Quality Progress - December 2017 - 28
2017 QP Salary Survey
TA B L E 5
Sample career ladder
Table 5 includes results for: x Full-time employees, Part-time employees, x U.S. employees,
Canadian employees, International employees
This table shows a reasonably common sample career path for a quality professional.
For example, "Mary Sue" may be an analyst early in her career. It may even be her ﬁrst job, although the
average person holding that title has worked in the quality profession for 10.2 years.
She may become a quality engineer. That job is more likely to require a bachelor's degree (72.9% vs. 68%,
column 6). On average, it involves a pay increase (column 3). And it is considerably more likely to require at
least one ASQ certiﬁcation (22.1% vs. 13.9%).
Columns 1-3 are just what they seem: average age, years in quality and salary for the job title.
Column 4 shows the percentage of respondents who changed employers in making this exact title change
(manager to director, for example).
In column 4, the transition for analysts is from any title. That is, the percentage shown is for all holders of the
title analyst, no matter what their prior status was.
Column 5 shows the percentage of respondents holding the title in 2016 who said that at least one ASQ
certiﬁcation was required to enter or stay in the position.
Column 6 shows the percentage of respondents holding the title in 2016 who said that at least a bachelor's
degree was required to enter or stay in the position.
Note: All sections printed
in this issue of QP are also
available in the online
report in PDF format at
continued from page 25
for a quality engineer is $85,974-more
than $10,000 higher than the $74,852
earned by the average analyst (see Table 3
in section 1, p. 34). There's some likelihood that she got herself certified to take
this step up the ladder because 22.1% of
quality engineers told us in 2016 that their
organization required at least one ASQ
certification to be in that position.
So, Mary Sue keeps moving up, from
quality engineer to manager, and from
there to director. Although her certification might relate to this high-level position,
it's likely that her formal education helped
her get the job because 76% of directors
told us their employers required at least
a bachelor's degree to take the position.
Even more likely is that her latest promotion was the result of having stuck with
the quality profession for quite a while
because directors, on average, have
December 2017 ❘ qualityprogress.com
been working in the quality field for 19.5 years. And as the salary column
shows, Mary Sue is now receiving pretty good financial rewards for her
years of learning and experience.
The data in this year's salary report can help you design your own
career ladder. You'll get considerable help from the in-depth analysis
from earlier reports, in which we looked closely at the value of ASQ
certifications, Six Sigma training, formal education and other factors that
hiring managers look for when considering new hires and candidates for
Onward and upward!
Max Christian Hansen is a management consultant
based in Sacramento, CA. He has helped auto parts
manufacturers with their ﬁrst implementations of
statistical process control and has lectured on data
quality at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
(MIT) in Cambridge. Hansen has an MBA from MIT's
Sloan School of Management.