Median pay for Geographic Information Systems Specialists in the United States is around $50K per year. In the world of Geographic Information Systems Specialists, total cash compensation can vary between $38K and $69K. Each package generally includes bonuses and profit sharing proceeds, and in exceptional cases, those amounts can reach heights of $7K and $5K, respectively. Geographic location and career duration each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and a fair number earn dental coverage. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Male Geographic Information Systems Specialists who responded to the survey are more common than women; more than half (69 percent) are men. Respondents to the PayScale salary survey provided the data for this report.
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$38,691 - $69,600
(Median)
$39K
$50K
$70K
MEDIAN: $50,414
10%
50%
90%

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$16.76 - $31.75
(Median)
$17
$21
$32
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$24K$48K$72K
Salary
$38,691 - $69,600  
   
Bonus
$198.66 - $6,705  
Profit Sharing
$-0.50 - $4,848  
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).
)
$37,702 - $69,400  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 371
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$16$32$48
Hourly Rate
$16.76 - $31.75  
   
Overtime
$20.86 - $46.28  
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$32K$64K$96K
Bonus
$198.66 - $6,705  
   
Profit Sharing
$-0.50 - $4,848  
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).
)
$37,702 - $69,400  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 164
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Job Description for Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist

Geographic information systems (GIS) is a term used to describe the collection and collation of various types of data in order to visually represent that data, most often in the form of charts or maps. These systems are used by a vast array of organizations for an even larger number of applications. GIS specialists are in charge of the construction of display material from GIS data, as well as the maintenance, development, and implementation of the hardware, software, and databases needed to accomplish specific tasks.

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Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist Tasks

  • Research and test new data sources, software, and organizational tools.
  • Create and implement standards for quality of geographic data.
  • Design, develop, and implement systems and databases for storing and accessing geospatial data.
  • Standardize and define metadata for geographic data, and track need for data format conversion.

Common Career Paths for Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist


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Geographic Information Systems Specialists who go on to become Geographic Information Systems Project Managers may see their salaries climb quite a bit. Median pay for Geographic Information Systems Project Managers is $68K annually. As Geographic Information Systems Specialists progress in their field, many go on to become Geographic Information Systems Analysts. In fact, this transition is more common than anything else, and median pay for the role is $48K. Another common career choice for Geographic Information Systems Specialists is to move into a Senior Geographic Information Systems Specialist role — this promotion usually pays $61K.

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Popular Skills for Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist


Survey results suggest that Geographic Information Systems Specialists use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Python, ArcGIS, Data Analysis, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Cartography and Global Positioning Systems. It is often found that people who know Data Analysis are also skilled in Data Management.

Pay by Experience Level for Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist

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


Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Geographic Information Systems Specialists — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $46K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $53K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Geographic Information Systems Specialists with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $59K. Ultimately, more time spent in the workforce does seem to translate to bigger paychecks; seasoned veterans with more than 20 years of experience report a median income of $67K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $49,511

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

For those looking to make money, Geographic Information Systems Specialists in Phoenix enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 36 percent above the national average. Geographic Information Systems Specialists will also find cushy salaries in Washington (+27 percent), New York (+12 percent), Madison (+3 percent), and Boston (+3 percent). Those in the field find the lowest salaries in Portland, 19 percent below the national average. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Richmond (17 percent lower) and Dover (16 percent lower).

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Experience Affects Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist Salaries




National Average
$50,000


Skills That Affect Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist Salaries

up arrow 7%

ArcGIS
up arrow 3%

Data Analysis
up arrow 1%

National Average
$50,000

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
up arrow 1%

Data Management
up arrow 2%

Web Development
up arrow 3%


Cartography
up arrow 15%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 78 votes.

Gender

Female
31 %
Male
69 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
49%
5-9 years
28%
10-19 years
17%
20 years or more
4%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 84%
dental benefits
Dental: 75%
medical benefits
Vision: 65%
dental benefits
None: 13%
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