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Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter Salary

Computer Aided Design Drafters in the United States take home approximately $17.40 per hour on average. Total cash compensation to Computer Aided Design Drafters approaches anywhere from $28K on the lower end to $55K on the higher end; in exceptional cases, this can include more than $3K from bonuses and upwards of $5K from profit sharing. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Health benefits are not claimed by all — somewhere between a fifth and a fourth lack any form of coverage — but a strong majority have medical insurance, and slightly more than half have dental, too. Generally, women make up less than a third of all Computer Aided Design Drafters who answered the questionnnaire. Job satisfaction for Computer Aided Design Drafters is high. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.
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$29,761 - $58,077
(Median)
$30K
$41K
$58K
MEDIAN: $40,635
10%
50%
90%

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$12.36 - $24.72
(Median)
$12
$17
$25
MEDIAN: $17.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$20K$40K$60K
Salary
$29,761 - $58,077  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,580  
Profit Sharing
$202.26 - $4,902  
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).
)
$27,612 - $55,106  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 1 Apr 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 1,058
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$12.36 - $24.72  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $1.82  
Overtime
$17.65 - $36.00  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,580  
   
Profit Sharing
$202.26 - $4,902  
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).
)
$27,612 - $55,106  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 1 Apr 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 2,508

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Job Description for Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter

Computer aided design (CAD) drafters use computer aided design systems to created drawings for building construction or product creation, filling design drawings with codes and specifications for the design. CAD drafters work directly with the company needing the design, and drafters must be able to take directions and use them to deliver a high-quality design. Computer aided design drafters must be precise, have great verbal skills, be able to handle stress, be creative, be organized, and be able to meet deadlines. In addition, CAD drafters need to be able to show they can be trusted with the companies information, designs, and plans.

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Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter Tasks

  • Research and obtain standards and codes required by client to develop plans.
  • Review engineering drawings prior to the release.
  • Develop accurate layouts, assembly drawings and details.
  • Take direction from engineers and executives to research drawings, catalogs and sketches to develop detailed dimensioned AutoCAD drawings.

Common Career Paths for Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter


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Though some Computer Aided Design Drafters move into positions like Construction Project Manager (where the average salary is $70K), this progression is not the norm. Computer Aided Design Drafters most often move into positions as AutoCAD Designers or Senior Drafters; those groups report median salaries that are $6K higher and $9K higher, respectively.

Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter


Computer Aided Design Drafters seem to exploit a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Engineering Design, 3D Rendering, Design, and Computer Aided Design are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 6 percent. Skills that pay less than market rate include Autodesk Inventor. Most people experienced in Microsoft Office also know Microsoft Excel. Most people experienced in AutoCAD also know Computer Aided Drafting & Design (CADD), Microsoft Excel, and Computer Aided Design (CAD).

Pay by Experience Level for Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter

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


Computer Aided Design Drafters with more experience do not necessarily bring home bigger paychecks. In fact, experience in this field tends to impact compensation minimally. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $35K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $41K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Computer Aided Design Drafters see a median salary of $45K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Individuals who have achieved more than 20 years of experience don't seem to earn much more than people who have 10 to 20 years under their belts; the more senior group reports an average income of $50K.

Pay Difference by Location


Surpassing the national average by 20 percent, Computer Aided Design Drafters in Seattle receive some of the highest pay in the country. Computer Aided Design Drafters can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Denver (+15 percent), Atlanta (+13 percent), St. Louis (+11 percent), and Minneapolis (+10 percent). In Miami, salaries are 8 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Workers in Phoenix and Austin earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (5 percent less and 4 percent less, respectively).

Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter Reviews

What is it like working as a Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter?

Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter in Las Vegas:
"The Freedom."
Pros: My job is in a low stress environment. It is not difficult if you know what you're doing.
Cons: There is a steep learning curve. Must be extremely detail oriented.

Related Job Salaries

United States (change)

Experience Affects Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter Salaries




National Average
$39,000


Skills That Affect Computer Aided Design (CAD) Drafter Salaries


3D Rendering
up arrow 4%

Design
up arrow 4%

Computer Aided Drafting & Design (CADD)
up arrow 3%

Computer Aided Design (CAD)
up arrow 3%

Adobe Photoshop
up arrow 2%

Microsoft Office
up arrow 1%

AutoCAD
0%

SolidWorks
0%

National Average
$39,000

Microsoft Excel
up arrow 1%

Microsoft Word
up arrow 1%

AutoCAD Architecture
up arrow 1%

Autodesk Revit Architecture
up arrow 2%

AutoCAD Mechanical
up arrow 2%


Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 678 votes.

Gender

Female
21 %
Male
79 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
5%
1-4 years
37%
5-9 years
26%
10-19 years
21%
20 years or more
11%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 75% dental benefits Dental: 55%
vision benefits Vision: 40% employee benefits None: 23%