Embedded Systems Developer

Last Updated:
September 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

An Embedded Systems Developer job description involves designing and developing systems that can function with restricted resources. They work in the software engineering industry, where they develop software and hardware for embedded systems. As an Embedded Systems Developer, you will be responsible for designing and testing software, developing new systems, and ensuring that they are compatible with various devices. You will also be responsible for managing and documenting the code, maintaining hardware and software, testing systems, and troubleshooting when necessary. You will need to have strong programming skills in languages like C or C++, experience in debugging and testing, a solid understanding of hardware and software architecture, and excellent communication and teamwork skills. If you're interested in this field, an Embedded Systems Developer job may be perfect for you.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Develop and maintain embedded software systems for specialized hardware devices.
  • Write code in programming languages such as C, C++, Java, and Python.
  • Design and implement firmware for microcontrollers and other embedded systems.
  • Debug and troubleshoot software, hardware, and electrical problems that arise during development.
  • Collaborate with hardware engineers to ensure compatibility between software and hardware components.
  • Create documentation for software design, test plans, and user manuals.
  • Stay up-to-date with emerging trends in embedded systems technology and programming languages.
  • Optimize software for resource-constrained systems, such as those with limited memory or processing power.
  • Participate in code reviews and provide feedback to other developers.
  • Test and validate systems to ensure they meet functional and performance requirements.

Experience and Education Requirements

To be an Embedded Systems Developer in Software Engineering, you typically need a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or a related field. But sometimes, employers might consider hands-on experience with software development, particularly with embedded systems. 

If you're a fresh graduate, internships and cooperative education programs give you the opportunity to gain practical experience and build relevant skills. A strong understanding of programming languages such as C and low-level system software fundamentals is essential in this field. Good communication and problem-solving abilities are also helpful. 

Employers may also require you to have experience with specific tools, such as Real-Time Operating Systems (RTOS) or debugging tools. Knowledge of development processes, like Agile or the Waterfall model, is also beneficial. The ideal candidate should possess a blend of technical and soft skills to be effective in this role.

Salary Range

An Embedded Systems Developer is a software engineer who specializes in designing and developing embedded systems software. In the United States, the average salary range for this position is between $70,000 and $130,000 per year, depending on experience, qualifications, and location. According to Glassdoor, the national average salary for Embedded Systems Developers is $86,083 per year. In other countries, such as Canada and the United Kingdom, the average annual salary range for this position is similar to the US, ranging from CAD $64,000 to CAD $105,000 and from £30,000 to £70,000 in the UK. 


  • Glassdoor: https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/embedded-systems-developer-salary-SRCH_KO0,27.htm
  • Payscale: https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=EmbeddedSystemsDeveloper/Salary
  • Indeed: https://www.indeed.com/salaries/Embedded-Software-Engineer-Salaries,-Embedded-System-Developer-Salaries

Career Outlook

As technology continues to evolve, the career outlook for an Embedded Systems Developer is expected to grow significantly over the next 5 years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of software developers is projected to grow 22 percent from 2019 to 2029, so there will be ample opportunities for software engineers in general, including Embedded Systems Developers.

With the growing demand for smart devices and the Internet of Things (IoT), Embedded Systems Developers will be in high demand as they are the experts in developing and programming these types of systems. Additionally, the need for cybersecurity in these devices will create even more opportunities for these professionals.

In conclusion, if you are interested in pursuing a career as an Embedded Systems Developer, the future looks bright. With the rapid advancement of technology, the need for these professionals will continue to grow, and there will be plenty of opportunities for well-paid work in this field.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What is an Embedded Systems Developer?

A: An Embedded Systems Developer is a software engineer who specializes in designing and developing software for embedded systems, such as microcontrollers and other integrated systems.

Q: What kind of education do I need to become an Embedded Systems Developer?

A: Most employers require a bachelor's degree in computer science or electrical engineering. However, some employers may accept a degree in a related field, such as mathematics.

Q: What are some typical responsibilities of an Embedded Systems Developer?

A: Embedded Systems Developers typically design, code, test, and debug software for microcontroller-based systems. They may also be responsible for developing firmware, device drivers, and other low-level software.

Q: What kind of programming languages do Embedded Systems Developers use?

A: Embedded Systems Developers typically use a variety of programming languages, such as C, C++, and Assembly language. They may also use specialized programming languages, such as MATLAB and Simulink.

Q: What are some challenges that Embedded Systems Developers face?

A: Some challenges faced by Embedded Systems Developers include ensuring the reliability and safety of the software they develop, as well as optimizing the software to work on limited computing resources. They may also need to work with hardware designers to ensure seamless integration of the software and the hardware.

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