America’s Highest-Paying Office Jobs

October 12, 2011    

Original Article: Forbes

By Jacquelyn Smith

If you want to keep getting raises, get promoted to senior management. As tough as the economy has been, people in executive positions saw their paychecks increase by an average of 2.7% this year, to $102,000. That’s according to data just released by Compdata Surveys, a national compensation survey and consulting firm in Olathe, Kan.

Compdata looked at base salaries for 26 senior management jobs below C-level. For the seventh consecutive year, commercial lending directors take the top spot, with the highest average paychecks. They are earning $139,000 in 2011, up from $132,500 last year.

“Commercial lending directors were well paid prior to the economic downturn, and although the industry has faced difficult times in recent years, other director level positions have remained unchanging,” says Amy Kaminski, director of marketing for Compdata Surveys. “This has allowed commercial lending directors’ pay to remain at the top of the scale.”

Ranking second on the list, general managers are making an average of $127,900 this year, up 2.5% from 2010. In the No. 3 position, engineering directors are earning $122,200, up slightly from $122,100 last year.

“In an economy where many organizations are implementing salary freezes and reductions just to get by, it’s encouraging to see salaries for many jobs rising, even if some increases are very modest,” Kaminski says. “As industries begin to recover, it will be more important than ever for companies to make an effort to hold onto their most valuable assets–their employees. Offering a balanced yet competitive compensation package will be the key to employee retention as the economy grows.”

Even those in the list’s lowest-paying jobs are making more than last year. Advertising and public relations managers and human resources managers rank at the bottom of the group of office jobs, with average salaries of $78,500 and $75,400 respectively, but both are enjoying small year-over-year increases and significant five-year growth.

The biggest winners over a five-year period are finance directors, who are earning 23.7% more this year than in 2006, and commercial lending directors, whose paychecks have grown 14% in the same period.

Of the 26 jobs included in the survey, only three—operations directors, information systems directors and human resource directors–are earning less in 2011 than last year. Two others—development officers and national sales managers–have seen their paychecks shrink from 2006, but have done better since 2010.

 Original Article: Forbes

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