Senior Chemical Engineer Salary

Generous salaries abound for Senior Chemical Engineers in the United States, with average pay above six figures ($99K) per year. Cash earnings for Senior Chemical Engineers — which occasionally include more than $19K from bonuses and more than $15K from profit sharing — stretch from around $77K to approximately $146K. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Nearly all report receiving medical coverage from their employers and most collect dental insurance. Among survey respondents, men are more common than women; 82 percent of Senior Chemical Engineers are male. For the most part, Senior Chemical Engineers enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. The information for this rundown comes from respondents who completed PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$75,134 - $132,988
MEDIAN: $98,528

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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.
$75,134 - $132,988  
$0.00 - $19,181  
Profit Sharing
$983 - $14,740  
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).
$76,904 - $145,691  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 438
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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 Senior Chemical Engineer

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Senior Chemical Engineers' salary tends to stay somewhat level for those who assume higher-end positions like Principal Process Engineer. Median pay for Principal Process Engineers is $109K.

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Popular Skills for Senior Chemical Engineer

Survey results show that Senior Chemical Engineers use a fair number of skills. Most notably, skills in Simulation, Engineering Design, Chemical Process Engineering, and Technical Analysis are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 7 percent and 14 percent. It is often found that people who know Chemical Process Engineering are also skilled in Technical Analysis and Engineering Design.

Pay by Experience Level for Senior Chemical Engineer

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

Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Senior Chemical Engineers — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. In this position, someone who has worked for fewer than five years can expect a median salary of $90K. The median for people with five to 10 years of experience is only a little bit higher at $96K. Experienced professionals who have spent one to two decades on the job can score lucrative paychecks that average out to $108K. Survey participants who have spent more than 20 years on the job report a predictably higher median income of $120K, demonstrating that compensation is roughly commensurate with experience in the end.

Pay Difference by Location

Surpassing the national average by 23 percent, Senior Chemical Engineers in Houston receive some of the highest pay in the country. Senior Chemical Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Chicago (+3 percent). Those in the field find the lowest salaries in Cincinnati, 2 percent below the national average.

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Experience Affects Senior Chemical Engineer Salaries

National Average

Skills That Affect Senior Chemical Engineer Salaries

up arrow 14%

Project Management
up arrow 4%

National Average

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 113 votes.


18 %
82 %

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: 94% dental benefits Dental: 87%
vision benefits Vision: 70% employee benefits None: 4%