google and those offered by Microsoft and Amazon. This will help you determine which firm you can earn the highest salary:

ComparisonLevelGoogleOther Company
Google vs Amazon SalaryEntry-level$179,000$153,000
Google vs Amazon SalarySecond level$256,000$213,000
Google vs Amazon SalaryThird level$343,000$312,000
Google vs Microsoft SalaryEntry-level$179,000$156,000
Google vs Microsoft SalarySecond level$256,000$170,000
Google vs Microsoft SalaryThird level$343,000$218,000


Google offers one of the most attractive compensation packages in the technology industry. As an entry-level engineer, you’ll command a significant salary. What’s more, as you gain experience at Google, your salary and other compensation options like stock grants and bonuses will increase.

But salaries only make up part of the equation. You’ll also receive benefits like tuition reimbursement, a favorable 401(k) policy, and free meals five days per week. If you’re thinking about working for a big technology firm, Google is certainly worth considering.


What do Google software engineers do?

As a Google software engineer, you’ll be responsible for developing cutting-edge technologies that influence how users, well, use the platform. Google, above all else, is an engineering company. This means that you, as a software engineer, will be at the core of everything that Google builds and releases to the market.

How hard is it to get a job at Google?

Very. To express it in numbers, Google’s acceptance rate translates to only 0.2 percent. Because of the endless perks it provides, Google is extremely selective when it comes to hiring. It’s also worth noting that Google receives a large volume of applications every year, prompting the company to set the bar high for recruits.

Can I work at Google without a degree?

Yes. Google recently announced the lifting of the degree requirement for aspiring job seekers. This means that you’re eligible to apply at Google with or without a degree. Google is only one of the many other companies that have started prioritizing experience over academic pedigree. This has made Google accessible to candidates who may have graduated from bootcamps or taught themselves.

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What kinds of engineers work at Google?

Google, at its core, is an engineering company. So it’s only natural for the company to be filled with engineers who specialize in various fields. Foremost is the software engineers who develop complex software systems. Then there are the test engineers, security engineers, sales engineers, product managers, and so on.

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Average Software Engineering Manager Salary at Google, Inc.

Avg. Base Salary (USD)

The average salary for a Software Engineering Manager is $170,440

Is Average Software Engineering Manager Salary at Google, Inc. your job title? Find out what you should be paid
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What Do Software Engineering Managers Do?

A software engineering manager is an important component of any technological services company that deals with software. This individual is responsible for assembling a team of software engineers that can work quickly and successfully on software products. This team is largely responsible for providing maintenance on any software products that may malfunction, and they may also develop new software. While the software engineering manager may also work directly with software in a hands-on way, …Read more

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Big Tech salaries revealed: How much engineers, developers, and product managers make at companies including Amazon, Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft, Intel, Uber, IBM, and Salesforce

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Two people sitting in an office in front of four monitors and talking to each other while holding clipboards.
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  • Business Insider analyzed salary data for thousands of workers to reveal how much large tech companies pay.
  • We crunched the numbers for companies including Airbnb, Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, Snap, and Uber.
  • The data, which US companies report in visa applications for foreign workers, sheds light on how engineers, designers, and others are compensated in the competitive industry.

Big US technology companies have powered their way through the pandemic, posting impressive growth, minting money, and hiring rapidly.

In early July, the tech-industry association CompTIA reported that the sector experienced job growth in 10 out of the previous 12 months — a standout performance given the lockdowns last year. Tech firms added more than 80,000 workers in the US through the first half of 2021, it added.

Google's parent company, Alphabet, hired more than 4,000 employees in the second quarter alone. Overall, more than 300,000 open tech jobs were posted in June, with software and app developers, IT-support specialists and project managers, systems engineers and architects, and systems analysts in highest demand. Jobs in emerging tech, such as AI, accounted for more than a quarter of open positions.

Companies are required to disclose information including salary (or, in some cases, salary ranges) when they hire foreign workers under the H1-B visa program, giving insight into what these tech giants are willing to shell out for talent.

So, to get a sense of what salaries in the industry are like these days, Business Insider analyzed the US Office of Foreign Labor Certification's disclosure data for permanent and temporary foreign workers to find out what companies pay employees in key roles, including engineers, designers, and salespeople.

When you're done checking out this industry data, take a look at Insider's searchable database of over 250,000 salaries from more than 250 companies so you can know how much you should be paid.

Google's software engineers can make more than $300,000.

Alphabet & Google CEO Sundar Pichai
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Google is often touted as one of the best places to work, with compensation to match.

A software engineer was offered $353,000, a vice president of engineering can get $475,000, and a senior vice president recently took in an annual salary of $650,000.

Here's a look at many other positions and how much they pay across Google.

The company's Cloud business has been aggressively building out its workforce as it tries to catch its larger cloud rivals Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

Here's a peek at the salaries Google Cloud pays US-based engineers, managers, and more.

Amazon cloud-solutions architects are paid $90,800 to $185,000, depending on location and skills.

Adam Selipsky AWS CEO
Albert Gea/Reuters

Amazon's cloud unit, now run by Adam Selipsky, has continued hiring for technical and business talent to support its dominant cloud-computing business.

Insider reviewed more than 200 H-1B visas that Amazon's cloud unit applied for from January to June to reveal how much it paid software developers, data scientists, marketers, salespeople, business analysts, and more. The highest-paid employees, according to that data, can make as much as $185,000 in base salary.

Check out the details here.

A Facebook engineering director can make roughly $360,000

Sheryl Sandberg
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Facebook employees consistently make well into the six figures. An in-house ad-agency director hired in the past year earns a salary of just over $330,000. An engineering director makes roughly $360,000.

Pay depends on the job, of course, but increasingly on where the worker is based, too. A data analyst in California, for example, makes $130,000 to $150,000 a year. One data analyst in Texas makes $128,000, and another $111,000. A software engineer in New York makes $160,000. One in Rhode Island and another in Texas make $118,000 a year.

Here are all the latest data on Facebook salaries.

Microsoft's highest-paying jobs include software engineers, sales managers, and researchers.

Microsoft employees
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We analyzed Microsoft's more than 1,400 active foreign-worker visas in 2020 to find the titles with the highest salaries and provided a salary range for each role.

We focused this list on roles that pay $175,000 or more at the high end of the range and categorized them based on information we found in job postings. The highest salary we found, for a channel sales manager, was $250,000.

In internal Microsoft surveys obtained by Business Insider, 55% of staff said in 2020 that their combined salary, bonus, and equity was competitive with similar jobs at other companies, down from 65% in 2017.

Here's the full list of jobs and salaries, covering positions such as cloud-solutions architect, legal counsel, silicon engineer, and software engineering lead.


Engineering google software manager salary

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