Chemist Salary

Average Chemists in the United States make around $52K per year. The income range spans the entire spectrum between $35K and $82K per year. Cash earnings for Chemists — which occasionally include more than $6K from bonuses and more than $9K from profit sharing — stretch from around $35K to approximately $82K. The most influential factor affecting pay for this group is the particular firm, though career length and geography have a (lesser) impact as well. A large number enjoy medical while a fair number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to the greater part. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Men make up the majority of Chemists (62 percent) survey respondents. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$36,863 - $82,868

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$14.50 - $27.69

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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
$36,863 - $82,868  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $6,033  
Profit Sharing
$5.30 - $8,726  
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).
)
$34,760 - $82,327  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 2,220
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
$14.50 - $27.69  
   
Overtime
$21.06 - $41.42  
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
$0.00 - $6,033  
   
Profit Sharing
$5.30 - $8,726  
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).
)
$34,760 - $82,327  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 704
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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

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

Common Career Paths for Chemist


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Though hard to find, Chemists sometimes become Senior Chemists. The role averages $75K per year. More commonly, Chemists become Analytical Chemists or Research Chemists.

Chemist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Chemist


PPG Industries, Inc., Sigma Aldrich Corp, Valspar Corporation, Ecolab, Inc., and Intertek are among the top companies that take on many Chemists. Valspar Corporation offers the best pay with a median salary of $73K, though salaries there don't seem that varied, bottoming out near $63K and maxing out at just $96K. Other leaders in compensation levels are BASF Corporation at $63K, Sherwin Williams Co. at $57K, and PPG Industries, Inc., where Chemists annually earn $54K.

Intertek, Sigma Aldrich Corp, and Ecolab, Inc. also rank near the bottom for pay, handing out $42K, $46K, and $52K-paychecks on average.

Popular Skills for Chemist


Chemists report using a diverse set of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Chemistry, Chemical Process Engineering, and Product Development are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 25 percent, 13 percent, and 7 percent, respectively. At the other end of the pay range are skills like GMP Compliance, Instrument Control, and HPLC. For most people, competency in Quality Assurance / Quality Control indicates knowledge of Research Analysis.

Pay by Experience Level for Chemist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience and income seem to be closely related; in general, the survey respondents who had worked for more years reported higher incomes. Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $45K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $56K. On average, Chemists make $63K following one to two decades on the job. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $74K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

Pay Difference by Location


Home to some of the best pay for Chemists, Boston offers exceptional salaries, 19 percent above the national average. Chemists will also find cushy salaries in New York (+18 percent), Indianapolis (+14 percent), Houston (+12 percent), and Cleveland (+10 percent). The smallest paychecks in the market, 17 percent south of the national average, can be found in Pittsburgh. Milwaukee and Los Angeles are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 10 percent lower and 5 percent lower, respectively.

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Experience Affects Chemist Salaries




National Average
$50,000


Skills That Affect Chemist Salaries

Chemistry
up arrow 25%

Chemical Process Engineering
up arrow 13%


Research Analysis
up arrow 4%

Technical Analysis
up arrow 2%

National Average
$50,000

Data Analysis
up arrow 1%

Quality Assurance / Quality Control
up arrow 3%

HPLC
up arrow 8%

Instrument Control
up arrow 9%

GMP Compliance
up arrow 15%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 423 votes.

Gender

Female
38 %
Male
62 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
46%
5-9 years
20%
10-19 years
14%
20 years or more
10%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 87% dental benefits Dental: 74%
vision benefits Vision: 59% employee benefits None: 12%
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