“According to the BLS, the national median salary in 2020 was $ 56,310. But many other factors such as location and level of experience can also have an impact on a good salary. “
The answer to the question “What is a good salary?” Can vary widely depending on factors such as country, age, and occupation, but it is still important to have a general understanding of salary information to help you decide which career path to take help and improve your career prospects. When you know what the fair salary is for your job, you will be empowered and better prepared to negotiate wages with your employer.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the national median salary in 2020 was $ 56,310. Although above average wages can be viewed as a good salary, there are no hard and fast rules for determining a good salary as there are many external factors at play. Below we’ve put together some general information to help you evaluate your salary and find the salary range that’s right for you.
Factors that can determine a good salary
To determine whether or not a salary is competitive, consider the following factors:
Education doesn’t always guarantee success in the professional field, but with a college degree or higher you have access to more job opportunities. Additionally, earning a degree from an established program in your field will usually increase your chances of being hired by top companies around the world. With a computer science degree from Stanford University, for example, your earning potential is significantly higher than with a comparable degree from a non-accredited institution.
Level of experience
As a general rule, the more experience you have, the more likely it is that you will receive a higher salary. Due to the shortage of skilled workers in the workforce, many companies today struggle to find applicants who have sufficient experience and who also meet the job requirements. As a result, salaries for these advanced positions are increasing. If you’ve just started your first job after college, a lower salary is usually expected. However, over the course of your career, you should see a steady increase in your annual income.
The industry you work in has a huge impact on your annual income. Higher salaries are typically required in high-tech areas that require longer training, education, or training, such as: B. Healthcare, Engineering, Finance, or Architecture. If you want to maximize your earning potential, consider pursuing a career in a lucrative field that interests you.
While the job title, experience, and level of education are the same, salaries in the United States can vary widely depending on where you are. This large wage gap is mainly due to differences in local labor demand, cost of living and tax rates. In San Francisco, the median annual salary for a software engineer is approximately $ 102,606. Whereas in North Carolina, software engineers take home a much lower salary at around $ 75,104 a year.
What is a good salary for living?
It can be difficult to reach consensus on what is considered a good salary. What one perceives as a decent salary may be unacceptable to the other. In addition, your spending habits, financial goals, debt levels, and other personal factors can all influence your ideal salary. To find out how much monthly income you need to live comfortably as a single person in different US states, use a cost of living calculator to compare locations.
Aside from getting a higher salary job to cover your monthly expenses, you can become more financially stable by maintaining a monthly budget and tracking your expenses. Living below your means can build your emergency fund, pay off debts, and have enough money to invest in your future. To motivate yourself to save every month, follow a monthly budget challenge to hold yourself accountable.
What is the average salary in the US?
According to the BLS National Employment and Wage Estimates as of May 2020, the average salary in the United States is $ 56,310 with an average wage of $ 20.17 an hour. It is estimated that women in the US will make about 82 cents for every dollar a man makes as of 2021. While this is an improvement compared to a decade ago, more needs to be done to achieve equal pay.
Average salary in the US by age and gender
How much women of different ages earn per week:
- 16-19: $ 467 ($ 24,284 annually)
- 20-24: $ 607 ($ 31,564 annually)
- 25-34: $ 850 ($ 44,200 annually)
- 35 through 44: $ 999 ($ 51,948 annually)
- 45-54: $ 1,002 ($ 52,104 annually)
- 55-64: $ 946 ($ 49,192 annually)
- 65+: $ 911 ($ 47,372 annually)
How much men of different ages earn per week:
- 16-19: $ 511 ($ 26,572 annually)
- 20-24: $ 667 ($ 34,684 annually)
- 25-34: $ 950 ($ 49,400 annually)
- 35-44: $ 1,232 ($ 64,064 annually)
- 45-54: $ 1,334 ($ 69,368 annually)
- 55-64: $ 1,224 ($ 63,648 annually)
- 65+: $ 1,102 ($ 57,304 annually)
Source: Business News, BLS
Average salary in the US by education
Note: All reported numbers are weekly earnings
- Less than a high school diploma: $ 592 ($ 30,784 annually)
- High school diploma: $ 746 ($ 38,792 annually)
- Any college, no degree: $ 833 ($ 43,316 annually)
- Associate Degree: $ 887 ($ 46,124 annually)
- Bachelor’s Degree: $ 1,248 ($ 64,896 annually)
- Masters Degree: $ 1,497 ($ 77,844 annually)
- Professional Degree: $ 1,861 ($ 96,772 annually)
- PhD: $ 1,883 ($ 97,916 annually)
Source: Career Outlook
Average salary in the US by industry
- Food Preparation: $ 27,650
- Preventive Health Care: $ 32,250
- Toiletries and Service: $ 32,610
- Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry: $ 33,310
- Construction and Extraction: $ 53,940
- Education: $ 59,810
- Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media: $ 64,400
- Business and Financial Operations: $ 80,680
- Architecture and Engineering: $ 90,300
- Computers and Math: $ 96,770
Source: employment and wage statistics
This is how you get a high paying job
In a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, 63 percent of employees say that salary level is very important to their overall job satisfaction. Of course, a high salary doesn’t always guarantee professional fulfillment and happiness, but it can add some degree of financial stability to your life. Are you thinking about finding a job in a better paying field but don’t know how to go about it? Below are some tips to help you find a lucrative job in today’s competitive workforce.
1. Future proof your skills
With the advent of artificial intelligence and sophisticated technology, the nature of work is constantly changing and it is important to keep up with the latest trends and develop skills that will be valuable in the future. For example, rapidly growing professions such as data scientist and information security analyst are in high demand in the technology industry these days due to the growing volume of data and cybersecurity issues. As a result, professionals in these areas often receive generous compensation for their work. Future-proof your career today by continuing your education and staying valuable in the workplace despite the ever-changing labor market.
2. Get career advice from a mentor
A mentor can vastly accelerate your career path by guiding you in the right direction and providing valuable insights that will help you achieve professional success. Additionally, a mentor can connect you to the right resources in your search for higher paying job opportunities, provide motivational career advice, and hold you accountable for your goals.
If your current employer has a mentoring program, take advantage of it by asking your mentor questions about development opportunities in the company and telling them your goal of getting a higher paying position so they can better guide you in the right direction.
3. Become an expert in your field
In 2018, over 7 million jobs were open in the United States, but only 6.3 million unemployed people were actively seeking work (SHRM). With the growing skill gap in the workforce, companies are facing increasing difficulties in recruiting and filling positions for highly skilled positions.
To gain a competitive advantage in the workforce today, one of the best decisions is to become an expert in your field by investing in ways to expand your knowledge. Be it by attending webinars, attending school, or attending training courses, trying to expand your expertise can lead to career growth and salary increases.
4. Attend networking events
Did you know that 80 percent of the positions are filled through personal and professional connections? Networking events not only give you the very latest in industry trends, but are also a great way to expand your network and create opportunities for yourself. Don’t forget to have your business card or resume handy and be ready to effectively sell yourself and your skills at these professional events. You never know when you will meet someone who can help you achieve the high paying career you have always dreamed of.
With a better understanding of how your salary fares in the job market and what factors affect your salary, you can now decide for yourself what a good income level is. As you advance in your career, you will most likely be rewarded more for your experience in the field. But even as your monthly income increases, it is important to manage your money wisely and to keep track of your savings on a regular basis. Consider using the Mint app to help you budget and get the most out of your salary.
Sources: | BLS | CNBC | SHRM | Subsistence level | Washington Post | New York Times |