May 23, 2024
min read

10 Highest Paying Programming Languages 2024

Eli McGarvie

Pay’s not everything, but it does count for something. While the tech industry is doing a great job of promoting healthy work-life balance and company culture, some of us still care about the old-fashioned pay cheque. Salary not only indicates our professional value, but also the potential value we can provide being a multi-skilled programmer. 

While salary averages don’t always show the whole picture, they can be an interesting snapshot for comparison within specific datasets. It’s a good starting point for further research. In this article, we’ll look at the top ten highest paying programming languages based on Stack Overflow’s 2023 Developer Survey

What is the highest paying coding language?

The highest paying coding language is Zig, with an average salary of $103,611 USD. This data is from the latest Stack Overflow Survey (2023). Unfortunately, there is no salary data based on location or experience, so it’s difficult to say where the majority of Zig developers are working and what experience they have. 

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What are the other top paying programming languages?

While this survey data is a great indicator of what developers are being paid in the industry, it’s important to keep in mind that salary is subject to a number of different factor, including experience, market conditions, and location. These are global averages, Indian salaries are on the low end and US salaries are on the high end – average salaries generally skew higher towards mid-senior developer pay (outside the US market). If you’re interested in drilling down the future, we suggest you first have a look at the local salary and then factor in your years of experience. 

Here is a snapshot of the top paying languages, and keep reading for a more comprehensive breakdown: 

Programming Language Salary
Zig $103,611
Erlang $99,492
F# $99,311
Ruby $98,522
Clojure $96,381
Elixir $96,381
LISP $96,381
Scala $96,381
Perl $94,540
Go $92,760

1. Zig

Avg. Salary: $103,611

Zig has quickly climbed to the top of the Stack Overflow salary rankings and become the highest-paid programming language in 2023. It was developed as a simple substitute for C, which emphasizes dependability and simplicity for system-level programming. It improves readability and maintainability of the code, which is very helpful for developers developing intricate, performance-critical applications.

Mostly, zig is utilized in low-level systems development. Its appealing because it lessens the headaches typically connected with changing legacy code and facilitates the switch from C. Its ascent to the top of the wage list suggests a robust market need for its useful advantages in fields like embedded systems and other high-performance software requirements.

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2. Erlang

Avg. Salary: $99,492

At number two we have Erlang. Erlang is a programming language that was designed to support the development of concurrent, distributed, and fault-tolerant systems. Erlang developers are software developers who specialise in using Erlang to build applications and systems.

Unfortunately, Erlang, despite its high average salary, is one of those programming languages that developers dread (hate) using. According to StackOverflow, around 45% of developers using Erlang said they dreaded using the language. That’s not great feedback... It seems like there are some better alternatives based on criticisms of the language, but this list isn’t about “the most loved programming languages.” 

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3. F#

Avg. Salary: $99,311

Third-place goes to F#, an efficient, expressive, and succinct programming language built on the functional programming paradigm. Typically proficient in functional programming, F# developers may also be conversant with other widely used technologies and frameworks, such the Visual Studio development environment and the.NET framework.

Among the many applications that are frequently developed with F# are online applications, data science and machine learning systems, and financial applications. Because it facilitates effective and expressive data manipulation and analysis, it is especially well-suited for jobs that require working with huge volumes of data.

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4. Ruby 

Avg. Salary: $98,522

Ruby is an object-oriented programming language well renowned for its simple and understandable syntax. It was developed in Japan in the middle of the 1990s, and both novices and seasoned developers have come to love it for its simplicity of use.

Online development often uses Ruby, mostly because of the Ruby on Rails framework, which enables developers to create and publish online applications fast. Because Ruby can script so well, it is also helpful for scientific computing and data processing outside of web development. Its usefulness is disputed, though, as additional languages become more prominent in 2024. Ruby is nevertheless a popular programming language and one of the highest paid because of its easy learning curve, vibrant community, and continuous release of new tools.

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5. Clojure

Avg. Salary: $96,381

In the most recent StackOverflow survey, Clojure is now ranked fifth highest-paying programming language, down from first place the previous year. Its ongoing scarcity among developers still adds to its higher pay because fewer people are proficient in it.

Strong LISP and functional programming abilities are usually required of Clojure developers, who also excel at concurrency and immutable data. Large enterprises trying to improve the effectiveness and dependability of their software systems will find Clojure especially useful because of these features.

