Compliance officers
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Overview
Examine, evaluate, and investigate eligibility for or conformity with laws and regulations governing contract compliance of licenses and permits, and perform other compliance and enforcement inspection and analysis activities not classified elsewhere. Excludes "Financial Examiners" (13-2061), “Tax Examiners and Collectors, and Revenue Agents" (13-2081), “Occupational Health and Safety Specialists” (29-9011), “Occupational Health and Safety Technicians” (29-9012), "Transportation Security Screeners" (33-9093), “Agricultural Inspectors” (45-2011), “Construction and Building Inspectors” (47-4011), and “Transportation Inspectors” (53-6051).
Predicted employment growth
Over the next decade, jobs for compliance officers are expected to grow by 8%, and should have about 26,000 job openings a year.
Safety from automation
Compliance officers are less likely to be automated than 77% of other careers.
Workforce size
Compliance officers, with 288,300 workers, form a larger workforce than 84% of careers.
Education
About 64% of compliance officers have at least a bachelor's degree.
Education attained by compliance officers
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Context: workers with bachelor's degrees
More compliance officers have bachelor's degrees than 78% of other careeers.
Salaries
The median (middle) salary for compliance officers is higher than 76% of all other jobs' middle salaries. The graph shows inflation-adjusted salaries for most compliance officers.
This job's median $69KAll jobs' median $39K$70K$38K20142015201620172018$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100K$120K
Context: Median Salary
Gender
Women account for 53% of compliance officers -- that's a larger percentage than 67% of other jobs.
Gender of compliance officers
Men
Women
Context: Salary inequity
For each career, we compared the median (middle) men's salary to the median women's salary. For compliance officers, the median men's salary was 15% more the median woman's salary.
Race/Origin
About 21% of compliance officers are minority, and 10% are foreign-born.
Race/origin of compliance officers
White
Black
Pacific Islander
Hispanic
Asian
American Indian
Multiracial
Other
Context: Foreign-born workers (10%)
Where are the most jobs?
We ranked the number of jobs in Compliance Officers per thousand workers in each state, DC, and Puerto Rico. The darker the blue, the higher the job density.
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
Job benefits
Employer or union-sponsored pension plans are offered to 65% of compliance officers, and 80% have company-sponsored health insurance (15% have dependents enrolled in their employer's health plan).
Employer-provided health coverage for compliance officers
100% premiums covered
Partial premiums covered
Plan with no cost sharing
No health insurance
Top college degrees
Here are the top college degrees held by the 65% of people in this job who have at least a bachelor's degree. Some of degrees may link to multiple programs due to the way Census classifies college majors. Click on a program to learn more about career opportunities for people who major in that field.
The downside
Some jobs are more stressful than others, and some are just plain dangerous. The following list gives the percentages of compliance officers who report hazardous or difficult situations typically occurring at least once a week.
  • Time Pressure (59%)
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People (47%)
  • Frequency of Conflict Situations (46%)
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety (37%)
  • Consequence of Error (35%)
  • Exposed to Contaminants (32%)
SOURCES:24.0 O*NET
Salary and diversity
Salary overview
What do compliance officers earn?

In this section, we want to give you a clear idea of what you can expect to earn in this career. We use two sources of data here: the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which asks employers to classify their workforce and to report salaries using the SOC-specialty level of reporting, and the American Community Survey (ACS), which asks people to classify their jobs using the broad classifications that ididio uses for career profiles, and to self-report their salaries. For some jobs, the differences in survey approaches between BLS and ACS can paint a very different end-picture. Whenever possible, we provide data from both sources.

