If you’re a recent graduate or an IT professional looking for a rewarding career path, a Software Engineer can be a fantastic option – especially if you’re located in Singapore, with the local tech industry growing at a rapid rate.

As a leading employment agency in Singapore, one of the most common questions we’re asked by jobseekers considering a role in this field is, how much is a Software Engineer’s salary?

In this blog, we help you answer this burning question, and provide you with some knowledge about software engineers that will give you the key information you need to determine if this career path is a good match for your talents and experience.

What does a Software Engineer do?

As a Software Engineer your role will involve designing and developing software solutions to meet the needs of organisations and clients. Your sound knowledge of engineering concepts and software design and coding allows you to excel in this role.

While most software engineers specialise in a particular area, such as databases, web applications or operating systems, within your daily tasks you’ll enjoy plenty of variety and opportunities for growth. On a given day you could be coding and designing software solutions, providing technical support, monitoring performance of software or fixing errors and bugs.

Related: Explore our career advice page for expert insights

How much is a Software Engineer’s salary in Singapore?

Your earning potential as a Software Engineer is influenced by your level of experience as well as the industry you work in. According to the Robert Half Salary Guide, a comparison of the expected salary range (exclusive of bonuses, benefits and the Central Provider Fund) of software engineers in the commerce and industry field and financial services field is as follows.

Commerce & industry:

  • Beginner – $84,000
  • Mid-level – $100,000
  • Advanced – $151,000

Financial services:

  • Beginner – $104,000
  • Mid-level – $151,000
  • Advanced – $188,000

In addition to the higher financial reward as knowledge and experience grows, the demand for software engineers also increases, with advanced skills in high demand.

What is the expected career pathway of a Software Engineer?

With the above salary range in mind, what is the expected career path you may follow from beginner to advanced? Starting out in the field in the beginner range ($84,000–$104,000) as an Associate Software Engineer, you can expect to progress to a mid-level ($100,000–$151,000) Software Engineer role once you have a few years of experience under your belt.

As your experience and skill set grows, you can eventually move into more senior positions such as a Software Engineering Manager, Head of Software Engineering and potentially, Chief Technology Officer, where your earnings will be in the advanced bracket of $151,000–$188,000.

Related: Find out what an IT Director earns in Singapore

What are the key skills and responsibilities of a Software Engineer?

From client liaison to technical intelligence, the key skills and responsibilities of a Software Engineer are many and varied.

Depending on your level of experience, you may be required to:

  • code programs to develop new software to meet a need or to improve the performance of existing software
  • conduct performance reviews or unit testing to ensure optimum efficiency
  • fix programming issues or debug software as needed
  • discuss software requirements with management or clients to effectively plan new solutions.

To give yourself the best start in the role, you will need a bachelor’s degree in computer science and be skilled in programming languages, user interface design, software development, testing and debugging, project management, communication and problem solving. As you develop these key skills and take on more responsibility, you can really maximise your earning potential as a software engineer

Related: Find out how to become a Web Developer in Singapore

Is the demand for software engineers in Singapore high?

Today, many of the world’s biggest tech companies are setting up key operations right here on our shores, including Facebook’s new Asian data centre, leading to an explosion of opportunities in tech. This in turn has resulted in a huge demand for software engineering talent, with a projected 50,000 local information communication jobs expected to be created in Singapore over the next few years. With demand currently exceeding supply, offers for skilled software engineers are often higher than expected salary range, particularly for those at the advanced level.

As Suriani Norahim, Technology Division Director at Robert Half Singapore explains, opportunities are available across a wide and diverse range of industries. ‘From telecommunications to finance, manufacturing to retail services, and just about everything in between, organisations large and small rely upon skilled software engineers to design and manage their essential systems. With technology now such an integral part of successful business operations, there has never been a better time to pursue a career in this exciting field, particularly in Singapore as more and more global companies open up the central hub for their Southeast Asian operations right here.’

Related: Search for your dream job in Singapore

Good to know before you dive in

So you know the basics of what they do and have an understanding of how much a software engineer’s salary is, and you think it sounds like a great fit. What else do you need to know before you dive in? Firstly, teamwork is an integral part of the job, with most software engineers working closely together to solve problems. You should also be prepared to spend a lot of time perfecting the software you create, with extensive testing and debugging before launch being an integral requirement of the role.

Related: Learn how to become a Security Architect in Singapore

Keen to step into a career as a software engineer?

At Robert Half, we can help you land you find the ideal position to start and progress your career as a software engineer in Singapore. Talk to our experienced Singapore recruitment team today on +65 3163 8415 or upload your resume online and we’ll be in touch.