International data engineer salary and rate ranges - Germany, Switzerland, UK, Eastern Europe, India and the USA

What can you expect to pay data engineers, or earn as a data engineer, in some of the major tech talent markets around the world?

Data engineeringUPDATED ON August 24, 2022

John Adam K&C head of marketing

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Hero image for blog post on international data engineer salary and rate ranges featuring data scientist character and data themed background

In this blog, we’ll analyse the best local data sources available to create a snapshot of average data engineer salary and rate ranges  across several major international labour markets for IT specialists:

  • Germany
  • Switzerland
  • UK
  • Eastern Europe
  • India
  • USA

You can use the data below to benchmark your current income as a data engineer. Or, if you employ or contract data engineers, you can benchmark your current costs against the broader market. Keep in mind that the salary figures presented are averages for data engineer roles in the different international markets we cover. They do not take into consideration tech stack specifics or other areas of expertise and experience which might mean you should expect to pay more, or less, for the particular data engineer profiles you currently work with or plan to recruit for.

As a nearshore IT outsourcing services provider, Munich-based K&C primarily recruits IT specialists including data engineers and architects in Eastern Europe and emerging nearshore destinations. If you’d like a more accurate assessment of current salaries and rates for data engineers with a specific tech stack and experience profile, please do get in touch and we’d be delighted to help.

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Data engineers – a profession in increasing demand

As the Google Trends chart below shows, interest in Data Engineers has rocketed over the past decade and especially over the last few years. The reason is simple: the role and importance of data to businesses and other organisations has grown exponentially in recent years. And as companies and other organisations collect, analyse and base decisions and actions on ever-increasing data volumes, doing so effectively becomes increasingly crucial.

Chart showing Google Trends data between 2012 and 2022 for the career term Data Engineer

Source: Google Trends

Poor data architecture not only makes collecting and using data less effective, losing what can be a crucial competitive edge, but much more expensive. Adding data engineers to a software development team can potentially lead to millions in savings in cloud computing resources and other costs or opportunities lost over the lifetime of a data-intensive software system or application.

In recognition of that reality, and the rapid growth in the number of data-intensive software systems and applications in recent years, demand for data engineers is rising quickly. However, like most specialist IT and software development roles, there is a deficit of high quality data engineers on the market.

As one of the most qualified and specialist roles in software development, the shortfall in data engineering specialists is particularly acute, even in the context of the tech talent labour market. That has seen the average data engineer salary range and rates rise considerably over the past couple of years in every international market.

There has also been a narrowing in the difference between the salary and rates commanded by especially more senior data engineers based in different parts of the world. Highly qualified, experienced professionals are not cheap, regardless of where they are based. But as we’ll see, there are still differences between geographies that can add up to considerable cost savings for organisations with the flexibility to recruit data engineers internationally.

If you hire or contract data engineers, additional costs like taxes, pension contributions and office expenses are also usually much lower in developing and emerging economies compared to high-salary economies such as those of Western Europe and North America.

Let’s dive into the data.

Data engineer rates – is it more cost-effective to work with an IT outsourcing partner or to hire or contract directly?

If you source the data engineers your company or projects need, you can expect to pay your IT outsourcing partner a margin that will usually fall somewhere between 20% and 30% on top of salary and related expenses. Contracting or employing the specialists you need directly can, in theory, be slightly cheaper because you won’t pay that margin.

However, you should be experienced in recruiting in the labour market(s) you plan to hire from. You should be experienced in recruiting software development and tech specialists specifically. And you should have the internal resources to manage that recruitment process effectively and in a timely way. If you are recruiting from international markets you also have to consider payroll, onboarding, offboarding and all the other administrative, legal and cultural elements involved.

If you have the experience and resources to directly recruit the data engineers you need where you plan to effectively, that might be the best approach for you to take. If you don’t, working with an experienced IT outsourcing company could ultimately save you a lot of money, and headache.

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Average data engineer salary range in Germany

Germany is Europe’s largest economy and its second-largest labour market for software developers and other IT specialists behind only the UK. As a relatively high-salary economy with a deficit of tech talent compared to demand, what is the average data engineer salary in Germany?

The jobs portal Stepstone.de puts the average annual data engineer salary in Germany at €50,600 annually or €4217 a month. Stepstone puts data engineer salaries at the lower end of the scale for more junior positions at €43,700 a year or €3642 a month and at €61,400 a year or €5117 a month.