The BLS-compiled salary data is reported by companies for their employees. This data excludes self-employed workers. We first show the distribution of salaries for compliance officers, and then we show how the middle (median) salary for compliance officers compares to the BLS-computed median salaries of other careers.
Distribution: Salaries for compliance officers (BLS Salary Data)
$69K$0$50K$100K$150K
Context: Median salaries across careers (BLS Salary Data)
$69K$0$50K$100K$150K
We compiled household data from the ACS to determine the salaries that people working at least 35 hours a week report themselves to earn. Unlike the BLS estimates, this data includes self-employed wages. We first show the full salary distribution for all compliance officers, and then we show how the median (middle) salary for compliance officers compares to the median ACS-reported salary of other careers.
Distribution: Salaries for compliance officers (ACS Salary Data)
$65K$0$50K$100K$150K
Context: Median salaries across careers (ACS Salary Data)
$65K$0$50K$100K$150K
Employers and salary
A look at employers and corresponding salaries
The donut shares the break-down of workers by employer type, and following we show the salary distributions for these workers based on those employer types. For some careers, the salaries can be vastly different between private, government, and self-employment. As with our salary overview, we view the both the BLS economists' salary profiles and the household-reported salaries from ACS to get a thorough understanding of where compliance officers work and for what salary. We have the great faith in the accuracy of economist-vetted BLS data; however, the BLS restrictions on which employers are surveyed skews the data a bit (read more in the sources), and the ACS responses provide different and useful categorizations of employers and salaries.
Employers of Compliance officers (ACS)
Private for-profit (52.5%)
Private not-for-profit (6.5%)
Local government (10.9%)
State government (14.3%)
Federal government (15.2%)
Self-employed incorporated (0.3%)
Self-employed not incorporated (0.3%)
Working without pay (0.0%)
Distribution: Salaries of compliance officers by type of employer (ACS data)
Following are the salary distributions by employer type calculated by aggregating individual household survey responses.
$65K$70K$80K$67K$75K$51K$54K$0$50,000$100,000$150,000Self-employed not incorporatedFederal governmentState governmentLocal governmentPrivate not-for-profitPrivate for-profitAll
Distribution: Salaries of compliance officers by type of employer (BLS data)
Following are the salary distributions by employer type as reported by BLS based on large employer-focused surveys. We note that smaller employer categories are not included by BLS.
$69K$86K$57K$70K$54K$0$20,000$40,000$60,000$80,000$100,000$120,000Federal governmentState governmentLocal governmentPrivateAll
Age and career advancement
Salary growth for compliance officers

The biggest take-away from the following two charts is the relationship between salary and experience that we can infer from age. Does this job seem to attract especially younger or older workers? Does it reward experience?

Take a minute a look at how much you might expect your salary to increase with each five years' experience, as well as how the numbers working in this career changes. We only provide this data when there are enough consistent ACS survey responses to allow a reasonable margin of error, so for some careers you will see gaps in our reporting of salary by age.

$72K$71K$73K$48K$72K$59K$72K$33K$63K$0$50K$100K$150KSalary distribution20-2425-2930-3435-3940-4445-4950-5455-5960-64
010K20K30K40KNumber employed20-2425-2930-3435-3940-4445-4950-5455-5960-64

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Gender and Equity
Compliance officers and gender

With 53% women, this occupation has a higher percentage of women than 67% of careers.

Context: Women in the workforce
53%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Gender of Compliance officers
Men (47%)
Women (53%)
Distribution: Salaries by gender

As we'll illustrate at the bottom of this section, the median salary for all full-time male workers in the US exceeds the full-time median salary for women by 20%. The situation is a little better for compliance officers, with the median salary for men 15% higher than the median salary for women. This chart shows you the salary range for most workers by gender.

$61K$70K$0$50K$100K$150KWomenMen
Context: Salary Inequity

Nationwide there are twenty careers for which men do not have a higher median (middle) salary than women. The chart below shows the salary inequity, the percentage by which the median men's salary is higher than the median women's salary, for most jobs. Compliance officers have one of the middle percentage increases for men's salary, with the increase for the men's median salary over the women's median salary in this job higher than that for 43% of other jobs.

15%0%20%40%60%80%100%

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Race/Origin
Race and origin of compliance officers

The representation of minority and foreign-born workers is quite different between careers, and the relative pay of those workers also varies significantly between careers. The percentage of minority compliance officers falls in about the middle of all careers' percentages. There is a smaller percentage of foreign-born workers in this career than in most other careers.

