Chemist Salary

Median pay for Chemists in the United States is around $54K annually. Total cash compensation to Chemists varies from $35K to $82K; higher pay grades include potential for bonuses and profit sharing as high as $7K each. This group's pay is mainly influenced by the particular firm, followed by experience level and location. Chemists who participated in the survey are largely men, dominating at 64 percent. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Job satisfaction for Chemists is high.

$38,384 - $83,093
$38K
$54K
$83K
MEDIAN: $53,612
10%
50%
90%

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$14.52 - $27.00
$15
$19
$27
MEDIAN: $19.19
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$28K$56K$84K
Salary
$38,384 - $83,093  
   
Bonus
$192.29 - $7,485  
Profit Sharing
$0.00 - $7,341  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$34,787 - $81,808  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 1,838
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$14$28$42
Hourly Rate
$14.52 - $27.00  
   
Overtime
$20.39 - $41.47  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$28K$56K$84K
Bonus
$192.29 - $7,485  
   
Profit Sharing
$0.00 - $7,341  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$34,787 - $81,808  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 645

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Chemist

Chemists most often work in a lab setting of some sort. They maintain, troubleshoot, and use various instruments, equipment, and software tools utilized for chemical analysis and processing. Analytical techniques used by chemists include high-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC), gas chromatography (GC), and titration techniques. Strong data interpretation and analytical skills are required to be a chemist, as often times chemists are responsible for interpreting and analyzing data and equipment logs from other laboratory members. He or she needs to accurately report and track ingredient yields, quality measures, and occasionally microbiological results in addition to other key data sets. When necessary, the chemist must show an aptitude for experimental design. Additionally, chemists collect and document quality assurance test data, including testing formulations, substrates, and reagents. Chemists also must be very attentive to detail, especially since certain analytical tasks may be completely ruined with the slightest error.

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Chemist Tasks

  • Collect and document quality assurance test data, including testing formulations, substrates and reagents.
  • Interpret and analyze data and equipment logs from other laboratory members.
  • Maintain, troubleshoot, and use instruments, equipment and software tools.

Common Career Paths for Chemist


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While Chemists rarely become Senior Chemists, the job pays $75K per year on average. A more common career path for Chemists is stepping into the role of Analytical Chemist or Research Chemist.

Chemist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Chemist


Chemists fill the offices of leading firms PPG Industries, Inc., Valspar Corporation, Ecolab, Inc., Sigma Aldrich Corp, and Advanced Testing Laboratory. Valspar Corporation pays the most with a median salary of $73K, though there is little variation overall ($63K to $96K). Other leaders in compensation levels are Sherwin Williams Co. at $63K, PPG Industries, Inc. at $57K, and Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc., where Chemists annually earn $57K.

AAIPharma, Intertek and Clean Harbors, Inc are three other employers with a reputation for below-average pay, showing salaries around $38K, $41K, and $43K.

Popular Skills for Chemist


Chemists report using a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Chemistry, Project Management, and Troubleshooting are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 38 percent, 28 percent, and 25 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include GMP Compliance. For most people, competency in Quality Assurance / Quality Control indicates knowledge of Research Analysis and Product Development.

Pay by Experience Level for Chemist

Pay by Experience for a Chemist has a positive trend. An entry-level Chemist with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $47,000 based on 1,722 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Chemist with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $57,000 based on 577 salaries. An experienced Chemist which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $66,000 based on 369 salaries. A Chemist with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $76,000 based on 213 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $51,111

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Chemists will find that Cleveland offers an impressive pay rate, one which exceeds the national average by 14 percent. Chemists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Boston (+12 percent), New York (+10 percent), Philadelphia (+10 percent), and Houston (+9 percent). Milwaukee is the lowest-paying area, 13 percent south of the national average. Seattle and San Diego are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 11 percent lower and 10 percent lower, respectively.

Chemist Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Chemist?

Chemist in York:
Pros: It gave me a sense of independence and allowed me to come up with my own ideas towards improving our product.
Cons: Sometimes there is a lull in the amount of work we have to accomplish, and there was little experience with understanding how the product was made for some time.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Chemist

Gender

Female
36 %
Male
64 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 296 votes.
Less than 1 year
12%
1-4 years
48%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
12%
20 years or more
9%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Chemist Salaries

▲49%

▲28%

▲11%

National Average
$51,000

▼8%

Skills That Affect Chemist Salaries

▲38%


Troubleshooting
▲25%


Technical Writing
▲19%

Chemist
▲17%



Formulation
▲5%



HPLC
▲2%

National Average
$51,000




Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 296 votes.

Gender

Female
36 %
Male
64 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
12%
1-4 years
48%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
12%
20 years or more
9%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 86%
dental benefits
Dental: 72%
vision benefits
Vision: 59%
no benefits
None: 13%
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