Clinical Research Associate (CRA) Salary
Clinical Research Associates in the United States pull down an average of $62K annually. Cash earnings for Clinical Research Associates — which occasionally include more than $10K from bonuses and more than $5K from profit sharing — stretch from around $39K to approximately $92K. This group's pay is mainly influenced by the company, followed by tenure and geography. Most enjoy medical while a strong majority get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a majority. Men are in the minority of survey respondents, with female Clinical Research Associates making up 78 percent. Work is enjoyable for Clinical Research Associates, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
|Salary||$41,758 - $90,013|
|Bonus||$6.00 - $9,784|
|Profit Sharing||$293.61 - $5,106|
|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).)
|$39,420 - $91,891|
|Hourly Rate||$14.59 - $45.42|
|Overtime||$7.35 - $63.06|
|Bonus||$6.00 - $9,784|
|Profit Sharing||$293.61 - $5,106|
|Total Pay (||$39,420 - $91,891|
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.Read More...
Excellent communication skills are important in this position in order to develop strong business relationships, and multitasking skills are important to complete paperwork and keep research records for future reference. They may work in teams to reach goals under strict deadlines, but should also work well on their own with minimal supervision. CRAs must be proficient with computers to log research information and fill out applications, documents, and other required data, as well as Microsoft Office applications to write detailed reports based on their findings. They also use electronic communication to gather information.
Clinical research associates work in offices and laboratory environments depending on the employer, and should be able to stand on their feet for long periods of time. They must be highly skilled in research and how to use research tools and equipment, as well as provide maintenance and cleaning functions when not in use. A high school diploma is required for this position, and prior work experience in a clinical research capacity is highly beneficial. Research certifications are also helpful.
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)
Clinical Research Associates may progress into high-paying roles like Clinical Trial Manager, where median compensation is $97K annually. Clinical Research Associates moving up in their careers tend to step into positions as Senior Clinical Research Associates or Clinical Project Managers. The median paychecks in those roles are $30K higher and $26K higher, respectively.
Popular Employer Salaries for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)
Dominating the field, Medpace, Inc., Pharmaceutical Product Development (PPD), Inc, PRA International, Covance, Inc, and Icon Clinical Research Inc are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Clinical Research Associates. The biggest paychecks can be found at Gilead Sciences, Inc. — the median salary there is $84K. Soaring salaries can also be found at St. Jude Medical, Inc., Inventiv Health, and Parexel, where earnings of $79K, $76K, or $76K are standard for Clinical Research Associates.
Earnings fall especially short at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where the median salary of $36K is the lowest in the field, less than half of the top paying company's rate. Also sliding in at the lower end of the scale are Medpace, Inc. ($51K), Kaiser Permanente ($52K), and Parexel International Corp ($58K).
Popular Skills for Clinical Research Associate (CRA)
Overall, survey participants reported applying a fair number of skills to their work. Most notably, facility with monitoring, Oncology, and Clinical Research are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 38 percent, 10 percent, and 3 percent, respectively. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Data Analysis. People who know Regulatory Compliance usually also know Project Management and Data Analysis. For most people, competency in Clinical Research indicates knowledge of 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
For Clinical Research Associates, San Francisco provides a pay rate that is 22 percent greater than the national average. Clinical Research Associates can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Minneapolis (+21 percent), New York (+9 percent), Atlanta (+8 percent), and Los Angeles (+8 percent). Cincinnati ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 16 percent below the national average. Houston and Philadelphia are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries tend to be 7 percent less than the median.
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