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Career Profile: Industrial-Organizational Psychologists

Apply principles of psychology to human resources, administration, management, sales, and marketing problems. Activities may include policy planning; employee testing and selection, training, and development; and organizational development and analysis. May work with management to organize the work setting to improve worker productivity.

Salary and Outlook

According to the US Department of Labor, there are 4,900 people employed as industrial-organizational psychologists in the United States. The median annual salary is $96,300. Entry level employees earn approximately $57,440 per year and senior employees earn approximately $192,800 per year.

Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.

Job Duties

  • Provide advice on best practices and implementation for selection.
  • Counsel workers about job and career-related issues.
  • Advise management concerning personnel, managerial, and marketing policies and practices and their potential effects on organizational effectiveness and efficiency.
  • Formulate and implement training programs, applying principles of learning and individual differences.
  • Conduct research studies of physical work environments, organizational structures, communication systems, group interactions, morale, or motivation to assess organizational functioning.
  • Conduct presentations on research findings for clients or at research meetings.
  • Provide expert testimony in employment lawsuits.
  • Study consumers' reactions to new products and package designs, and to advertising efforts, using surveys and tests.
  • Review research literature to remain current on psychological science issues.
  • Write reports on research findings and implications to contribute to general knowledge or to suggest potential changes in organizational functioning.
  • Participate in mediation and dispute resolution.
  • Analyze data, using statistical methods and applications, to evaluate the outcomes and effectiveness of workplace programs.
  • Develop interview techniques, rating scales, and psychological tests used to assess skills, abilities, and interests for the purpose of employee selection, placement, or promotion.
  • Develop and implement employee selection or placement programs.
  • Identify training and development needs.
  • Train clients to administer human resources functions including testing, selection, and performance management.
  • Facilitate organizational development and change.
  • Analyze job requirements and content to establish criteria for classification, selection, training, and other related personnel functions.
  • Assess employee performance.
  • Observe and interview workers to obtain information about the physical, mental, and educational requirements of jobs as well as information about aspects such as job satisfaction.
  • Coach senior executives and managers on leadership and performance.
  • Study organizational effectiveness, productivity, and efficiency, including the nature of workplace supervision and leadership.
  • Conduct individual assessments, including interpreting measures and providing feedback for selection, placement, or promotion.
  • Write articles, white papers, or reports to share research findings and educate others.
  • Develop new business by contacting potential clients, making sales presentations, and writing proposals.

Career List

Job Outlook


Total Current Jobs:
4,900
Annual Openings:
300
Increase in Openings by 2030:
2%
Annual Salary Range:
$57,440 - $192,800
Education Requirements:
Master's degree or higher