Chemical Technicians: Salary Overview
Chemical technicians help chemists and chemical engineers research, produce and test products.
In their work, they use a variety of laboratory instruments.
Their exact job description depends on the field of employment.
Some chemical engineers work for medicine manufacturers where they are part of a team that researches and produces new medicine while others work in testing where they test samples and prepare chemical solutions.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual wage for chemical technicians was $52,910 in May 2019.
The median annual wage for this occupation was $49,260 as of May 2019, which means that half of all workers in this profession made less than this amount while half earned more.
Experience level, education, and the industry of employment are only some of the factors that determine a chemical technician’s salary.
The report published by BLS shows that in 2019 the lowest 10 percent of chemical technicians earned less than $31,110 while the top 10 percent made more than $80,350 per year.
In the following section, we’ll see how the wages vary depending on some of the factors mentioned above.
Chemical Technician Salary by Industry
According to BLS, chemical technicians held approximately 68,100 jobs in the United States in 2019, many of them working for testing laboratories or for pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturers.
The average annual salary reported by chemical technicians who worked in chemical manufacturing was $59,410.
Chemical technicians employed in the field of architectural, engineering and related services reportedly made $44,260 per year on average while those who worked in research earned $59,860.
The mean annual wage was $49,890 for chemical technicians who worked for pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturers and $49,830 for those who worked for chemical manufacturers.
The report shows that the highest-paying field for this profession was the industry of electric power generation, transmission, and distribution- a sector where chemical technicians were remunerated on average with $63,180 per year.
However, there are many other factors that determine a chemical engineer’s salary, besides the industry of employment.
One such factor is the region of employment.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the top-paying states for this profession are Alaska, the District of Columbia, Louisiana, Delaware, and New Jersey- states where chemical technicians earned more than $60,000 per year, on average.
On the other hand, chemical technicians in South Dakota earned less than $40,000 per year on average.
In conclusion, salaries vary widely depending on the region of employment, and if you’re willing to relocate, your earning prospects may increase.
But your salary also depends on your willingness to learn new things and to perfect your skills and if you gain additional skills or a new diploma or a degree you may also receive a pay raise.
Chemical Technician Salary by Experience and Education Level
As with any profession, experience plays an important part in helping chemical technicians earn pay raise.
As an inexperienced entry-level employee, your salary will most likely be close to the $30,000 mark but once you gain a few years of experience your earnings will increase.
A bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering, chemistry, or a related field may also help you get a promotion and a pay raise.
Although an associate’s degree is enough for this profession, spending a few more years in higher education can significantly increase your earning prospects.
With experience and additional training, you can be promoted to a chemical engineering position- a profession that is paid, on average, with $117,090 annually- more than double the average salary received by chemical technicians.
Job prospects are looking good for chemical technicians but the demand for this profession is largely dependent upon the demand for the type of products they specialize in.
According to BLS, employment growth for this profession is estimated at 3 percent- their services being sought especially in laboratories that test new materials and products and in the research field.
* Based on information from the May 2021 salary report from the BLS. The figures represent accumulated data for all states of employment for Chemical Technicians. BLS data represents averages and medians for workers at all levels of education and experience. This data doesn't represent starting salaries.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.