Income and benefits
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for electrical engineers in the United States was $100,830 in 2020. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $64,870, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $159,520.
The top paying industry was the research and development in the physical, engineering, and life sciences, with a median annual salary of $116,050. This is followed by semiconductor and other electronic component manufacturing ($107,680), navigational, measuring, electromedical, and control instruments manufacturing ($104,480), electric power generation, transmission and distribution ($102,510) and then, finally, engineering services ($94,440).
Autonomy and Flexibility
Generally speaking, electrical engineers will have high levels autonomy. They are often very senior team members in projects and therefore have control over plenty of decisions. Furthermore, as electrical engineers progress through their careers, their autonomy will increase further as they gather more experience, knowledge and responsibility.
Locations and commute
According to Zippia, the best states to be an electrical engineer, based on average annual salary and number of job opportunities, are:
- Washington, where the average annual salary is $96,650
- Massachusetts, where the average annual salary is $94,046
- Wyoming, where the average annual salary is $83,410
- Vermont, where the average annual salary is $90,340
- New Mexico, where the average annual salary is $84,809
The worst states to be an electrical engineer, according to Zippia, are Indiana, Nebraska, West Virginia, South Dakota and Arkansas.
The largest employer of electrical engineers in the United States was engineering services, which hired 20% of all electrical engineers in 2019. 9% of electrical engineers were employed by the electrical power generation, transmission and distribution industry. A further 7% by navigational, measuring, electromedical and control instrument manufacturing, 5% by research and development in the physical, engineering and life sciences industry and a final 4% by the semiconductor and other electronic component manufacturing industry.
Electrical engineers may work in a field or in a lab setting. While the work of an electrical engineer requires mental concentration, it is not generally physically intensive. Qualified electrical engineers will have work opportunities in the public and private sectors and usually earn an above-average income.