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 $78K to approximately $146K. Experience level and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. The vast majority of Senior Chemical Engineers (82 percent) survey respondents are men. Almost all enjoy medical while a large number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a fair number. The majority of Senior Chemical Engineers claim high levels of job satisfaction. This snapshot results from replies to PayScale's salary survey.
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$76,469 - $133,266

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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.
$76,469 - $133,266  
$0.00 - $19,322  
Profit Sharing
$979 - $14,681  
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).
$77,850 - $145,735  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 427
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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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For Senior Chemical Engineers, career advancements do not tend to correlate with a rise in salary. On average, lower-level Senior Chemical Engineers earn similar salaries to those in higher-end positions like Principal Process Engineer.

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Popular Skills for Senior Chemical Engineer

Typical Senior Chemical Engineers report a focused set of job 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. Those educated in Chemical Process Engineering tend to be well versed 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.

For Senior Chemical Engineers, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. During the first five years of their careers, Senior Chemical Engineers see a median income of $90K. Survey respondents with five to 10 years of experience report an only modestly higher median of $97K. Six-figure salaries surface after one to two decades on the job — experienced professionals in this group reap a six-figure median of $108K. Survey participants who have spent more than 20 years on the job report a predictably higher median income of $122K, demonstrating that compensation is roughly commensurate with experience in the end.

Pay Difference by Location

Houston is home to an above-average pay rate for Senior Chemical Engineers, 22 percent higher than the national average. Senior Chemical Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Chicago (+8 percent). Cincinnati ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 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 3%

National Average

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 107 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: 88%
vision benefits Vision: 71% employee benefits None: 4%