Direct Support Professional Salary (United States)

Salaries for Direct Support Professionals in the United States sit in the ballpark of $10.04 per hour. The pay spectrum stretches from $8.36 per hour to $13.32. Residency is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by tenure. While 38 percent report receiving no health benefits, 58 percent do receive medical coverage, and more than half have dental, as well. Though the majority of Direct Support Professionals do not report high levels of job satisfaction, most are moderately content with their role. This synopsis is derived from the responses of individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
Direct Support Professional Salary (?
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.
)
$18,580 - $32,164
(Median)
19K
25K
29K
32K
MEDIAN: $24,570
10%
50%
75%
90%
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Direct Support Professional Salary (?
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.
)
$8.36 - $13.32
(Median)
8
12
13
MEDIAN: $10
10%
75%
90%
Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

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$11K$22K$33K
Salary
$18,580 - $32,164  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $726  
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).
)
$17,877 - $29,846  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 59
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$7$14$21
Hourly Rate
$8.36 - $13.32  
   
Overtime
$11.37 - $18.96  
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$14K$28K$42K
Bonus
$0.00 - $726  
   
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).
)
$17,877 - $29,846  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 660
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Job Description for Direct Support Professional

Direct support professionals perform a number of tasks to aid people with disabilities, providing encouragement and instructions on specific tasks the individuals struggle with due to their disabilities. Most direct support professionals are expected to document their interactions with clients - as well as any changes they notice - so the care team may learn and develop strategies. Often, they communicate with external parties on issues related to the client's care. For example, some clients may be unable to talk on the phone; direct support professionals may help provide solutions for those clients and work with caretakers and loved ones as necessary.
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Direct Support Professional Tasks
  • Check patients' pulse, temperature and respiration.
  • Provide patients with help moving in and out of beds, baths, wheelchairs or automobiles, and with dressing and grooming.
  • Maintain records of patient care, progress, or problems to report and discuss observations with supervisor or case manager.
  • Change bed linens, wash and iron patients' laundry, and clean patients' quarters.
  • Entertain, converse with, or read aloud to patients to keep them mentally healthy and alert.

Common Career Paths for Direct Support Professional

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While Direct Support Professionals do not often become Non-Profit Program Coordinators, the ones that do transition make an extra $14,074 per year. However, becoming a Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) or Qualified Mental Retardation Professional (QMRP) is a more frequent transition for Direct Support Professionals.

Direct Support Professional Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for Direct Support Professional

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Direct Support Professionals, experience in the field does not tend to play a major role in salary decisions; in general, pay does not go up drastically with more experience, and earnings grow incrementally instead. Starting at around $21K, salaries see a boost to $23K after five to 10 years. After 10 to 20 years, salary hovers around $26K. Salaries grow more slowly as Direct Support Professionals approach the 20-year mark, when the pay stabilizes at $26K. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up 13 percent of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than five, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining less than five. Age distribution in this workforce is concentrated between one and nine years of experience; most of respondents fall in this range.

Pay Difference By Location

Fargo
up arrow 43%
New York
up arrow 17%
Buffalo
up arrow 17%
Washington
up arrow 16%
Philadelphia
up arrow 9%
Pittsburgh
up arrow 2%
National Average
$22,000
Phoenix
up arrow 15%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For those looking to make money, Direct Support Professionals in Fargo enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 43 percent above the national average. Other urban areas shelling out big bucks include New York, Buffalo, Washington, and Philadelphia, where Direct Support Professionals typically earn around 17 percent, 17 percent, 16 percent, and 9 percent more than usual. Falling short of the national average by 15 percent, the area with the worst salaries is Phoenix.

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Direct Support Professional Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 18%
Experienced
up arrow 17%
Mid-Career
up arrow 6%
National Average
$22,000
Entry-Level
up arrow 3%

Skills That Affect Direct Support Professional Salaries

Residential
up arrow 4%
National Average
$22,000
Home Health/Home Care
up arrow 2%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 154 votes.

Gender

Female
82%
female alumni
 
Male
18%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
58%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
13%
20 years or more
4%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 58% dental benefits Dental: 50%
vision benefits Vision: 36% employee benefits None: 38%
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