However, our experience would suggest these figures are out of date and you should expect to pay at least 30% more on the German labour market in 2022.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in Germany based on Stepstone.de data

Source: Stepstone.de

Data from another jobs portal, de.talent.com, paints a slightly different, and more realistic, picture based on data from a sample set of 710 data engineer salaries. It puts the median average data engineer salary in Germany at €65,000 a year or €5417 a month. At the lower end of the scale, junior data engineer roles start at €48,000 a year or €4000 a month and at the upper end, more senior positions are shown to command up to €90,000 a year or €7500 a month within the average range.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in Germany based on de.talent.com data

Source: de.talent.com

Average data engineer salary range in Switzerland

Switzerland is one of the highest salary economies in the world and that is inevitably reflected in the salary levels IT specialists including data engineers command in the central European country. Let’s see how much more Swiss organisations should be prepared to pay locally employed data engineers compared across the border in Germany.

The jobs portal ch.talent.com estimates the median average data engineer salary in Switzerland as CHF111,250 (€115,189) a year or CHF9271 (€9599) a month, based on a data set of 114 reported salaries. The data indicates more junior data engineering roles in Switzerland start at a still relatively high CHF100,000 (€103,541) a year or CHF8333 (€8628) a month.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in Switzerland based on ch.talent.com data

Source: ch.talent.com

Data from the specialist jobs portal SwissDevJobs.ch corresponds very closely to that from ch.talent.com, with the median data engineer salary given as CHF105,000 (€108,718) a year or CHF8750 (€9060) a month.  The data engineer salary range given for Switzerland is also broader, with the bottom 10% earning CHF75,000 (€77,656) a year or CHF6250 (€6471) a month and the data engineers with salaries in the top 10% earning CHF137,500 (€142,369) a year or CHF11,458 (€11,864) a month.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in Switzerland based on SwissDevJobs.ch data

Source: SwissDevJobs.ch

Average data engineer salary range in the United Kingdom

The UK is Europe’s second largest economy behind Germany but employs more software developers and IT specialists including data engineers, making it the continent’s largest labour market for tech specialists. Let’s see what the average data engineer salary is in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

The jobs portal uk.talent.com puts the median salary for data engineers in the UK at £55,000 (€64,827) a year or £4583 (€5402) a month. At the lower end of the scale, junior data engineer roles offer salaries starting at around £40,163 (€47,339) a year or £3347 (€3945) a month, rising to £77,467 (€91,309) a year or £6456 (€7610) a month for senior positions.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in the UK based on uk.talent.com data

Source: uk.talent.com

The jobs data portal itjobswatch.co.uk, however, puts the median salary for data engineers at the higher level of £70,000 (€82,508) a year or £5833 (€6875) a month, based on 2099 quoted salaries. The bottom 10% of data engineer salaries in the UK are given as £45,000 (€53,041) a year or £3750 (€4420) a month. The top 10% of UK data engineer salaries rise to £96,250 (€113,448) a year or £8021 (€9454) a month.

Table showing average data engineer salary range in the UK based on itjobswatch.uk data

Source: itjobswatch.co.uk

Itjobswatch.co.uk data also indicates UK-based data engineers specialised in working with AWS or Big Data earn a median salary of £10,000 a year more than other data engineers at £80,000 (€94,294) a year or £6667 (€7858) a month.

Average data engineer salary range in Eastern Europe

Companies and other organisations from high salary economies in Western Europe and North America often hire or contract IT specialists including data engineers in nearshore locations, especially Eastern Europe. While the gap in salaries commanded by nearshore specialists has, especially at more senior levels, narrowed compared to those in high salary economies, there is still a difference. Tax and other cost savings can make the nearshore outsourcing of tech roles even more attractive.

There are, however, many countries in Eastern Europe and some differences between the salary levels IT specialists like data engineers can expect. Here we’ll look specifically at data engineer salary ranges in the two biggest tech labour markets in Eastern Europe, Poland and Ukraine for insight.

Average data engineer salary range in Poland

The Polish payroll data platform Wynagrodzenia.pl says the median salary for mid-level data scientists/engineers in Poland is PLN9650 (€2031)  a month, or PLN115,800 (€24,373) annually.

Infographic showing average mid-seniority data engineer salary range in Poland based on httpswynagrodzenia.pl data

Source: Wynagrodzenia.pl

Junior data scientist roles in Poland command a median salary, says Wynagrodzenia.pl data, of PLN6700 (€1410) a month or PLN80,400 (€16,920) a year.

