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Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type) Salary

One-half of Senior Research Scientists in the United States have been in the field for more than 10 years. Pay can fall anywhere from $65K to $142K per year, but median earnings come to around $97K per year. Total cash earnings of Senior Research Scientists range from $65K on the low end to $142K on the high end; the final amount can include bonuses and profit sharing proceeds that occasionally exceed $16K and $10K, respectively. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is the company, followed by the particular city and experience level. Medical benefits are awarded to almost all, and a large number earn dental coverage. Generally, women make up less than a third of all Senior Research Scientists who answered the questionnnaire. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$64,674 - $134,771
(Median)
$65K
$97K
$130K
MEDIAN: $96,673
10%
50%
90%

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$18.16 - $77.25
(Median)
$18
$35
$77
MEDIAN: $34.00
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$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$64,674 - $134,771  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $15,613  
Profit Sharing
$1,834 - $10,256  
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).
)
$64,970 - $141,975  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 1,494
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$28$56$84
Hourly Rate
$18.16 - $77.25  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $82.43  
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$60K$120K$180K
Bonus
$0.00 - $15,613  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,834 - $10,256  
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).
)
$64,970 - $141,975  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 35

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Job Description for Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type)

Senior research scientists lead the formulation, development, and optimization of new programs, designs, and prototypes. They stay on the cutting age of modern science, assessing new technologies and their future applications. They propose, plan, and manage research projects. Many positions are based out of university research departments or laboratories, but other positions can be with technology companies or government-run agencies.

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Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type) Tasks

  • Assess new technologies and future applications of technologies.
  • Propose, plan, and manage research projects, report preparation, and presentation of findings.
  • Lead the formulation, development, and optimization of new programs, designs, and prototypes.
  • Participate in research formulating and writing with other staff.

Common Career Paths for Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type)


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Senior Research Scientists may experience a large salary bump if they progress into a role such as Research & Development Director. The latter position pays an average of $134K annually. A Principal Scientist role is the most common promotion for Senior Research Scientists moving up the ladder, and pay for the position tends to be around the $121K mark. Another typical, albeit less common, transition for Senior Research Scientists is a Biotechnology Senior Research Scientist position, where earnings are usually $97K.

Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type) Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type)


Pfizer, Inc., Merck & Co., Inc., GlaxoSmithKline, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, and Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc. are among the top companies that take on many Senior Research Scientists. Bristol-Myers Squibb Company offers the highest compensation with a median salary of $122K.

Salaries are easily beat at GlaxoSmithKline, where median pay comes to just $77K, the lowest in the field. What's more, with base pay starting at $68K and ending at $105K, range in salary is rather small.

Popular Skills for Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type)


Senior Research Scientists seem to require a rather large skill set. Most notably, facility with Physics, Matlab, and Bioinformatics are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 23 percent, 10 percent, and 8 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Molecular Biology, Chemistry, and toxicology. Most people skilled in Data Analysis are similarly competent in Project Management. The majority of those who know Research Analysis also know Product Development, Project Management, and Material Science.

Pay by Experience Level for Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type)

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


For Senior Research Scientists, level of experience appears to be a somewhat less important part of the salary calculation — more experience does not correlate to noticeably higher pay. Folks with fewer than five years of experience take home $88K on average, and those who have worked for five to 10 years see a bigger median salary of $98K. Those with 10 to 20 years of experience under their belts can expect their paychecks to flourish around the six-figure median of $103K. As Senior Research Scientists reach more than two decades on the job, compensation remains commensurate with experience; the average pay in this group is $125K.

Pay Difference by Location


Home to some of the best pay for Senior Research Scientists, San Jose offers exceptional salaries, 32 percent above the national average. Senior Research Scientists will also find cushy salaries in San Francisco (+11 percent), Philadelphia (+11 percent), Cincinnati (+10 percent), and Cambridge (+9 percent). Atlanta is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 10 percent. Employers pay around 9 percent less in Chicago and 2 percent less in Houston, below-median salaries for those in this field.

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United States (change)

Experience Affects Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type) Salaries



National Average
$99,000



Skills That Affect Senior Research Scientist (Unspecified Type) Salaries

Physics
up arrow 23%

up arrow 10%


Bioinformatics
up arrow 8%


Project Management
up arrow 4%

Research Analysis
up arrow 1%

Material Science
up arrow 1%

Proposal Writing
up arrow 1%

Data Analysis
0%

Product Development
0%

National Average
$99,000

toxicology
up arrow 3%

Chemistry
up arrow 11%


Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 305 votes.

Gender

Female
27 %
Male
73 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
20%
5-9 years
27%
10-19 years
32%
20 years or more
18%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 94% dental benefits Dental: 84%
vision benefits Vision: 67% employee benefits None: 5%
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