Industrial Hygienist Salary
Job Description for Industrial Hygienist
An industrial hygienist is a specialist in evaluating workplaces and ensuring their safety for workers. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) defines industrial hygiene as “the science of anticipating, recognizing, evaluating, and controlling workplace conditions that may cause workers’ injury or illness.”Read More...
Industrial hygienists (sometimes called occupational hygienists) use a variety of tools and approaches to not only protect workers from harm, but to ensure that their work spaces are comfortable and efficient. Site visits are a key component of an industrial hygienist’s work. These visits allow industrial hygienists to assess risks such as toxic chemical exposure, dangerous levels of noise, extreme temperatures, poor air quality, the presence of radiation, repetitive motion, and emotional stress. An industrial hygienist performs careful evaluation and analysis of existing and potential future hazards. They use that information to help modify a workplace in a way that addresses current needs and risks, while also anticipating potential future hazards.
In general, an industrial hygienist must have at least a bachelor’s degree, usually in a scientific or engineering discipline. Many industrial hygienists also have master’s degrees, and some universities offer specific industrial hygiene degrees. Additionally, field experience is critical for the industrial hygienist. The job also requires an analytical mind and strong critical thinking skills, as well as the creativity and flexibility to design innovative solutions.
Industrial Hygienist Tasks
- Inspect and evaluate workplace environments, equipment, and practices, in order to ensure compliance with safety standards and government regulations.
- Investigate accidents to identify causes and prevention.
- Collaborate with engineers and physicians to institute control measures for potentially hazardous conditions or equipment.
- Order suspension of activities that pose threats to workers' health and safety.
- Conduct safety training and education programs, and demonstrate the use of safety equipment for new and current employees.
Common Career Paths for Industrial Hygienist
Though some Industrial Hygienists move into positions like Senior Environmental Health & Safety Engineer (where the average salary is $90K), this progression is not the norm. As Industrial Hygienists progress in their field, many go on to become Environmental Health & Safety Managers. In fact, this transition is more common than anything else, and pay for the position is usually $75K per year. Another common career choice for Industrial Hygienists is to move into a Safety Manager role. Typically, Safety Managers get paid $62K.
Industrial Hygienist Job Listings
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Popular Skills for Industrial Hygienist
Industrial Hygienists usually report a few specific skills. Most notably, skills in Industrial Hygiene, Safety Compliance, OSHA Compliance, and Risk Management / Risk Control are correlated to pay that is above average. It is often found that people who know Industrial Hygiene are also skilled in Safety Compliance.
Pay by Experience Level for Industrial Hygienist
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience and income seem to be closely related; in general, the survey respondents who had worked for more years reported higher incomes. Survey participants with less than five years' experience pocket $53K on average, but those with five to 10 years of experience enjoy a much bigger median of $71K. On average, Industrial Hygienists make $80K following one to two decades on the job. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $97K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.
Pay Difference by Location
With a pay rate for Industrial Hygienists that is 52 percent greater than the national average, Dallas offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Industrial Hygienists will also find cushy salaries in Richland (+48 percent), Albany (+30 percent), Houston (+19 percent), and San Jose (+12 percent). Place of residence plays a huge part in an Industrial Hygienist's salary, with Pittsburgh Industrial Hygienists earning salaries that are 31 percent less than the national average. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Baton Rouge (29 percent lower) and Salt Lake City (18 percent lower).