Optician Salary

An average Optician in the United States can expect to take home roughly $14.78 per hour. Final cash compensation to Opticians varies from around $22K to approximately $49K; choice pay grades include potential for bonuses and profit sharing as high as $4K and $5K, respectively. Compensation for this group is mainly affected by geographic location, but years of experience and the particular employer are influential factors as well. Although over a third lack health benefits of any kind, a little less than one-half do enjoy medical insurance, and nearly one in four get dental coverage, too. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Opticians. Most Opticians survey respondents are women (77 percent). The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.

$25,783 - $58,160
(Median)
$26K
$39K
$58K
MEDIAN: $39,158
10%
50%
90%

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$10.07 - $20.79
(Median)
$10
$15
$21
MEDIAN: $14.00
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$20K$40K$60K
Salary
$25,783 - $58,160  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,062  
Profit Sharing
$204.26 - $4,894  
Commission
$0.00 - $6,635  
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).
)
$21,618 - $48,681  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 399
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$11$22$33
Hourly Rate
$10.07 - $20.79  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.70 - $6.06  
Overtime
$13.20 - $30.70  
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$22K$44K$66K
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,062  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $6,635  
Profit Sharing
$204.26 - $4,894  
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).
)
$21,618 - $48,681  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 2,067
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Job Description for Optician

Opticians assist customers who require vision tests, prescriptions, repairs, and, in some cases, minor eye surgery; essentially, they helps customers determine which prescription they require and assist with any other questions or needs that they may have. Opticians use a piece of equipment called an phoropter to measure the depth of vision that each customer has, and then they are able to determine exactly which prescription the customer needs. Other equipment is also used, including a tonometer, which injects a small amount of air pressure into the eyeball to test for glaucoma. All opticians should be familiar with this equipment, and some may also be able to operate laser surgery machines for outpatient correction procedures.

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Optician Tasks

  • Prepare work order for optical laboratory containing instructions for grinding and mounting lenses in frames.
  • Measure patient for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames and optical prescription.
  • Design, measure, fit, and adapt lenses for patient according to written optical prescription.
  • Adjust frame and lens position to fit patient.

Common Career Paths for Optician


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Opticians who transition into an Optometrist role may receive large pay increases as the latter position pays an average $94K per year. Becoming a Dispensing Optician or a Certified Optician is a common transition from an Optician role.

Optician Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Optician


Opticians flock to Wal-Mart Stores, Inc, LensCrafters Inc., Visionworks, Pearle Vision Center, and U.S. Vision, Inc., highly regarded companies that employ a generous number of people in this profession. The biggest paychecks can be found at LensCrafters Inc. — the median salary there is $35K; however, employees are subject to a wide range in pay, with the lowest salaries sitting near $23K and highest ones in the neighborhood of $53K. Also paying near the top of the field are Visionworks at $35K, U.S. Vision, Inc. at $32K, and Sears Optical, where Opticians annually earn $31K.

Offering a median salary of only $25K, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc pays the least. Not only that, but the earnings range of $19K to $41K is pretty narrow, too. Shopko Eyecare Center, Texas State Optical, and Eye Care Center also scrape the bottom of the pay scale, with median earnings hovering around $26K, $27K, and $28K.

Popular Skills for Optician


Survey results suggest that Opticians put a wide range of professional skills to use. Most notably, skills in Sales Management, optician, certified optician, and Sales are correlated to pay that is above average. Most people familiar with Customer Service also know Insurance.

Pay by Experience Level for Optician

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


Opticians with a lot of experience tend to enjoy higher earnings. The average worker who claims fewer than five years of experience earns around $26K. In contrast, however, individuals who report five to 10 years in this occupation see a much larger median of $32K. Opticians bring in $36K after working for 10 to 20 years. Big financial gains seem to result from working for more than two decades; veterans in this group report earning $40K on average.

Pay Difference by Location


Surpassing the national average by 51 percent, Opticians in San Francisco receive some of the highest pay in the country. Opticians can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Seattle (+38 percent), New York (+35 percent), San Diego (+22 percent), and Denver (+13 percent). Trailing the national average by 16 percent, Indianapolis is the market with the smallest paychecks. Two other places where employers offer below-median salaries are Houston (12 percent less) and Chicago (9 percent less).

Optician Reviews

What is it like working as an Optician?

Optician in Gary:
"Work Flexibility."
Pros: I like that I work a typical 9-5 Monday through Friday schedule. There are NO nights and rare weekends. This is a great "mom" schedule.
Cons: No benefits, not much above minimum wage, everybody does the work of two people, no room for growth/raises, asked to do jobs outside your experience level or area of training.

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Experience Affects Optician Salaries



National Average
$32,000



Skills That Affect Optician Salaries

Sales Management
up arrow 19%

optician
up arrow 16%

certified optician
up arrow 2%

Sales
up arrow 1%

Customer Service
0%

National Average
$32,000

Insurance
up arrow 1%

Billing
up arrow 1%

Optometry
up arrow 2%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 392 votes.

Gender

Female
77 %
Male
23 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
28%
5-9 years
20%
10-19 years
24%
20 years or more
25%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 47% dental benefits Dental: 26%
vision benefits Vision: 38% employee benefits None: 38%
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