Monday, November 21, 2011
According to New Survey, Additional Education and Professional Licensure Also Drive Salaries Higher
Reston, Va.,—According to a new survey that outlines compensation ranges and trends in the engineering industry, the median income for civil engineers is $85,000 per year, which represents a 1percent decrease from $86,000 in 2010. The median income for all fields of engineering combined is $90,000, a decrease of 3 percent from 2010’s $93,000. The 2011 survey, which was held from April 2010 to March 31, 2011, yielded nearly 11,500 responses from engineers across the country in a variety of fields and at all levels of practice.
“In light of these new survey results, it is obvious that the job market for civil engineers still remains strong,” said Andrew W. Herrmann, P.E., F. ASACE, president of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). “However, in order maintain a pipeline of qualified civil engineers who can meet our nation’s ever increasing demand for infrastructure service, salaries are going to have to become more competitive with other engineering and science-related fields.”
Those survey respondents who are licensed professional engineers earned higher than average salaries, with a median income of $97,760. Those with a professional engineer’s license and a second professional registration earned the highest salaries, with a median income of $107,790 per year. Those engineers without professional licensing or certification earn significantly less, with a median annual income of $89,400. The survey found that median income consistently increases with the increase in engineering experience. The median income for engineers with less than one year of experience is $54,500 while the median income for an engineer with more than 25 years of experience is $123,311, representing a spread of 56 percent. Similarly, the median income increases with each additional level of education acquired. Survey participants holding a doctoral degree in engineering have a median income of $110,000, while those with only a bachelor’s degree in engineering have a median income of $82,712. However, those holding a master’s degree in business administration (MBA), or an MBA in combination with another master’s level degree, earn more than those who solely hold a master’s degree in engineering.
Overall, the median income for female engineers is $75,000. While the survey results show that among female engineers with more the 25 years of experience, the median income is significantly lower than that of male engineers with similar experience—$113,.250 and $124,000 respectively—the median incomes for female and male engineers with only 4 years of experience—$61,000 and $62,500, respectively—are much closer.
An engineer’s job function or the industry in which they work also has a significant impact on their compensation. Those working in executive, administrative and legal positions earn the highest median income, $144,000, while those working in drafting or estimation earn the lowest median income, $50,000. In the middle of the range are those in the areas of training/technical writing, production/quality management/maintenance and project management/engineering/operations, with median incomes from $90,194 to $98,275.
Regionally, engineers in California, Hawaii and Nevada are among the highest compensated, earning a median income of $98,600 while engineers in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho are among the lowest compensated, earning a median income of $80,484 The lowest median income by metropolitan area was found in Topeka, KS at $60,382, and the highest was found in Beaumont,-Port Arthur TX at $117,838. Rounding out the ten top highest incomes by metropolitan area were: Brazoria, Texas, ($115,600); San Jose, Calif., ($115,000); Vallejo-Fairfield-Napa CA ($115,000); Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-Lompoc, CA ($114,900); Bakersfield CA ($113,150); Houston, TX ($112,000); San Francisco, CA ($110,000); Fort Lauderdale, FL ($109,500) and Washington, D.C.-MD-VA-WV ($108,668). Rounding out the lowest 10 incomes by metropolitan area was: Topeka, KS ($60,382); South Bend, IN ($65,000); Burlington, VT ($65,000); Fort Wayne, IN ($65.500); and Newburgh, NY-PA ($66,000).
For more information on the 2008 Salary Survey, or to purchase a copy, visit: www.asce.org/salaries. Members of the media can obtain a complimentary copy by contacting Jim Jennings at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703-295-6406 or 540-272-1452 cell.
Founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) represents more than 140,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America’s oldest national engineering society. For more information, visit www.asce.org.