Computer Hardware Engineers: Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

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Job description

Computer Hardware Engineers research, design, develop, or test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use. May supervise the manufacturing and installation of computer or computer-related equipment and components.

  • Update knowledge and skills to keep up with rapid advancements in computer technology.
  • Build, test, and modify product prototypes, using working models or theoretical models constructed with computer simulation.
  • Write detailed functional specifications that document the hardware development process and support hardware introduction.
  • Specify power supply requirements and configuration, drawing on system performance expectations and design specifications.
Read more about what does a Computer Hardware Engineer really do at work and what is it like being and working as one.



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Salary

Average salary
$117840 per year

Average hourly wage
$57 per hour


Computer Hardware Engineers with little to no experience tend to make between $66700 and $86760 while the more experienced ones can earn over $146020 per year.

Top 5 paying statesHourlyAnnual
CA$63$131,570
DC$61$126,770
MD$60$125,290
WA$59$123,680
MA$59$123,650

One of the easiest ways to increase your salary as a Computer Hardware Engineer is to move to a higher paying state like CA. Right now, the highest paying states for Computer Hardware Engineers are CA, DC, MD, WA and MA.

However, a higher pay at CA doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the living expenses at CA might be twice as high than where you are currently at now.

Three other factors that can increase your salary as a Computer Hardware Engineer is the degree you hold, the industry you work in, and lastly the company you work for.


Requirements

Recommended degree level
Bachelor’s Degree

We asked other Computer Hardware Engineers what degree they had when they got the job and most of them said they had a Bachelor’s Degree followed by a Master’s Degree.

Other than that, we also asked them what did they major in and here are the most popular majors that came up.

Computer Engineering, General
Computer Hardware Engineering
Read more about how to become a Computer Hardware Engineer and the degree, training and education you need.

Pros and Cons

Here are some of the pros and cons of being a Computer Hardware Engineer.

PROS
Suitable for people who likes to solve problems mentally
Suitable for people who wants job security and a good working condition
This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.
One of the highest paid careers in the world
CONS
Not suitable for people who likes to help and teach others
It is hard to get into this career. A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.
Long working hours (More than 40 hours per week)

What is the job like

Job satisfaction
71%

Is this job meaningful
53%


71% of Computer Hardware Engineers said they were satisfied with their job and 53% said they feel like their job is making other people’s lives better.


Is this right for me

Best personality for this career
The Thinkers and The Builders

You can read more about these career personality types here.

People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally..

They also like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.




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Related career information

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