How much do machine learning engineers make?

With a projected growth of 38.6% from 2021-2028, machine learning engineers may be one of the best industries within AI to build your knowledge. On the technology bandwagon, machine learning may be one of the most sought-after roles that companies target to boost their sales.

With its promise of boosting the efficiency of companies and optimizing time by creating custom tools, machine learning engineers are requisite to any workplace to guarantee business success.

Find out how much you can earn as a machine learning engineer and what skills you need to hone in order to bump that number!

Here is a summary of this guide to give you a headstart:

  • Machine learning engineers make an average salary of $127,303 as per data given in various recruitment websites
  • Your ML engineer salary can vary depending on the machine learning skills you possess and your proficiency in them
  • As you gain experience in the field, your machine learning engineer salary can increase due to more practical experience
  • Data scientists perform more report-based data analytics work that leads to lesser salaries than machine learning engineers
  • Top employers that offer the highest ML engineer salary include Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, etc.

Before getting into the industry, here are a few questions to clear your doubts:

With Hiration’s Online Resume Builder, you can create an excellent machine learning engineer resume from our pre-made templates to help you bag a high-paying machine learning engineer job!

What Does Machine Learning Mean?


Machine learning is a branch of artificial intelligence that facilitates accurate prediction of outcomes based on data-driven algorithms by manipulating software applications.

They develop algorithms that deploy statistical models to analyze input data and predict output based on that. The ultimate goal is to bump the efficiency of operations and increase performance in companies by creating appropriate AI tools.

Through AI tools that complement the company’s goals and target audience, it helps them develop and enhance their ideas to appeal better to their audience.

Find out more: Who is a machine learning engineer?

Machine Learning Engineers Roles and Responsibilities

Aside from handling big data and modifying tools, companies may have additional responsibilities like this machine learning engineer job description from Adobe:

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Push the boundaries of online on-policy recommendation and optimization systems
  • Develop and implement scalable and efficient models on large-scale datasets to address various business problems through using sophisticated statistical modeling, machine learning techniques.
  • Solve challenging Data Science problems such as online learning, reinforcement learning, etc. when solving business problems in digital marketing.
  • Gather, synthesize and interpret disparate quantitative information sources, develop meaningful insights, and clearly disseminating to key partners
  • Collaborate with product management and engineering groups to develop new products and features.
  • Create a winning culture built on collaboration and shared accomplishments- have fun along the way!

Requirements

  • Deep understanding of statistical modeling, machine learning, deep learning, and analytics concepts, and a track record of solving problems with these methods.
  • A strong proficiency in querying and manipulating large data sets for analytical purposes using SQL-like languages (Hive/Hadoop experience preferred)
  • Proficient in one or more programming languages such as Python, R
  • Strong analytical and quantitative problem-solving ability.
  • Ph.D. or MS degree in Computer Science, Statistics, Applied Math, Electrical Engineering, Operations Research, Econometrics, or other related fields.
  • Excellent communication, relationship skills, and a great teammate.

Also read: What are the roles and responsibilities of a machine learning engineer?

Are Machine Learning Engineers Well Paid?


Instead of conducting niche surveys, we have amassed data from popular job posting websites which house real-time employers offering job-specific salaries. For machine learning engineers, while the number varies, the variance itself is small as it falls under a similar range.

From the job entries posted on recruitment websites, here is what machine learning engineering jobs earn on average:

  • Indeed says that machine learning engineer jobs offer around USD 140,923 yearly as the average income
  • On the other hand, PayScale argues that they get paid an average of $113,358 per year
  • Glassdoor finds the average machine learning engineering salary to be $131,001 on a yearly average
  • Salary has observed the yearly average stipend for machine learning engineer jobs to be USD 121,233
  • Whereas, the recruitment tycoon LinkedIn says that the average pay for machine learning engineering jobs is USD 130,000

ML Engineer Salary and Years of Experience


More than academic expertise, machine learning engineers are defined by their practical knowledge or years of experience.

On the spectrum of salaries, the more years of experience you have and the more number of people you manage, the higher will be your machine learning salary.

Depending on the data compiled by PayScale, here is a rundown of how your pay can spike depending on your years of practical experience.

  • Machine learning engineer salary for freshers can be around $97,090 per year from the weight of their degree alone.
  • Junior machine learning engineer salary with around 1-4 years of experience is usually $112,057 as they have a mix of theoretical and practical knowledge.
  • Mid-career machine learning engineers with 5-9 years of experience through expertise in machine learning can earn $138,351 and above depending on location, number of people to manage, and the company’s size.
  • Senior machine learning engineer salary with 10-19 years of experience is a yearly average salary of $150,360.
  • Whereas a seasoned professional with 20 years of experience and above have a machine learning engineering salary of $162,000.

machine-learning-engineer-salary-experience

Source: PayScale

If you are an entry-level machine learning engineer, consider building your expertise with a few machine learning engineer certifications that can give you more practical experience aside from your degree.

Also read: Get machine learning engineer jobs

Machine Learning Engineer Salary VS Data Scientist


Machine learning engineers perform a combination of software engineering and data science and involve manipulating big data as a subset of Artificial Intelligence.