Additionally, Clojure developers can work on a variety of platforms because they are frequently skilled with technologies like the Java Virtual Machine (JVM). Along with Hadoop for large data processing, they also work with Apache Kafka for real-time data stream. Clojure's popularity is somewhat constrained despite its advantages by the difficulty of convincing people of its worth and deciphering its intricate error signals.

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6. Elixir

Avg. Salary: $96,381

Next is Elixir,a programming language built on the Erlang VM and known for its expressiveness and robust concurrency features. Because it excels at developing scalable and distributed systems, real-time applications, telephony, and distributed databases find it perfect.

Elixir developers are adept in functional programming and often familiar with frameworks like Phoenix, which offers speed and concurrency similar to Ruby on Rails, and the OTP platform for robust application development.

Projects requiring managing several activities at once, such real-time web development and telecommunications systems managing many connections, find Elixir especially helpful. In critical uptime environments like financial services, its capacity to make hot code upgrades — changing the system without downtime — is also a big advantage.

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Avg. Salary: $96,381

The effectiveness of the high-level programming language LISP in data analysis, symbolic computing, and artificial intelligence is well known. Functional programming is a skill that LISP programmers frequently excel at and which helps them to manage difficult computational problems.

Application areas for LISP are many and include everything from financial modeling to web programming. Important technologies used in conjunction with LISP are the object-oriented Common Lisp Object System (CLOS) and the performance- and robustness-praised SBCL (Steel Bank Common Lisp) version. LISP's flexibility and data handling efficiency make it still useful, particularly in domains that call for complex data processing and analysis. The developer community maintains its values to be useful for next technological advancements, especially in fields where machine learning and artificial intelligence rule.

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8. Scala

Avg. Salary: $96,381

Operating on the JVM, Scala blends aspects of functional and object-oriented programming. It is well regarded for being succinct and powerful, particularly helpful to developers using the Akka framework to create concurrent applications or Apache Spark for big data.

Web platforms, financial systems, and disciplines like data science and machine learning — where effectively managing huge data sets is essential — are among the many projects for which developers employ Scala. Learning this programming language is seen practical by the developer community since Scala 3 enhances the language's capability and usability. It gets you ready for jobs in big data and teaches you difficult programming concepts that are useful in a lot of IT careers. For someone interested in high-performance computing in particular, picking up Scala could be a wise professional decision.

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9. Perl

Avg. Salary: $94,540

Originally developed in 1987 as a UNIX scripting language, Perl has undergone tremendous change while still remaining relevant today. Strong text processing skills aside, Perl shines at system setup and logfile analysis. Its utility in system administration is increased by the smooth integration with UNIX utilities. 

Perl's vast library network through the Comprehensive Perl Archive Network (CPAN) supports rapid development and deployment, especially in web development and database interaction. Currently, a strong testing culture and ongoing community support keep Perl a viable option for programmers, especially for its effectiveness in managing intricate text processing and UNIX system integration.

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10. Go

Avg. Salary: $92,760

Google created Go, also called Golang, an open-source programming language with the goal of being succinct, expressive, and effective. Go is statically typed and is best used to create online apps, cloud and networking services. Its syntax is influenced by Python's simplicity and productivity and C's. Fast startup times and little runtime overhead — which do away with the requirement for a virtual machine — make it especially well-suited for developing microservices.

Originally presented in 2007 and made available as an open-source project in 2009, Go has been developing and, in order to keep current, added features such generics in 2022. Among its best qualities is its capacity for effective concurrent programming, which is backed by goroutines, which are lightweight processes, and a strong package ecosystem for dependency management. For developers trying to effectively handle data-intensive and high-performance applications in a contemporary computing environment, its simplicity and potent concurrency features make it a good option.

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Find a Programming Job!

While these languages offer a higher average salary than your more common languages, they don’t all receive the best feedback. Unfortunately, developers try to steer clear of these languages, which is a positive thing if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty!  

Anyway, that covers the highest-paying programming languages of 2024! Whether you are skilled in Zig, Erlang, F#, or any other language, hundreds of European companies are looking for developers like you. Create a profile on WeAreDevelopers and let companies apply to you!  

10 Highest Paying Programming Languages 2024

May 23, 2024
min read

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