Salary and Outlook
According to the US Department of Labor, there are 85,400 people employed as chemists in
the United States.
The median annual salary is $79,300.
Entry level employees earn approximately $44,970 per year and senior employees earn approximately $139,650
Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.
- Maintain laboratory instruments to ensure proper working order and troubleshoot malfunctions when needed.
- Conduct quality control tests.
- Analyze organic or inorganic compounds to determine chemical or physical properties, composition, structure, relationships, or reactions, using chromatography, spectroscopy, or spectrophotometry techniques.
- Develop, improve, or customize products, equipment, formulas, processes, or analytical methods.
- Direct, coordinate, or advise personnel in test procedures for analyzing components or physical properties of materials.
- Purchase laboratory supplies, such as chemicals, when supplies are low or near their expiration date.
- Study effects of various methods of processing, preserving, or packaging on composition or properties of foods.
- Prepare test solutions, compounds, or reagents for laboratory personnel to conduct tests.
- Induce changes in composition of substances by introducing heat, light, energy, or chemical catalysts for quantitative or qualitative analysis.
- Evaluate laboratory safety procedures to ensure compliance with standards or to make improvements as needed.
- Compile and analyze test information to determine process or equipment operating efficiency or to diagnose malfunctions.
- Write technical papers or reports or prepare standards and specifications for processes, facilities, products, or tests.
- Confer with scientists or engineers to conduct analyses of research projects, interpret test results, or develop nonstandard tests.