Race/origin of compliance officers
White (77% )
Black (11% )
Asian (6% )
Multiracial (2% )
Other (2% )
Hispanic (1% )
American Indian (1% )
Pacific Islander (0% )
Context: Representation of minorities in the workforce
21%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Context: Representation of foreign-born workers
10%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Distribution: Salaries for compliance officers by race/origin

For some careers, there is a pay disparity depending on race or origin, though this is not prevalent. We calculate standard errors for all of our calculations, and when the error is high we do not show results. Therefore, for some jobs will have omitted race/origin categories.

$50K$54K$58K$60K$60K$66K$69K$74K$0$50K$100K$150KHispanicOtherMultiracialBlackAmerican IndianWhitePacific IslanderAsian
Distribution: Salaries for compliance officers by nativity
$64K$73K$0$50K$100K$150KAll native citizensAll foreign-born

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Pathways to this career
Education requirements and salary
Education attained by compliance officers

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), compliance officers typically hold a bachelor's degree.

Sometimes the typical education identified by the BLS differs a bit from the reality of the how much education current workers actually have. The donut shows the education level held by people currently working as compliance officers as reported in responses to the American Community Survey. Following, we investigate whether education level influences salary for compliance officers.

Education attained by compliance officers
None
High School
Some College
Associate's Degree
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Professional Deg/Doct
Doctorate
Distribution: Salary by education level

What level of education is truly needed for compliance officers? Below we see the distribution of compliance officers salaries based on the education attained. These comparisons are based on all survey responses by those who identified themselves as compliance officers, and are not intended as a statistical analysis of salary differences that would correct for non-educational factors that could contribute to high or low earnings.

$47K$49K$54K$56K$68K$79K$84K$93K$0$50K$100K$150K$200KNone (1%)High School (8%)Some College (17%)Associate's Degree (9%)Bachelor's Degree (40%)Master's Degree (17%)Professional Deg/Doct (5%)Doctorate (2%)
Bachelor's degree pathways
College majors held by compliance officers

This table shows the college majors held by people working as compliance officers. Select any degree to see detailed information. We are able to connect careers to degrees using the American Community Survey (ACS), and their degrees are defined a little differently from our programs, which are based on standard CIP classifications. Therefore, selecting some degrees will lead to a selection of CIP-level programs from which to choose.

If you see "**" before the name of a degree/program, that means this field is one that the Department of Education believes is preparatory for this career. However, you can see from this list that those recommendations are far from your only path to this job!

Degree
Select any title to learn more about that degree
Percentage of Compliance officers with this degree
Salary for all majors
Salary distribution (across jobs). Showing 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
Final education level of all people with this major
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Gender of people this bachelor's degree
Men
Women
4.8%
$0$200K$53K
4.8%
$0$200K$63K
4.2%
$0$200K$63K
3.8%
$0$200K$67K
3.6%
$0$200K$72K
3.0%
$0$200K$73K
2.4%
$0$200K$60K
2.2%
$0$200K$56K
2.2%
$0$200K$73K
2.2%
$0$200K$56K
2.0%
$0$200K$60K
1.8%
$0$200K$54K
1.5%
$0$200K$51K
1.2%
$0$200K$70K
1.1%
$0$200K$55K
1.1%
$0$200K$80K
The link between degrees and careers
The link between degrees and careers

With the following "sankey" diagram, you can follow the top ten bachelor's degrees held by people working as compliance officers, and then, in turn, you can see the 10 occupations that hire the most of each degree's graduates. This visualization links fields of studies and careers, suggesting both similar careers and options for degrees. The full list of bachelor's degrees held by compliance officers given in the previous section reminds us that there are many paths to these careers beyond what we can summarize here.

