Microbiologist Salary

Microbiologists in the United States take home approximately $49K annually on average. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Job satisfaction for Microbiologists is high. Most enjoy medical while a strong majority get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a majority. Men are slightly outnumbered by their female counterparts who answered the questionnaire, who make up a slight majority at 55 percent. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$35,360 - $74,005
(Median)
$35K
$49K
$74K
MEDIAN: $48,955
10%
50%
90%

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$14.13 - $29.73
(Median)
$14
$19
$30
MEDIAN: $18.00
10%
50%
90%

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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$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$35,360 - $74,005  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,138  
Profit Sharing
$550 - $4,500  
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).
)
$32,702 - $72,499  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 615
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$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$14.13 - $29.73  
   
Overtime
$20.56 - $37.20  
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$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,138  
   
Profit Sharing
$550 - $4,500  
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).
)
$32,702 - $72,499  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 318
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Job Description for Microbiologist

Microbiologist study the microorganisms that surround us. They focus on bacteria, viruses, algae, and even fungi. They research the ways that microorganisms affect us and how we might even be able to use them. A microbiologist not only has the task of tracking down microorganisms but they must also monitor and identify what type is being observed, their interaction(s), and more. They are also always thinking of new techniques that may aid in the prevention of disease spreading. A microbiologist researches new medications that are currently in clinical trials. Some microbiologists even develop new medicines and vaccines that have to then be registered. When working in a lab, they grow microbial cultures that are then used by the agriculture department as well as the food and beverage department for testing purposes. Many microbiologists travel frequently to collect samples from all types of environments. They must also perform and be trained in safety procedures to prevent contamination. A microbiologist can also be the supervisor in a lab; in these cases, they therefore must maintain and oversee a team of staff members who will assist them in reporting findings on computer and maintaining accurate records.


Microbiologist Tasks

  • Supervise laboratory staff, including schedules and tasks.
  • Perform assays and determinations of organisms and substrates for identification and to determine interactions.
  • Study and document growth, physiology, morphology, and general characteristics of microorganisms.
  • Write technical reports to communicate findings and procedures.

Common Career Paths for Microbiologist


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Microbiologists do not often transition into Quality Assurance Manager roles. The role averages $68K per year.

Microbiologist Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Microbiologist


Overall, survey participants reported applying a fair number of skills to their work. Most notably, skills in Molecular Biology, Research Analysis, Quality Assurance / Quality Control, and Microbiology are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Data Analysis and environmental monitoring. Those with knowledge of Molecular Biology tend to be skilled in Quality Assurance / Quality Control as well.

Pay by Experience Level for Microbiologist

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


For many Microbiologists, experience and pay levels seem to be correlated; more years in the business generally lead to more money. Workers in their first five years can expect to earn $41K, but people who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably bigger sum of $51K. For Microbiologists, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $59K. More than 20 years of experience seem related to solid financial gains; veterans in this group report earning a median of $68K.

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Experience Affects Microbiologist Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 46%

Experienced
up arrow 26%

Mid-Career
up arrow 9%

National Average
$47,000


Skills That Affect Microbiologist Salaries

Molecular Biology
up arrow 18%

Research Analysis
up arrow 5%

Quality Assurance / Quality Control
up arrow 2%

Microbiology
up arrow 1%

National Average
$47,000

environmental monitoring
up arrow 4%

Data Analysis
up arrow 11%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 186 votes.

Gender

Female
55 %
Male
45 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
8%
1-4 years
42%
5-9 years
27%
10-19 years
14%
20 years or more
8%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 89% dental benefits Dental: 78%
vision benefits Vision: 62% employee benefits None: 10%
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