Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer Salary

A sizeable majority of Computer Numerically Controlled Programmers in the United States are men. In this role, average pay is around $21.92 per hour. Total cash compensation to Computer Numerically Controlled Programmers bottoms out near $35K and approaches $75K on the high end; the biggest paychecks include approximately $4K from bonuses and almost $7K from profit sharing. Geography and career length each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and a majority earn dental coverage. Respondents to the PayScale salary survey provided the data for this report.
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$38,498 - $80,358
(Median)
$38K
$56K
$80K
MEDIAN: $55,630
10%
50%
90%

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$15.10 - $29.46
(Median)
$15
$22
$29
MEDIAN: $21.00
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$27K$54K$81K
Salary
$38,498 - $80,358  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,921  
Profit Sharing
$966 - $7,149  
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).
)
$35,222 - $75,492  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 352
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$15$30$45
Hourly Rate
$15.10 - $29.46  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00  
Overtime
$22.08 - $43.66  
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$30K$60K$90K
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,921  
   
Profit Sharing
$966 - $7,149  
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).
)
$35,222 - $75,492  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 797
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Job Description for Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer

A computer numerically controlled (CNC) programmer programs the machines that cut, shape, and finish materials such as metals, plastics, or wood into usable components. The CNC programmer must study the drawings and blueprints of the components that need to be manufactured and determine which machines will be required, what they will need to do, and the order in which the work needs to be done. Often, CNC programmer are also asked to estimate how long the job will take.

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Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer Tasks

  • Analyze blueprints and job orders before programming and compare results with original specifications.
  • Sequence automatic machine operations and select cutting tools.
  • Program, test, and revise machine programming.
  • Tooling and design of machining, including electric and sand core molds, mills, and lathes.

Common Career Paths for Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer


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Moving into a Manufacturing Engineer position seems to be a popular career progression. Median pay for this job is $62K annually.

Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer


Overall, survey participants reported applying a fair number of skills to their work. Most notably, facility with CATIA, NX Unigraphics, and MASTERCAM are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 43 percent, 20 percent, and 8 percent, respectively. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Machine Programming, Manufacturing. For most people, competency in CAD/CAM indicates knowledge of Precision Machining.

Pay by Experience Level for Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer

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


For many Computer Numerically Controlled Programmers, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. Salaries of relatively inexperienced workers fall in the neighborhood of $41K, but folks who have racked up five to 10 years see a notably higher median of $52K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $56K in this role. In the end, the overall pattern seems to be that more experience generally corresponds to higher pay; a Computer Numerically Controlled Programmer with more than 20 years of experience can earn $60K on average.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $51,931

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

For Computer Numerically Controlled Programmers, busy Tulsa offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 29 percent above the national average. Computer Numerically Controlled Programmers will also find cushy salaries in Houston (+26 percent), Wichita (+17 percent), Chicago (+14 percent), and Seattle (+12 percent). Falling short of the national average by 16 percent, the area with the worst salaries is Fort Worth. Workers in Indianapolis and Grand Rapids earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (16 percent less and 7 percent less, respectively).

Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer Reviews

What is it like working as a Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer?

Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer in Geneva:
"Great Learning Experience."
Pros: It is definitely a great learning experience, but most of all I love what I do and there always seems to be obstacles and challenges for me to overcome. I am always up for a challenge but most importantly this position allows me challenge myself. I set goals and thrive to accomplish these goals each and every year.
Cons: What I like least about my job is the fact that I am not a part of the production meetings that are happening on a week to week basis. A lot of times I am not made aware of changes and upcoming production shortages until the timeline has reached a crucial point.

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Experience Affects Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer Salaries




National Average
$52,000


Skills That Affect Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) Programmer Salaries

CATIA
up arrow 43%

NX Unigraphics
up arrow 20%

MASTERCAM
up arrow 8%

CAD/CAM
up arrow 3%

Precision Machining
up arrow 3%

SolidWorks
up arrow 1%

CNC/NC
0%

National Average
$52,000

Computer Aided Drafting & Design (CADD)
up arrow 2%

Computer Aided Design (CAD)
up arrow 3%

Machine Programming, Manufacturing
up arrow 14%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 204 votes.

Gender

Female
2 %
Male
98 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1%
1-4 years
24%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
31%
20 years or more
26%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 83%
dental benefits
Dental: 62%
medical benefits
Vision: 43%
dental benefits
None: 14%
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