This job
Top 10 majors
Each major's top ten jobs
Managers (specialized areas)Accountants and auditorsFirst-line supervisors of retail sales workersFinancial managersWholesale and manufacturing sales representativesChief executives and legislatorsSecretaries and administrative assistantsHuman resources workersFirst-line supervisors of non-retail sales workersMarketing and sales managersCounselorsSocial workersElementary and middle school teachersPsychologistsPostsecondary teachersLawyers, judges, and magistratesPhysicians and surgeonsEducation administratorsDentistsRegistered nursesPhysical scientists (specialized areas)Epidemiologists and Medical/Life ScientistsClinical laboratory technologists and techniciansPharmacistsRetail salespersonsManagement analystsBookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerksFirst-line supervisors of office and administrative support workersFinancial analystsPolice officersProbation officers and correctional treatment specialistsSecurity Guards and Gaming Surveillance OfficersBailiffs, correctional officers, and jailersDetectives and criminal investigatorsFirst-Line Supervisors of Police and DetectivesPersonal financial advisorsSecurities, commodities, and financial services sales agentsCredit counselors and loan officersSecondary school teachersEditorsWriters and authorsBusiness Management andAdministrationPsychologyBiologyGeneral BusinessPolitical Science andGovernmentAccountingCriminal Justice and FireProtectionFinanceEconomicsEnglish Language andLiteratureAll other degrees
Switching Careers
Most common new jobs
The most common next careers for compliance officers

What jobs will most compliance officers hold next year?

The data in this chart comes from person interviews for the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey. The survey interviews households eight times over a two-year period, allowing us a glimpse into how people move from job to job. You can see more details from the results of the survey in our last tab in this section, and you can read about our methodology in our source descriptions.

Here we see all of the jobs that at least 1% of compliance officers reported holding in their second year's survey. Is your future job on this list?

Compliance officersManagers (specialized areas)Accountants and auditorsInspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighersFirst-line supervisors of office and administrative support workersSecretaries and administrative assistantsManagement analystsFirst-line supervisors of non-retail sales workersOffice and administrative support workersGeneral office clerksFinancial analystsLawyers, judges, and magistrates
Lateral career moves
Lateral job transitions for compliance officers

A lateral career transition is a move to a job with similar pay and responsibilities. A move to such a job can offer a change of pace without an increase in stress or a decrease in pay. The following table simply identifies all 6 jobs which were held by at least 1% of survey respondents before working as compliance officers as well as 1% of respondents after working as compliance officers. Select a row to investigate the job's full description and determine if it truly offers an opportunity for a lateral transition.

Lateral-move careers for compliance officers
Annual openings
How many openings are expected each year?
Salary
Salary distribution for people in this occupation. Range is 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Men
Women
General office clerks
356,600
$0$200K$33K
First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers
153,100
$0$200K$48K
Accountants and auditors
143,000
$0$200K$60K
Management analysts
87,200
$0$200K$76K
Managers (specialized areas)
84,000
$0$200K$72K
Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers
52,700
$0$200K$39K
Full prior and next career listings
Prior and next careers for compliance officers: full listings

What do people typically do before and after they work as compliance officers? Here are the full lists of all jobs that at least 1% of compliance officers surveyed reported as holding a year earlier or later.

Choose which type of transition to view
Prior jobs
Next jobs
Prior careers for compliance officers
Annual openings
How many openings are expected each year?
Salary
Salary distribution for people in this occupation. Range is 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Men
Women
Percentage Transitioning
What percentage worked in this job the previous year?
General office clerks
356,600
$0$200K$33K
1.3%
First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers
153,100
$0$200K$48K
1.2%
Accountants and auditors
143,000
$0$200K$60K
1.7%
Business operations specialists
104,900
$0$200K
1.4%
Management analysts
87,200
$0$200K$76K
1.0%
Managers (specialized areas)
84,000
$0$200K$72K
6.3%
Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers
52,700
$0$200K$39K
2.8%
Claims adjusters and insurance appraisers
26,100
$0$200K$52K
1.5%
Compliance officers
26,000
$0$200K$65K
35.4%
Environmental scientists and geoscientists
13,900
$0$200K$70K
1.5%
Construction and building inspectors
12,800
$0$200K$53K
1.2%
Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations (specialized areas)
11,400
$0$200K$54K
2.1%
No occupation
4.0%
Trends in employment
Salary trends
Distribution and trends: Salaries for compliance officers
Choose actual dollars or inflation-adjusted dollars to view
Adjusted for inflation
Historic dollars

In 2018, the median (middle) salary for compliance officers was higher than 76% of all other jobs' middle salaries. This graphic shows how the salary distribution (adjusted for inflation) has changed for this job over recent years. The gray line, as a comparison, shows the median salary of all US workers.

