With between two-thirds and three-fourths of Mainframe Computer Operators in the United States reporting more than 10 years of experience in the field, this area is heavily weighted toward experienced professionals. Pay ranges from $31K to $72K per year and averages out to $49K annually. Making up 70 percent of those who took the survey, male Mainframe Computer Operators greatly outnumber their female counterparts. Unfortunately, some people in this line of work are without benefits — just under one in four lack coverage. On the flip side, a strong majority have medical insurance and a majority receive dental plans. Most Mainframe Computer Operators are fairly content with their jobs, and work satisfaction falls in line with the national average. The information for this rundown comes from respondents who completed PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$35,120 - $73,753
(Median)
$35K
$49K
$74K
MEDIAN: $49,237
10%
50%
90%

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$12.37 - $29.31
(Median)
$12
$21
$29
MEDIAN: $20
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$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$35,120 - $73,753  
   
Bonus
$3,500  
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).
)
$31,325 - $72,045  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 45
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$17$34$51
Hourly Rate
$12.37 - $29.31  
   
Overtime
$15.23 - $50.42  
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$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$3,500  
   
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).
)
$31,325 - $72,045  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 32
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Job Description for Computer Operator, Mainframe

The very first computers were monstrous machines which filled warehouses; today's mainframes are the most direct surviving descendants of machines like ENIAC and, though they are exponentially faster and more capable (and often composed of many small machines working in tandem), the basic principle remains the same: dedicate a vast amount of computational power toward specific ends. Mainframe computer operators are responsible for putting these machines to work to solve whatever problems, or perform whatever tasks, which require such massive hardware to accomplish.

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Computer Operator, Mainframe Tasks

  • Ensure the processes remain uninterrupted and the program jobs run as scheduled.
  • Oversee the computer mainframe and supporting system equipment.
  • Diagnoses and resolves system problems.

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Pay by Experience Level for Computer Operator, Mainframe

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


Salaries of relatively inexperienced workers fall in the neighborhood of $36K, but folks who have racked up five to 10 years see a notably higher median of $56K. Mainframe Computer Operators bring in $48K after working for 10 to 20 years. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $50K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

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Experience Affects Computer Operator, Mainframe Salaries

Mid-Career
up arrow 18%

Late-Career
up arrow 4%

Experienced
up arrow 1%

National Average
$48,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 25%

Job Satisfaction

Satisfied
Rated 3 out of 5
based on 14 votes.

Gender

Female
30 %
Male
70 %

Years of Experience

1-4 years
17%
5-9 years
10%
10-19 years
34%
20 years or more
39%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 74%
dental benefits
Dental: 64%
medical benefits
Vision: 53%
dental benefits
None: 23%
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