Senior Chemical Engineer Salary

Average pay for Senior Chemical Engineers in the United States is more than reasonable, with annual salaries pushing past the six-figure mark ($100K). Total cash compensation to Senior Chemical Engineers approaches anywhere from $80K on the lower end to $149K on the higher end; in exceptional cases, this can include more than $20K from bonuses and upwards of $15K from profit sharing. Career length and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most Senior Chemical Engineers report high levels of job satisfaction. Men account for the majority of Senior Chemical Engineers who responded to the questionnaire — 81 percent to be exact. Almost all enjoy medical while a large number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a fair number. The information for this rundown comes from respondents who completed PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$78,195 - $135,322
MEDIAN: $99,971

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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.
$78,195 - $135,322  
$0.00 - $19,559  
Profit Sharing
$986 - $14,504  
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).
$79,805 - $148,815  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Sep 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 409
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Job Description for Senior Chemical Engineer

A senior chemical engineer holds supervisory role in chemical plants, supervising other engineers that work below them. Their duties include overseeing engineering staff and approving technical reports, making product design changes, and other specifications, and performing administrative duties related to their subordinates, such as staff development, budgeting, and training. In addition, senior chemical engineers also implement and oversee the continual improvement of product design areas. This is mostly an indoor job, as the senior chemical engineer is generally tasked with proper facilitation and supervision of the chemical plant as opposed to hands-on, physical tasks.


Senior Chemical Engineer Tasks

  • Scale production processes from prototype to full manufacturing capacity.
  • Select, test, maintain, and upgrade equipment and safety procedures.
  • Develop, test, and validate processes to create desired products, focused on quality and regulatory compliance.

Common Career Paths for

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Many Senior Chemical Engineers move into a Principal Process Engineer role, which does not lead to a big boost in pay. Principal Process Engineers on average bring in a similar salary to Senior Chemical Engineers.

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Popular Skills for

Senior Chemical Engineers who responded to the survey indicated only a few skills that they use on the job. Most notably, skills in Simulation, Engineering Design, Technical Analysis, and Chemical Process Engineering are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 6 percent and 13 percent. The majority of those who know Chemical Process Engineering also know Technical Analysis and Engineering Design.

Pay by Experience Level for

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

For many Senior Chemical Engineers, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. People who have worked for fewer than five years earn around $92K, and folks with five to 10 years of experience see a modestly higher median of $99K. Between one and two decades on the job, average salaries pass the six-figure mark at around $109K. In the end, the overall pattern seems to be that more experience generally corresponds to higher pay; a Senior Chemical Engineer with more than 20 years of experience can earn $121K on average.

Pay Difference by Location

With a pay rate for Senior Chemical Engineers that is 20 percent greater than the national average, Houston offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Senior Chemical Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Chicago (+13 percent). In Cincinnati, salaries are 4 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market.

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Experience Affects Salaries

National Average

Skills That Affect Salaries

up arrow 13%

Project Management
up arrow 3%

National Average

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 82 votes.


19 %
81 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 95% dental benefits Dental: 88%
vision benefits Vision: 72% employee benefits None: 3%