Organizations need qualified systems software engineers to help in the selection, creation, operation and expansion of computer systems. Like software engineers who develop applications, these engineers use their technical expertise to develop software; in this case, the software tends to be a complete system rather than a stand-alone application.
The software engineering field is growing at an above average pace. With computer security threats on the rise, employers search for systems software engineers who have computer security backgrounds, degrees or certifications. Are you ready to put your talents to work?
Organizations that employ systems software engineers generally expect a bachelor’s degree as a minimum requirement. Graduate degrees may be required for more complex job roles.
Common degrees held by systems software engineers include computer science, computer systems and software engineering degrees. The degree programs listed below can also be beneficial.
Software engineers who focus on systems software are responsible for building systems that companies and manufacturers will use. This goes beyond creating a single application, such as a word processor, to an entire system that will serve the needs of the organization. For example, an organization may need a complete communications system or a corporate intranet.
Some of the daily tasks of a systems software engineer include the following:
Software engineers are often involved in the development of more complex computer systems for meeting the needs of a specific segment of users. For example, avid computer gamers require high-performance computer systems that can handle the graphic and bandwidth demands of gaming.
In 2006, software engineers specializing in systems software earned an average income of $85,370 with those at the highest end of the spectrum earning over $125,000. National estimates for 2007 put the mean annual wage at $90,780.
The highest paying jobs are concentrated in central California with the San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara and Stockton areas employing about 19,000 computer systems software engineers who earn average salaries exceeding $110,000 per year.