On the other hand, data scientists can be more report-focused or data analysis-centric than performing software engineering.

Due to this gap in functions performed and extent of work scope, machine learning engineer jobs make more than data scientist jobs.

machine-learning-engineer-salary-data-science

Source: PayScale

Along with that comes the complex career options that data scientists have while it is easier for machine learning engineers to travel up their career paths.

PayScale says that while an average data scientist salary is around $96,000 and above, machine learning engineers can make up to $113,143 and more.

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Engineer Salary


Artificial Intelligence comprises a much bigger area of study than machine learning, which is itself a subset of artificial intelligence. In this world of IT, artificial intelligence engineers tend to make more than machine learning engineers due to the extent of functions performed.

While the average ML engineer salary is USD 127,303, here is what artificial intelligence engineers are earning:

  • PayScale says that AI engineer salary is usually $125,000 as a yearly average
  • On the other hand, Ziprecruiter finds yearly artificial intelligence engineer salary to be $164,769
  • Glassdoor has observed average AI engineer salary to be $119,297 yearly

Artifical intelligence engineer salary can be higher given the right location, company size, popularity, etc. These numbers are an average from all of the job postings on their websites and it can change drastically sometimes.

Skills that Affect Your ML Engineer Salary


In the world of machine learning, there are a few revered skills that can add great value to your candidacy. Possessing these skills means that you are a knowledgeable employee who can negotiate their salary if you find it to be unsatisfactory.

Aside from expertise in basic programming languages like Python, R, Scala, C++, and Java, you would also need to be acquainted with frameworks such as Keras, Tensorflow, PyTorch, etc.

You would also need to have natural language processing skills, data modeling, and evaluation skills to be a successful machine learning engineer.

Also read: How to become a machine learning engineer

Polish Your Skills to Get Better Jobs

Aside from increasing your work experience, you should constantly try to improve your skills through theoretical knowledge. Machine learning is a recent field that is set to grow exponentially. Keeping up with it would mean constant education.

You could do a few machine learning certifications and learn new skills or refine your existing skill set. Doing so would help you branch out and target a wider range of opportunities, making you a legible candidate for more machine learning engineer jobs.

After you familiarize yourself with these skills, you need to show them on paper via projects. GitHub can be your best friend when it comes to documenting your projects. Adding your GitHub profile on your machine learning resume can be a great way to impress recruiters and show your caliber.

Along with that, it wouldn't be greatly advantageous to prepare yourself for machine learning interview questions so that you have your answers ready, and to minimize stuttering and lack of answers during your ML job process.

You can check this guide on machine learning project ideas to get inspiration and add some sparkle to your resume and career!

According to data amassed from PayScale, here is to what extent your salary would be affected by various machine learning skills:

machine-learning-engineer-salary-skills

Source: PayScale

Popular Employers and Their Average Machine Learning Engineer Salary


With complex tools and mechanisms, these popular employers offer machine learning engineer salaries that rank among the top.

  • Glassdoor says that machine learning engineer salary Amazon can be anywhere from $100,481 to $302,894 for machine learning engineers

  • Whereas, an average Google machine learning engineer earns between $72,000 to $313,797 as the highest payer for an ML engineer

  • Machine learning engineer salary Apple can range from $119,224 to $267,481 depending on skills and years of experience

  • On the other hand, machine learning engineer salary Facebook can be from $185,350 to $207,430 as a yearly average, which is a much higher starting salary than the rest says Salary

  • Microsoft offers a pay of $128,514 to $149,789 for its machine learning engineer employees

Working at these companies would take skills and practical experience, which you can hone by working at other companies.

Find out more: How to become a Google machine learning engineer

Machine Learning Engineer Salary in U.S Cities

While machine learning engineer salary can vary depending on skillset and experience, it can vary by geographical location too. Some cities in the United States offer higher pay owing to the increase in cost of living. Here is a breakdown of machine learning engineer salary in various cities:

City Machine Learning Engineer Salary
San Jose, CA $137,988
Mountain View, CA $137,569
Sunnyvale, CA $136,862
San Francisco, CA $133,941
Cupertino, CA $132,286
Santa Clara, CA $126,350
Palo Alto, CA $123,832
San Diego, CA $121,660
Seattle, WA $121,260
New York, NY $121,139
Cambridge, MA $117,833
Pittsburgh, PA $112,965

California is one of the cities hosting a higher pay range for ML engineers. A good skill set and experience can assist you with your search for higher paying ML jobs in your desired city.

Key Takeaways

Machine learning engineer salaries depend on a variety of features. Starting from skills, they can change depending on company location and size as well!

Here is what you can take away from this guide to know more about machine learning engineer salaries:

  • Machine learning involves software engineering, handling huge data sets, and developing products and features
  • Since it involves creating AI tools, ML engineer salary is much higher than that of data scientists and lower than AI engineers
  • Machine learning engineer salary can change according to factors such as years of experience and machine learning skills that you possess
  • Popular companies such as Google, Apple, Facebook, etc. offer the highest machine learning salary among most companies

Keep these facts in mind to hone your skills and expertise to increase your rewards and raise your machine learning engineer salary!

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