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Proofreader Salary (United States)

A typical Proofreader in the United States can expect to rake in roughly $19.04 per hour. Total cash compensation to Proofreaders approaches anywhere from $25K on the lower end to $63K on the higher end; in exceptional cases, this can include more than $2K from bonuses and upwards of $7K from profit sharing. Location and tenure each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. More than two-fifths of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, over one-half report medical coverage and nearly two in five claim dental coverage as well. Female Proofreaders are more prevalent than men — 69 percent of professionals in this field are women. The majority of Proofreaders claim high levels of job satisfaction. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Proofreader 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.
)
$28,812 - $60,513
(Median)
29K
39K
47K
61K
MEDIAN: $39,280
10%
50%
75%
90%
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Proofreader 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.
)
$11.36 - $30.22
(Median)
11
14
19
24
30
MEDIAN: $19.00
10%
25%
50%
75%
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$21K$42K$63K
Salary
$28,812 - $60,513  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,963  
Profit Sharing
$100.67 - $6,953  
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).
)
$24,732 - $62,530  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 164
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
$11.36 - $30.22  
   
Overtime
$17.23 - $36.82  
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 - $1,963  
   
Profit Sharing
$100.67 - $6,953  
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).
)
$24,732 - $62,530  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 341
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Job Description for Proofreader

Proofreaders check the quality and consistency of a written work. They monitor the accuracy in both the text and images, such as with grammar, spelling, page numbers, consistency in typeface, and the table of contents. Proofreaders receive the proofs of a publication just before they are to be published. There should be few errors in the final proof, so if a proofreader spots too many mistakes, they may refer back to the client and copyeditor.
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Proofreader Tasks
  • Proof new and existing materials to ensure accurate use of grammar and correct spelling.
  • Verify correct word breaks and that elements are set according to design specifications.
  • Ensure that all editorial changes have been inputed properly.
  • Assist in light copyediting.

Common Career Paths for Proofreader

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Proofreaders may not see a large difference in pay if they transition into an upper level Copywriter position. Copywriters typically do not make much more than Proofreaders.

Proofreader Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Proofreader

Proofreaders who responded to the survey report just a handful of professional skills. Those who have experience with Copywriting, Proofreading, and Editing can expect to be compensated well for these skills. Those proficient in Editing are, more often than not, also skilled in Copywriting.

Pay by Experience Level for Proofreader

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For many Proofreaders, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. Survey participants with less than five years' experience pocket $35K on average, but those with five to 10 years of experience enjoy a much bigger median of $42K. On average, Proofreaders make $46K following one to two decades on the job. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $47K on average. One to nine years of experience is standard for most employees in this area; a little over a half of respondents fit between this range. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up nearly one-fifth of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than one-tenth, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining slightly less than a fifth.

Pay Difference By Location

New York
up arrow 27%
Boston
up arrow 19%
Philadelphia
up arrow 17%
Washington
up arrow 16%
Los Angeles
up arrow 12%
Chicago
up arrow 6%
National Average
$40,000
Minneapolis
up arrow 14%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Proofreaders can earn above-average salaries when they head east to New York, Boston, and Philadelphia, the three most well-paid cities in the country for Proofreaders. Minneapolis ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 14 percent below the national average.

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Experience Affects Proofreader Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 18%
Mid-Career
up arrow 5%
National Average
$40,000

Skills That Affect Proofreader Salaries

Copywriting
up arrow 11%
Proofreading
up arrow 1%
Editing
0%
National Average
$40,000

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 100 votes.

Gender

Female
69%
female alumni
 
Male
31%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
6%
1-4 years
35%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
21%
20 years or more
18%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 55% dental benefits Dental: 41%
vision benefits Vision: 29% employee benefits None: 45%