Top 20 highest paying jobs for 2022 – Ladders

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The top 20 highest paying jobs include managerial, healthcare, legal, engineering, and information technology positions. Workers in these positions get paid the highest salaries due to the in-demand skills they require. Many also require advanced degrees, certifications, licenses, and extensive work experience.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a statistical agency that monitors employment-related data in the United States. It issues the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH), a career resource that highlights important job-related statistics, including unemployment rates, pay rates, job growth, and more. The following jobs are listed in the OOH as the 20 highest-paying jobs in the U.S. Median annual salaries and projected job growth are also provided with each entry.
Let’s take a look.

Physicians and surgeons make up the highest-paying occupations in the U.S. The BLS breaks physicians and surgeons down into seven categories, making up eight out of the 20 highest-paying jobs on the BLS’s list:

Physicians and surgeons diagnose and treat a myriad of injuries and illnesses, and they work in both nonclinical and clinical environments. Nonclinical settings include insurance companies, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and corporations. Clinical settings include hospitals, physicians’ offices, clinics, and nursing homes.

Generally, physicians and surgeons need an advanced medical degree, which takes at least four years to complete following a bachelor’s degree. Depending on the area of specialization, physicians and surgeons are required to complete three to nine years in field internship and residency programs. Sub-specializations include an additional fellowship of one to three years.

Median Annual Pay:

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 3% from 2020 to 2030

Chief executives develop policies and strategies to help organizations meet their initiatives and goals.

Top executive positions are available in large and small organizations in virtually every industry. Executives often work irregular schedules that frequently include evenings and weekends. Travel is also common. Top executives usually need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and significant work experience to secure a position.

Median Annual Pay: $185,950

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 8% from 2020 to 2030

Nurse anesthetists, nurse practitioners, and nurse midwives coordinate patient care. They sometimes also provide primary and specialty care. Nurses can work in various healthcare settings, including physicians’ offices, nursing homes, clinics, patients’ homes, and hospitals.

The majority of advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) work full time. Nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners must have a minimum of a master’s degree in one of the APRN specialties. They must also pass a national certification exam and be licensed in the state in which they work.

Median Annual Pay: $117,670

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 45% from 2020 to 2030

Airline and commercial pilots navigate and fly helicopters, airplanes, and other aircraft.
They typically have variable work schedules. Overnight layovers are more common for airline pilots compared to commercial pilots.

Commercial pilots typically only require flight training. Airline pilots generally require a bachelor’s degree and work experience as a military or commercial pilot. Both airline and commercial pilots must meet Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements to fly.

Median Annual Pay:

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 13% from 2020 to 2030

The BLS breaks dentists out into five categories, making up five out of the 20 highest-paying U.S. jobs on the BLS’s list:

Dentists diagnose and treat issues with teeth, gums, and other parts of the mouth. They must hold a license in the state in which they work to practice. Though licensure requirements vary by state, most candidates must graduate from an accredited dental program and pass clinical and written exams.

Dentists can work with partners, have their own business, work alone, work with a small staff, or work as associate dentists for dental practices. Median pay varies based on the type of dental practice and specialty.

Median Annual Pay:

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 8% from 2020 to 2030

Computer and information systems managers direct, coordinate, and plan IT and computer-related activities in an organization. Candidates typically need a bachelor’s or graduate degree in information or computer science with relevant work experience.

Median Annual Pay: $151,150

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 11% from 2020 to 2030

Architectural and engineering managers coordinate, direct, and plan activities in architectural and engineering companies. They might also work for large companies that have engineering departments, such as oil and gas companies. Most architectural and engineering manager positions require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and several years of work experience as an engineer or architect.

Median Annual Pay: $149,530

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 4% from 2020 to 2030

Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers focus on generating brand loyalty and interest by promoting services and products. Many work in marketing and advertising agencies or in corporate offices for a variety of industries. Most advertising, promotions, and marketing management positions require a bachelor’s degree and work experience in advertising, marketing, promotions, or sales.

Median Annual Pay

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 10% from 2020 to 2030

Judges and hearing officers oversee legal processes in courts to apply the law. They are employed by federal, state, or local governments and mostly work in courts.

Typically, a judge has a law degree and prior work experience as a lawyer. Some hearing officers, administrative law judges, and magistrate positions only need a bachelor’s degree.

Median Annual Pay:

Job Outlook: Projected to grow 3% from 2020 to 2030

Here are a few more high-paying jobs, including median annual pay and projected growth:

For more information on jobs and job outlooks, the BLS updates its information regularly.

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