Sales engineers: technical expertise plus people skills

September 18, 2001

Median annual earnings (including commissions) of sales engineers were $54,360 in 1999.

Annual earnings of sales engineers, 1999
[Chart data—TXT]

The middle 50 percent of sales engineers earned between $41,500 and $77,370 a year. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $31,520 a year and the highest 10 percent earned more than $96,640.

Sales engineers meld the features of two very different occupations, using their technical skills and problem-solving abilities as well as their enjoyment of working with people. They often work with both the customer and the production or engineering departments of their companies to help design or modify products and services to suit the customer's needs. Sales engineers are sometimes called manufacturers' agents, sales representatives, or technical sales support workers.

In addition to their typical benefits such as health insurance and vacation pay, most sales engineers are reimbursed for business expenses. These include transportation, meals, hotels, and customer entertainment; many sales engineers also enjoy personal use of a company car and earn frequent-flyer mileage.

These data are a product of the Occupational Employment Statistics program. For further information see "Sales Engineers," by Andrew J Nelson, Occupational Outlook Quarterly, Fall 2001. Note about the chart: deciles divide the dataset into 10 equal-size groups and quartiles divide the dataset into 4 equal-size groups.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Sales engineers: technical expertise plus people skills on the Internet at (visited September 25, 2016).


Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics

  • A look at healthcare spending, employment, pay, benefits, and prices
    As one of the largest U.S. industries, healthcare is steadily growing to meet the needs of an increasing population with an increasing life expectancy. This Spotlight looks at how much people spend on healthcare, current and projected employment in the industry, employer-provided healthcare benefits, healthcare prices, and pay for workers in healthcare occupations.

  • Employment and Wages in Healthcare Occupations
    Healthcare occupations are a significant percentage of U.S. employment. Some of the largest and highest paying occupations are in healthcare. This Spotlight examines employment and wages for healthcare occupations.

  • Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
    Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.