Infographic showing average junior data engineer salary range in Poland based on httpswynagrodzenia.pl data

Source: Wynagrodzenia.pl

Senior data scientist/engineer roles in Poland, says the same data source, command a median salary of PLN13,060 (€2749) a month or PLN156,720 (€32,988) a year, rising to PLN17,350 (€3652) a month or PLN208,200 (€43,821) a year at the 75th percentile.

Infographic showing average senior data engineer salary range in Poland based on httpswynagrodzenia.pl data

Source: Wynagrodzenia.pl

However, in our experience at K&C, those sums seem lower than realistic for the current market. That’s backed up by recent job ads like the one below posted on pl.jooble.org for a data engineer. A salary of between PLN24,000 (€5051) and PLN30,000 (€6314) a month is advertised for a remote role. That’s more in line with our current experience for senior data engineer salary ranges in Poland.

Data engineer job ad on pl.jooble.org

Source: pl.Jooble.org

Average data engineer salary range in Ukraine

Despite Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in early 2022 and the continuing war on the country’s territory (mainly live in the east and south of Ukraine), the country’s IT services sector has remained resilient with specialists continuing to work for mainly international employers from safe regions of the country. And it’s still the second largest nearshore labour market for IT specialists. So how much do data engineers earn in Ukraine?

Djinni.co, Ukraine’s largest specialist jobs site for IT roles puts the median data engineer salary in Ukraine at $4000-$4500 (at the time of writing, the dollar and euro are at almost precise parity) a month or $48,000-$54,000 a year. At the lower end of the scale, junior data engineers earn on average $1500-$2500 a month, or $18,000-$30,000 a year in Ukraine and senior roles can command $6500-$7500+ a month or $78,000-$90,000+ annually.

At

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in Ukraine based on djinni.co data

Source: Djinni.co

The Djinni.co data is in line with our direct experience of hiring data engineers in Ukraine.

Average data engineer salary range in India

India is well known as the largest IT outsourcing market in the world and has a huge labour pool of IT specialists. While it is known for lower costs compared to high salary economies, like Eastern Europe, the gap has recently shrunk. But it still exists and in combination with the large labour pool makes India a popular destination for hiring tech talent like data engineers.

in.talent.com data puts the median annual salary for a data engineer in India at ₹1,500,000 (€18,684) or ₹125,000 (€1557) a month. Junior data engineers in India earn around ₹1,000,000 (€12,456) a year or ₹83,333 (€1038) a month. Senior professionals can earn up to ₹2,578,833 (€32, 122).

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in India based on in.talent.com data

Source: in.talent.com

However, as was the case with talent.com salary data for Poland, those data engineer salaries sound lower than is likely to be the case on the market. Real data engineer salary levels in India are likely to be comparable to those in Poland and Ukraine.

Average data engineer salary range in the United States of America

The USA is both the world’s largest economy and the world’s largest tech sector. It also boasts the largest tech labour pool in the world but demand is also so high that it far outstrips supply, pushing up salaries. Let’s see how that impacts average data engineer salaries in the USA.

Talent.com data puts the median salary for a data engineer in the USA at $123,285 a year or $10,274 a month based on 10,000 salaries. Junior roles start at around $97,500 a year or $8125 a month and can rise to $165,000 a year or $13,750 a month for senior roles.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in the USA based on talent.com data

Source: talent.com

Alternative data from the jobs portal ZipRecruiter.com roughly matches up with that. The annual median data engineer salary in the USA is put at $122,411,or $10,203 a month, which is almost exactly the same as the talent.com figure. However, ZipRecruiter puts the salary for junior data engineer roles as starting from $61,000 a year or $5083 a month, which seems more realistic for entry level positions.

However, the ZipRecruiter data also shows salaries going higher for senior roles, which it indicates can command salaries of up to $182,000 annually or $15,167 a month.

Infographic showing average data engineer salary range in the USA based on ZipRecruiter.com data

Source: ZipRecruiter.com

Hire the data engineers you need for your next project through K&C

K&C is a Munich-based IT outsourcing and custom software development company with over 20 years of experience putting together and managing software development teams from Eastern Europe.

Lean on our experience of recruiting data engineers and other IT specialists from nearshore markets for your next project. We offer flexible models from building and handing over your nearshore team to IT outsourcing with full delivery management and recruitment.

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