The salary of a software engineer in Germany can vary significantly depending on a number of factors, including the engineer's level of experience, the size and type of company they work for, and the location of the company. According to data from the German Federal Employment Agency, the median gross salary for a software developer in Germany is around €55,000 per year.

However, salaries for more experienced software engineers can be significantly higher, with some reaching six figures. It's also important to note that salaries in Germany are typically higher in the western part of the country, compared to the eastern part. Additionally, salaries in larger cities like Berlin and Munich tend to be higher than in smaller cities or rural areas. To know more about the salary of a Software Engineer in Germany I invite you to read the next blog post.

Software Engineer Salary in Germany

In the World Economic Forum’s latest Global Competitiveness Report, Germany ranks first as the world’s most innovative economy, with a score of 87.5 out of 100 in the ranking.

The Innovation Capability column — one of the 12 drivers of a country’s productivity tells Germany is home to some of the most distinguished researchers in various fields of science, including physics, mathematics, chemistry and engineering.

The country has one of the largest ICT markets in the world and the largest software market in Europe with 95,808 IT companies (software and hardware, in 2019, source: Statista) and estimates has 1.12 million employees in 2022.

The most popular jobs in Germany are:

  • Software developer and programmer.
  • Electronics engineer, electrician.
  • Healthcare worker and nurse.
  • IT consultant, IT analyst.
  • Software developer salary

A person working as a developer/programmer in Germany usually earns around 3,480 EUR per month. Salary ranges from 1,600 EUR (lowest) to 5,530 EUR (highest). This is the average monthly salary, including rent, transportation and other benefits.

Experience level is the most important factor in determining salary. Of course, the more years of experience, the higher the salary. Employees with two to five years of experience earn an average of 32% more than entry-level and junior employees across all industries and sectors.

Professionals with more than 5 years of work experience tend to earn an average of 36% more than those with 5 years or less of work experience. On average, IT professionals earn 60,500 euros, according to salary analysts at online employment platform Stepstone in their 2021 salary report, with men earning an average of 61,300 euros total per year more than women (56,000 euros).

Small startups offer many perks, but big salaries are not one of them. In general, companies with 1 to 10 employees tend to offer the lowest salaries (€60,000 on average) while those with 10,000 employees offer the highest salaries (€68,000). However, there is not much variation in developer salaries for companies with 11–10,000 employees.

Freelance vs. Full-time job

Both large and small businesses hire freelancers to benefit from their specific expertise. Therefore, it is not surprising that experienced and highly qualified freelancers are currently breaking price records.

In 2022, SAP freelancers are in high demand and highest paid. On average, they have increased their prices by €9.82 over last year. In general, freelancers working in the information technology industry earn an average of €87.36 (slightly lower than the 2021 average of €106.99).

It is important to mention that there is still a pay gap in today’s market, with women earning an average of €82. 5 per hour compared to the average hourly wage of men (€98.15). Freelancers continue to earn the most in the SAP sector with an average hourly salary of €111, followed by IT and management consulting with €110.

Freelancers offering their services in the IT infrastructure sector charge an average of 94€, followed by developers with an average hourly wage of 83€. Next are graphic designers or media and content producers with 69€ / hour.

Yes, freelance pays more, but it doesn’t include the perks of a job, so you can’t really compare the raw numbers.

  • Health insurance: employer pays half of the premium for employees. Self-employed, both parties pay themselves. If you’re young and healthy, going separately can be beneficial, but it can get very expensive quickly. Voluntarily staying in the mandatory system is a little more prudent, especially if you have or want to have children, but it will cost you around €650/month.
  • No unemployment insurance: if you can’t find your next contract, you earn nothing, while former employees get up to 60% (or 67%, if they have at least one child) in their one year final net income. As a freelancer

What is the salary of a Junior Software Engineer in Germany

According to data from the German Federal Employment Agency, the median gross salary for a junior software engineer in Germany is approximately €56,000 per year. This figure represents the average salary for a software engineer with less than two years of professional experience in the field. While this may seem like a high salary for someone just starting in their career, it's important to note that the cost of living in Germany is generally higher than in many other countries.

It's also worth noting that the salary of a junior software engineer can vary significantly depending on the specific company they work for. For example, a junior software engineer at a large, well-established tech company might have a higher salary than one working for a smaller start-up. Additionally, the location of the company can also impact the salary of a junior software engineer. Software engineers in major cities like Berlin and Munich tend to earn higher salaries than those in smaller cities or rural areas. The salary of a junior software engineer in Berlin is around €53,000 per year, while the salary of a software engineer in Munich is approximately €60,000 per year.

Finally, it's important to remember that the salary of a junior software engineer is likely to increase over time as they gain more experience and skills. Once the Junior Software Engineer has at least 5 years of experience he can apply to higher-paid positions where the median gross salary for a senior software engineer in Germany is approximately €70,000 per year

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