Chemist Salary

Chemists in the United States can expect to earn an average of $54K per year. Total cash compensation to Chemists bottoms out near $35K and approaches $81K on the high end; the biggest paychecks include approximately $8K from bonuses and almost $6K from profit sharing. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the specific employer, followed by career length and geography. A large number enjoy medical while a fair number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to the larger part. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. More than half of Chemists (60 percent) survey respondents are men. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.

$38,798 - $82,584
$39K
$54K
$83K
MEDIAN: $54,471
10%
50%
90%

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$14.72 - $27.76
$15
$19
$28
MEDIAN: $19.24
10%
50%
90%

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$0$82K
Salary $38,798 - $82,584
Bonus $101.37 - $7,774
Profit Sharing $0.00 - $6,500
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).
)
$35,187 - $81,664
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 14 Oct 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 1,997
Hourly Data $0$41
Hourly Rate $14.72 - $27.76
Overtime $20.78 - $41.96
Annual Data $0$81K
Bonus $101.37 - $7,774
Profit Sharing $0.00 - $6,500
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).
)
$35,187 - $81,664
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 14 Oct 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 682

Job Description for Chemist

Chemists most often work in a lab setting of some sort. They maintain, troubleshoot, and use various instruments, equipment, and software tools utilized for chemical analysis and processing. Analytical techniques used by chemists include high-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC), gas chromatography (GC), and titration techniques. Strong data interpretation and analytical skills are required to be a chemist, as often times chemists are responsible for interpreting and analyzing data and equipment logs from other laboratory members. He or she needs to accurately report and track ingredient yields, quality measures, and occasionally microbiological results in addition to other key data sets. When necessary, the chemist must show an aptitude for experimental design. Additionally, chemists collect and document quality assurance test data, including testing formulations, substrates, and reagents. Chemists also must be very attentive to detail, especially since certain analytical tasks may be completely ruined with the slightest error.

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Chemist Tasks

  • Collect and document quality assurance test data, including testing formulations, substrates and reagents.
  • Interpret and analyze data and equipment logs from other laboratory members.
  • Maintain, troubleshoot, and use instruments, equipment and software tools.

Common Career Paths for Chemist


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Chemists don't often assume a higher-end position such as a Senior Chemist. Employees in that role get paid an average $75K per year. Going from Chemist to Analytical Chemist is the transition that occurs most often in this field, and the average paycheck for Analytical Chemists is $50K. Many others choose to work as Research Chemists, where pay is typically $58K.

Chemist Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Chemist


PPG Industries, Inc., Valspar Corporation, Ecolab, Inc., Sigma Aldrich Corp, and Advanced Testing Laboratory are among the top companies that take on many Chemists. Although salaries only range from $63K to just $96K, Valspar Corporation still offers the highest pay with a median paycheck of $73K. Soaring salaries can also be found at Sherwin Williams Co., PPG Industries, Inc., and Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc., where earnings of $63K, $57K, or $57K are standard for Chemists.

A few other companies with smaller-than-average paychecks include AAIPharma ($38K), Intertek ($41K), and Clean Harbors, Inc ($43K).

Popular Skills for Chemist


Chemists seem to require a rather large skill set. Most notably, facility with Chemistry, Project Management, and Troubleshooting are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 36 percent, 27 percent, and 24 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include GMP Compliance. For most people, competency in Quality Assurance / Quality Control indicates knowledge of Research Analysis and Product Development.

Pay by Experience Level for Chemist

Pay by Experience for a Chemist has a positive trend. An entry-level Chemist with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $47,000 based on 1,722 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Chemist with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $57,000 based on 577 salaries. An experienced Chemist which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $66,000 based on 369 salaries. A Chemist with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $76,000 based on 213 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $51,960

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Home to some of the best pay for Chemists, Cleveland offers exceptional salaries, 13 percent above the national average. Chemists will also find cushy salaries in Boston (+10 percent), New York (+9 percent), Philadelphia (+9 percent), and Houston (+8 percent). Falling short of the national average by 14 percent, the area with the worst salaries is Milwaukee. Workers in Seattle and San Diego earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (12 percent less and 11 percent less, respectively).

Chemist Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Chemist?

Chemist in York:
Pros: It gave me a sense of independence and allowed me to come up with my own ideas towards improving our product.
Cons: Sometimes there is a lull in the amount of work we have to accomplish, and there was little experience with understanding how the product was made for some time.

Chemist in Madison:
Pros:
Cons: Corporate culture, stress, poor communication.

Chemist in Madison:
"Sigma Aldrich."
Pros: It is a pretty ok place to work.
Cons: It is a pretty ok place to work.

Chemist in Milwaukee:
Pros: Varied work.
Cons: Doesn't pay what it's worth.

Chemist in Sugar Land:
Pros: Deoiler and enhance oil recovery expert in the oil field.
Cons: Inability to attend conferences for peer review.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Chemist

Gender

Female
41 %
Male
59 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 425 votes.
Less than 1 year
11%
1-4 years
51%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
12%
20 years or more
8%

Experience Affects Chemist Salaries

▲46%

▲26%

▲9%

National Average
$52,000

▼10%

Skills That Affect Chemist Salaries

▲35%


Troubleshooting
▲23%


Technical Writing
▲17%

Chemist
▲15%




Formulation
▲3%


HPLC
▼0%

National Average
$52,000




Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 425 votes.

Gender

Female
41 %
Male
59 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
11%
1-4 years
51%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
12%
20 years or more
8%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 85%
dental benefits
Dental: 73%
vision benefits
Vision: 62%
no benefits
None: 13%