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2019 Salary & Compensation Study Results

In AIHA’s Salary & Compensation Survey conducted in May 2019, 2,347 industry professionals, representing 21% of the 10,951 invited to participate, completed the survey. The resulting study is meant to provide members of the IH/OH community with detailed information on industry compensation practices, including salaries, bonuses, and benefits among other pertinent metrics.

AIHA's Adam Seery shares some preliminary findings from our recent salary and compensation survey. Find out what the average salary range is for your region and experience!

Executive Summary

I: Objective

The purpose of the Salary & Compensation Survey is to provide members of the IH/OH community with
detailed information on industry compensation practices, including salaries, bonuses, and benefits among
other pertinent metrics.

II: Findings – Participation

A total of 2,347 industry professionals, representing 21% of the 10,951 invited to participate, completed
the survey this year.

Out of this sample, 88% work in the United States, with the largest portions located in the South Atlantic
and Pacific regions. Beyond the United States, 8% of respondents are based in Canada and the remaining
4% are located elsewhere. The geographic region designations were determined from the employer
location reported in the Salary & Compensation Survey form.

The survey participants range in age from 21 to 93 years old. The largest single age group represented in
the study are those aged between 56 and 65 (27%). Also of note is a strong sample of young professionals
(i.e. those 35 years or younger), which makes up 20% of all respondents.

The sample featured in the study is diverse in terms of industry experience and trade certifications. 64%
of respondents are Certified Industrial Hygienists and another 38% are Certified Safety Professionals. 18%
of respondents hold no certifications.

Among those indicating a certification, the average respondent has held their certification for over 10
years, with the Certified Industrial Hygienists having the highest average certified period (16 years).
When looking at education levels, the majority of respondents (59%) have completed at least a Master’s

III: Findings - Base Salaries and Variable Compensation

Analysis of base salary and variable compensation provides insights into variances based on geographic
region, primary job role, and education level among other factors. Base salaries on average were
significantly higher in the United States than in Canada or elsewhere, although it should be noted that the
sample size outside of the United States was far less robust. The average variable compensation was
higher outside of the United States.

Within the United States, base salaries were relatively comparable across regions, with the West North
Central region having the lowest average and the Pacific region having the highest. 66% of participants
reported receiving some kind of bonus, variable, or incentive compensation, averaging $20,885 overall.

Among the primary job roles in the study, base salaries were highest among the Sales/Marketing and
Management categories, and lowest in the Education/Training category. Variable compensation was
highest in Management roles and lowest in Research roles.

Base salaries among all respondents generally increased with higher education levels. Respondents with
Doctorates reported the highest average base salary, followed by respondents with Master’s degrees.
Respondents who are Certified Industrial Hygienists were found to have higher Average Base Salaries than
those with other certifications or no certifications.

IV: Findings - Starting Salaries

Respondents were asked to report their starting salary in the industrial/occupational hygiene industry.
The average starting salary among young professionals (i.e., respondents aged 35 years or younger and 5
years or less industry experience) was $58,300. Within the United States, average starting salaries were
highest in the Pacific and East North Central regions.

VI: Findings – Benefits

In addition to salary & variable compensation, benefits are a critical component to a competitive
compensation package. Companies that are able to offer superior benefits tend to keep their employee
satisfaction levels high and their turnover rates low.

Of respondents whose employer offer 401(k) contribution matching program, the average matching
percentage was 14%. 10% of employers offering a matching program matched at a rate of 50% or greater.

Participants were asked what percentage of medical insurance premiums were paid for by their employer.
On average, employers paid for 63% of premiums, while 10% of respondents reported that their company
pays 0% of their premiums.

Aside from standard health insurance policies, the most popular Special Coverage benefits that employers
offer survey participants are: Dental Care (90%), Vision Care (85%), and Pharmacy (69%).

VII: Coming Soon – Interactive Report Dashboards

In Summer 2019, AIHA members who participated in the survey will have the opportunity to explore the
report findings via online interactive dashboards. Users will be able to analyze compensation and
benefits data by region, primary job role, age group, and geographic region among other measures. By
making those selections, the dashboard visuals will automatically adjust to show only the results from
their selections, allowing them to filter and analyze the data in the manner that is most relevant and
useful to them. The web-based report platform will also allow them to download that datasets for
further analysis or placement into work-files they may be creating.