Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Salary

Median pay for Clinical Research Associates in the United States is around $62K annually. Total incomes of Clinical Research Associates incorporate potential for, in a few cases, more than $10K from bonuses and close to $5K from profit sharing; these performance components cause packages to range between $39K and $92K. The most influential factor affecting pay for this group is the particular firm, though tenure and geography have a (lesser) impact as well. For the most part, Clinical Research Associates enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. Most Clinical Research Associates survey respondents are women (79 percent). Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Respondents to the PayScale salary survey provided the data for this report.

$41,614 - $89,987
$42K
$62K
$90K
MEDIAN: $61,659
10%
50%
90%

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$14.69 - $42.28
$15
$23
$42
MEDIAN: $22.52
10%
50%
90%

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$0$91K
Salary $41,614 - $89,987
Bonus $5.93 - $9,787
Profit Sharing $290.87 - $5,152
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).
)
$39,288 - $91,532
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 11 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 1,101
Hourly Data $0$55
Hourly Rate $14.69 - $42.28
Overtime $8.40 - $55.64
Annual Data $0$91K
Bonus $5.93 - $9,787
Profit Sharing $290.87 - $5,152
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).
)
$39,288 - $91,532
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 11 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 258

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)

Clinical research associates (CRA) are responsible for assisting in the clinical research process, providing advanced technical expertise in steps such as handling supplies, ordering tests, and collecting results, presenting specific research information to the public, and a variety of administrative tasks. CRAs must follow strict privacy and safety regulations to prevent problems with subjects and ethical concerns; they must also be organized and pay close attention to detail when conducting research using investigative methods in clinical or healthcare settings.

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Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Tasks

  • Conduct research to develop methodologies, instrumentation and procedures for medical application, analyzing data and presenting findings.
  • Prepare and analyze organ, tissue and cell samples to identify toxicity, bacteria, or microorganisms, or to study cell structure.
  • Plan and direct studies to investigate human or animal disease, preventive methods, and treatments for disease.
  • Investigate cause, progress, life cycle, or mode of transmission of diseases or parasites.
  • Evaluate effects of drugs, gases, pesticides, parasites, and microorganisms at various levels.

Common Career Paths for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)


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For Clinical Research Associates, progressing to a Clinical Trial Manager role may result in a significant raise. On average, a Clinical Trial Manager can earn $97K annually. Career advancement for the typical Clinical Research Associate often leads to becoming a Senior Clinical Research Associate or a Clinical Project Manager; median salaries in these positions are $30K higher and $26K higher, respectively.

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)


Well-known firms with a reputation for hiring numerous Clinical Research Associates include Medpace, Inc., Pharmaceutical Product Development (PPD), Inc, PRA International, Covance, Inc, and Icon Clinical Research Inc. The biggest paychecks can be found at Gilead Sciences, Inc. — the median salary there is $84K. Clinical Research Associates will also find cushy salaries at St. Jude Medical, Inc. (+$79K), Inventiv Health (+$76K), and Parexel (+$76K).

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center lags the field greatly in terms of pay, offering a median salary less than half of the top paying company's rate ($36K). Medpace, Inc., Kaiser Permanente, and Parexel International Corp also rank near the bottom for pay, handing out $51K, $52K, and $58K-paychecks on average.

Popular Skills for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)


Survey results suggest that Clinical Research Associates use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, facility with monitoring, Oncology, and Clinical Research are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 39 percent, 10 percent, and 4 percent, respectively. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Data Analysis. Those proficient in Regulatory Compliance are, more often than not, also skilled in Project Management and Data Analysis. Those proficient in Clinical Research are, more often than not, also skilled in Data Analysis and Project Management.

Pay by Experience Level for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)

Pay by Experience for a Clinical Research Associate (CRA) has a positive trend. An entry-level Clinical Research Associate (CRA) with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $59,000 based on 971 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Clinical Research Associate (CRA) with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $70,000 based on 303 salaries. An experienced Clinical Research Associate (CRA) which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $79,000 based on 140 salaries. A Clinical Research Associate (CRA) with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $84,000 based on 32 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $60,964

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

With a pay rate for Clinical Research Associates that is 23 percent greater than the national average, San Francisco offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Clinical Research Associates can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Minneapolis (+22 percent), New York (+10 percent), Atlanta (+9 percent), and Los Angeles (+9 percent). In Cincinnati, salaries are 16 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Below-median salaries also turn up in Houston and Philadelphia (7 percent lower and 6 percent lower, respectively).

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Clinical Research Associate (CRA)?

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) in College Station:
Pros: Type of work. Environment. Use critical thinking. Social skills.
Cons: Stress level, compensation for amount of work.

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) in Lincoln:
"CRA for a Staffing Agency."
Pros: I got to work with good people, for and with companies with a strong commitment to ethical behavior.
Cons: I was underpaid and under-appreciated. Because I was working for a staffing agency, I was basically treated as a second-class citizen at the client site.

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) in Minneapolis:
"Poor culture, office is crammed, top-level unqualified."
Pros: The Clinical position is located in Arden Hills, MN. The supervising manager is located in NC. There is a lot of latitude in performing your job as this is definitely one where micro-managing is not conducive. However, if you require a lot of guidance, this position would not be a good fit. The supervising manager expects the staff to be self-starters and if they don't deliver, many contractors have lost their position this way. Clinical research efforts are mainly a marketing vehicle to stimulate new sales or trials for the product. This company is easily accessible from my home. I am able to compensate some personal time as a result of my work travel. I have been deliberate in voicing what I want and the direction of my career. I've explained that I want to participate on core teams and work on project management or even compliance tasks. No change in my responsibilities. No considerations given. Many higher-ups are very exclusive and only travel together to bond.
Cons: The company culture is lacking. The management does not seem interested in developing their current talent. Either this is the case, or they are not invested in the long term future as the nature of the company has been to "sell the company in 3-5 years" since establishing MN location on 2009. Management has been quoted as saying, "what we do next after this" to lead one to believe the company is temporary. Top level managers (VPs) remotely manage their departments, currently located in the Arden Hills office, as they have consistently stated they will not move to Minnesota. The result is the staff are left to their own devices usually to tackle highest priorities for each unfinished project and then jump to another unfinished project tackling only the highest priority to address pressing deadlines. The culture is slow to embrace change. There are many individuals who say that "that's how we've always done things" or "that was how we used to do it when X used to work here."

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)

Gender

Female
79 %
Male
21 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 142 votes.
Less than 1 year
12%
1-4 years
56%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
10%
20 years or more
3%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Salaries

▲38%

▲30%

▲14%

National Average
$61,000

▼3%

Skills That Affect Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Salaries

monitoring
▲39%

▲10%



Project Management
▲1%

National Average
$61,000



Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 142 votes.

Gender

Female
79 %
Male
21 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
12%
1-4 years
56%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
10%
20 years or more
3%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 88%
dental benefits
Dental: 78%
vision benefits
Vision: 69%
no benefits
None: 11%
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