average Enlarge Photo Brookings Institute A breakdown of software developers salaries across the U.S., where the average worker in the field brings in about $96,000 per year. In Silicon Valley, however, annual average earnings exceed $131,000. Email | Twitter | LinkedIn | Google+ Factors like cost of living, demand for skilled workers, and educational pedigree explain why technology workers in some markets make more money than their peers in other locales. But in Silicon Valley, where the average salary for software developers is $131,270, the primary variable that has driven pay way above the national average of $96,260 is the specialized skills that employers demand, according to a new analysis by the Brookings Institution , a Washington, D.C. think tank. The organization sliced and diced millions of job listings advertised online during 2013. Click the image in this story for a visual breakdown of software developer salaries nationwide. “The average vacancy requires higher value skills in San Jose than almost any other metropolitan area,” the report notes. “High-value programming languages and skills” like Java, Linux, C++, Python and other software engineering requirements were way more common in Silicon Valley job postings than other markets. That means tech employers in Silicon Valley prize coders who know more computer languages and have a deeper understanding of programming. Though the report doesn’t delve into other labor issues, the disproportionately high Silicon Valley salary numbers provide some context to efforts by some of the biggest companies in the industry to keep wages from growing even faster. Anti-poaching agreements between large companies and the increasing use of high numbers of skilled foreign-born workers are two of the tactics technology companies have employed to counter what they characterize as a lack of qualified domestic talent.
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