Organizational Psychology Salary: What You’ll Earn

Find out what you could earn as an industrial-organizational psychologist.

organizational-psychology-salary

The salary range for psychologists can vary widely based on a variety of factors, including years of experience in the field, where you live, and the location and size of the company or organization you work for. Type of company (profit or non-profit?) may come into play as well.

Below are some points of comparison for psychologists in different fields of psychology so you can see how a career in industrial-organizational psychology stacks up salary-wise.

As you can see, regardless of where you work, the earning potential in this helping profession is quite healthy.

Median Annual Salary

Organizational psychology offers great pay potential, and an encouraging job market, despite the small size of the field. Here are some statistics on salaries, job growth and employers.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ current Occupational Outlook Handbook, the median national annual salary for industrial-organizational psychologists is $87,100. Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors.

What is my earning potential?

Salaries for industrial-organizational psychologists can be lucrative, with the BLS reporting that the top 10 percent earned more than $184,520. As with every career, experience plays an enormous factor in salary.

How does an organizational psychologists’ salary compare to other psychology careers?

Psychologists tend to make a good salary. Compare the median salaries below, broken out by specialty.

Psychology CareerMedian Annual Salary*
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists$75,090
General Psychologists$97,740
Industrial/Organizational Psychologists$87,100

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2018-19 Occupational Employment Handbook; Industrial-Organizational Psychologists.

*The salary information listed is based on a national average, unless noted. Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors. National long-term projections of employment growth may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.

What kinds of companies hire organizational psychologists?

Often, people in this career field will work as independent contractors and consultants. According to the BLS, industrial-organizational psychologists are most frequently employed by the following types of industries:

  • Management, scientific and technical consulting firms
  • Research and development
  • State government
  • Colleges and universities

Industrial-Organizational Psychology Salaries by Employer Type

Different industries also tend to pay their workers more or less. Compare the salaries of I/O psychologist in the top-paying industries.

Employer TypeAnnual Wage
Scientific Research and Development$119,690
State Government$67,780
Management of Companies$113,900
Scientific and Technical Consulting Companies$103,040

Is there demand for this career?

Demand for industrial-organizational psychologists will increase as more and more organizations and companies acknowledge and require their services to help hire and retain employees. I/O psychologists will also be relied upon to increase productivity in the workplace by identifying potential improvement areas.

What is the job growth for the field?

Employment of psychologists is expected to grow 14%, much faster than the average for all occupations through 2026, while I/O psychologists can expect an 8% job growth rate for the same time frame. This is just a point above the national average for all careers. Do note, though, that national long-term projections of employment growth may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.

Competition will be tough for graduates of I/O psychology until the field widens and job opportunities arise. The BLS reports that since the occupation is still small, competition may be fierce for the most desirable jobs. There will also be heavy competition due to the large number of qualified graduates coming out of universities and colleges.

How do I advance in my organizational psychology career?

Graduates with a master’s degree can find entry directly into the field as an industrial-organizational psychologist, but the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that getting extensively trained in quantitative research methods or computer science may provide the competitive edge you’ll need to actually land a position in the field. Too, earning a PhD or PsyD in I/O psychology can better prepare you for academic and research roles. To learn more about the education required for industrial-organizational psychologists, research your options, select your program and talk to a school of your choice today.

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