However, those who have completed a work-study programme usually start their career on a salary of €44,900, while an engineer with a doctorate degree can expect a starting salary of approximately €56,100. In terms of company size, the bigger the company, the higher the salary. For example, entry-level employees in companies with up to 50 employees earn on average €42,600, while this climbs to approximately €51,700 in companies with more than 5,000 employees. There are also clear differences between the individual sectors: The best entry level salary awaits engineers in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry (average €51,200), electronics/electrical engineering and vehicle construction (in each case approximately €50,300). In contrast, the lowest salaries are earned in engineering and planning offices (approximately €40,200) and in the construction industry (€41,500 on average).
How do engineers' salaries in Germany develop with increasing professional experience?
The longer an engineer works in the profession, the higher their salary. This is particularly true of engineering, as shown in the current salary test conducted by the online portal ingenieurkarriere.de. While one to two years of professional experience bring an annual gross salary of approximately €46,600; this increases by around €10,000 after six to eleven years. After another five years, this salary increases to an average of €62,600 and, with professional experience of 16–20 years, subsequently rises to around €68,000. Responsibility within a job also often grows over time, which also has an impact on earnings. For example, an engineer with project management responsibilities can earn about €56,900 in this position after three to five years. Engineers who take on personnel responsibilities and become team or group leaders over the course of their career receive an average of €57,500 after the same period of time.
Where do engineers in Germany earn the most?
As in many other professions, there are strong regional salary differences in the engineering profession. According to the salary database gehalt.de, the lowest salaries can be found in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Saxony-Anhalt and Brandenburg. Hesse offers the best earnings prospects, followed by Baden-Wurttemberg and Bavaria. If you want to apply for an engineering degree in the north of Germany, Hamburg has the best salary prospects.
Which sectors have the highest salaries?
When comparing engineers' salaries, it is also worth looking at the different industries, as they have more influence on an engineer's earnings than their specialisation. The question of which engineers earn the most is therefore closely linked to their field of activity.
What do engineers in Germany earn in science?
Engineers who opt for a career in an academic environment are usually paid according to the collective agreement for civil service (TVoeD) or the collective agreement for the civil service in the individual federal states (TV-L). Both contracts comprise a total of 15 levels of pay, whereby doctoral students and postdocs are usually classified in pay band 13 (E 13). Within the individual bands, a further distinction is made between different levels of experience, which is why the salary of a research assistant with no personnel responsibility can range between approximately €3,600 and €5,400 per month. Professors whose salaries are determined according to the so-called W Salaries will receive the following earnings:
- W1 for junior professors: between approximately €4,000 and €4,700
- W2 for professors: between approximately €4,700 and €5,900
- W3 for professors in management positions: between approximately €5,600 and €6,700