This job's median $69KAll jobs' median $39K$63K$38K200420052006200720082009201020112012201320142015201620172018$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100K$120K
Projected versus actual employment
Exploring actual employment trends versus projected trends

Currently, jobs for compliance officers are anticipated to grow by 8% over the next decade, which is faster growth than is predicted for 49% of other jobs.

The projected employment for compliance officers is the best guess created by talented economists and statisticians at the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). However, as you look through several careers you'll notice that the projections are heavily influenced by past performance and may miss current trends. No one can tell the future, and as new information and better techniques are developed, actual counts and future projections may change. Here's a glimpse at the actual counts versus the projections over time.

20002010202020300100,000200,000300,000400,000
Employment counts
Actual measured employment
BLS 10-year predictions
Variation by state
Employment
State-by-state employment numbers

Some careers tend to be centered in specific parts of the country. For example, most jobs in fashion are in New York or California. Let's see if your dream job is easy to find in your dream location! We have a few choices for viewing the data that can help you get a full employment picture.

Job density versus job count

Which states hire the most compliance officers? We wonder if that's a fair question since states come in all sizes, so instead let's start with the question of which states have the highest density of people working as compliance officers. You can choose to view the number of jobs per state if you prefer.

BLS vs ACS data

This map defaults to employment information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which provides job totals carefully compiled for accuracy and with a primary focus on how employers describe their workers. The BLS job totals do not count self-employed workers. We've also compiled totals using the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) which are based on how workers describe themselves. Sometimes ACS results are quite a bit different from the employer-based BLS data.

Choose the metric to review
Jobs per 1000 working
Number of jobs
Use this data source
BLS
Number of Compliance Officers per 1,000 workers (BLS)
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
0.02.04.06.08.0
Salary
Salaries by state
Let's get a feel for where compliance officers earn the highest salaries. There are several choices for which data we consider and how we view that data, and each can lead to different conclusions, so please read on...
Median salary versus state ratio

We use two methods to compare salaries across states:

  • In-state comparisons: the ratio of median (middle) salaries for compliance officers compared to the median salary for all people working in each state, or
  • Median salary: the unaltered median salaries for compliance officers.

We hope the ratio allows perspective about how salaries may compare to the regional cost-of-living.

BLS vs ACS data

We have two sources for statewide salary information with important distinctions. The BLS data is created by surveying companies, missing individuals who are self-employed or work for smaller companies. The ACS data is compiled from multi-faceted household surveys and may reflect the inconsistencies that people may have in reporting information.

Choose the metric to review
In-state comparisions
Median salary
Use this data source
BLS
Median salary ratio: Compliance Officers to all workers (BLS)
The darkest shading corresponds to states in which compliance officers earn the highest salary when compared to other jobs in the state. We think this ratio might be a better indicator than the actual salary for your buying power as a state resident.
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
0.00.51.01.52.0
Compare to similar jobs

If this job interests you, then use the dots below to find other jobs you might like. The dots closer to the top represent jobs that are like Compliance officers (shown with a blue star). Look for the dots to the right to find the best salaries! (We pulled salary data from BLS, and they give a top salary value of just over $200K to protect privacy, so our graph would go much higher if the salaries were not top coded.)

How should the career similarity be computed

There are a number of ways to measure the similarity of jobs, here are a few we provide:

  • Interests: Also known as a Holland Code - Are you a thinker? A helper? What fits your personality?
  • Environment: Are there hazards? Will you be comfortable? Will it be stressful?
  • Knowledge: What do you need to know the most about?
  • Physical Abilities: Do you need to especially strong or coordinated?
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