• PTP Chicago

Popular Software Engineer Jobs

Software engineering is one of the most popular domains to study these days, and software engineering jobs are available in almost every industry imaginable. Be it manufacturing, healthcare, retail, entertainment, defense, transportation, or anything else, everybody employs software engineers in some capacity or the other.

Let's look at some of the most popular, and well-paying, software engineer jobs available today.

Topics covered:

  • What does a software engineer do?

  • 5 Most popular software engineer jobs

  • AR/VR engineer

  • Gaming engineer

  • Computer vision engineer

  • Search engineer

  • ML engineer

What does a software engineer do?

A software engineer uses computer science to develop software. This software is used in computers, on the internet, mobile phones, apps, games, robots, operating systems, movies, and much more besides. Because software has such widespread use, software engineers are employed in many different jobs and industries.

5 Most Popular Software Engineer Jobs

AR/VR engineer

Augmented Reality (AR) is software that can use computer-generated graphics and programs to alter or enhance real-world elements. For example, using Amazon’s Modiface app to trial make-up before purchase. Virtual Reality (VR) is software that uses computer technology to allow users to interact with a virtual world. For example, Sony’s VR Goggles allow you to immerse yourself in the world of a video game, by visually locating you inside the game’s world.

AR/VR engineers help design and build the programs that AR and VR run on. They usually have a degree in computer science, as well as qualifications in programming languages and 3D design. Their primary duties will involve designing, analyzing, debugging, and developing, AR and VR software. An AR/VR engineer can expect to earn around $140,000 per annum in the U.S.

Gaming engineer

Gaming engineers are software developers who specialize in designing and programming video games. These video games are played on computers, consoles, tablets, and mobile phones. The gaming industry is one of the wealthiest and fastest-growing entertainment businesses, bigger even than Hollywood. It was reported that global gaming revenue reached a value of $167 billion in 2020.

As a result, gaming engineers are heavily in demand. To be a gaming engineer, you would need a degree in computer science or a related field, in-depth knowledge of programming languages as well as data modeling, problem-solving, and computational mathematics. Due to the high demand and the growing industry size, a gaming engineer can expect to earn anywhere between $110,000 to $160,000 per annum.

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Computer vision engineer

Computer vision relates to a computer’s ability to ‘see’ and analyze images. Through this analysis, they can gather information and make assumptions, for example about the spatial characteristics of objects in the image. Computer vision technology is used in defense, medicine, transportation, manufacturing, etc.

A computer vision engineer uses large amounts of data and computer vision research to solve real-world issues. They are required to work with image recognition, machine learning, and segmentation systems. To become a computer vision engineer you would be required to hold a Master’s degree in computer engineering, with a specialization in computer vision research. The median salary for a computer vision engineer in the U.S is around $122,000 per annum.

Network Security engineer

In an increasingly interconnected world, which operates online as much as offline, organizations are increasingly having to protect their systems and data from cybersecurity threats. Network security engineers create security solutions for organizations and perform a number of functions for them such as carrying out risk assessments, identifying vulnerabilities in the network, creating firewalls, and enhancing existing security features. Security engineers are also expected to document threats and fix technical issues.

To become a network security engineer you need, in addition to the staple computer science degree, certain companies will also expect you to have security certifications such as CISSP or CISM. Additionally, depending on your interest, you could also complete courses on cybersecurity for mobile hacking, forensic security, cyber law, compliance, etc. The average salary for a new entrant to the market is currently around $70,000.

Machine Learning engineer

Machine learning (ML) is a type of artificial intelligence programming that uses data to learn and perform functions accurately, without continued human input. ML is used in recommender systems, search engines, speech-to-text converters, computer games, medical diagnosis, and predictive analysis. An ML engineer builds and designs these programs. ML engineer was ranked the highest paying job in the U.S in 2019, by Indeed.com.

An ML engineer will be expected to have a Ph.D. or, at the very least, a post-graduate degree in a relevant discipline. Additionally, they will have an advanced understanding of programming languages like Java, C++, and Python. The average salary for an ML engineer is upwards of $140,000 per annum in the U.S. ML engineers also work on a freelance basis and can ask upwards of $200 per hour, especially if they have a Ph.D.


Software engineering jobs have become a premium in the last few decades. The world has witnessed exponential growth in the IT and computer science industry, and with this growth, the demand for software engineers has also grown exponentially. The job market for software design and development is so large that getting qualified in software engineering will land you a good job and a steady income no matter where you live.

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About the Company:

Peterson Technology Partners (PTP) has been Chicago's premier Information Technology (IT) staffing, consulting, and recruiting firm for over 22+ years. Named after Chicago's historic Peterson Avenue, PTP has built its reputation by developing lasting relationships, leading digital transformation, and inspiring technical innovation throughout Chicagoland.

Based in Park Ridge, IL, PTP's 250+ employees have a narrow focus on a single market (Chicago) and expertise in 4 innovative technical areas;

  • Cybersecurity

  • Artificial Intelligence

  • Data Science

  • Cloud & DevOps

PTP exists to ensure that all of our partners (clients and candidates alike) make the best hiring and career decisions.

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