Biotech Scientist Salary - How Much Biotechs Make Per Year

Biotechnology, a diverse industry, has many career opportunities as one of the largest and most opportune fields to be in today. With the scientific workforce expanding, it’s no surprise that so many people in the current job market are considering biotech careers. When weighing options for a new job in this industry, one of the biggest questions is how much do biotechs make? There are several factors that determine biotech average salary and fair compensation. Average rate can depend on education, experience, certifications and more. Still, there are many lucrative options within this promising industry. In this resource, we guide you through the many types of biotechnology, benefits of the industry, and average biotechnologist salary. 

What is Biotechnology?

Biotechnology is a branch of life science where biology and technology meet as one. Ranging from environmental to clinical research, biotech utilizes living organic systems with technology to develop and create new products. With varying career paths, research associates can be both in the lab with cells and chemicals, as well as in the field working with soil, plants, and animals. Biotechnology has been at the helm of scientific discoveries that have changed many aspects of everyday life. While research and development career paths are popular, there are many ways to establish a rewarding career in biotech. In this unique industry, many positions utilize disciplines such as pharmacology, ecology, genetics, microbiology, biochemistry and so many more. From food production to drug development, chemists, biologists, engineers, and many others can pursue several career options within biotechnology.

Types of Biotechnological Work

Since biotechnology encompasses a wide range of specializations, it is often divided into several types or branches. Although there are more branches of biotech, listed below are the 4 main types of biotechnology:

Medical Biotechnology

In this branch also known as “red biotechnology,” medical biotech deals with advances in medicine through research and development. By utilizing live cells and organisms, a medical biotechnologist can step foot into careers dealing with genetics, immunology, stem cell research and engineering. With applications in clinical and pharmaceutical research, the possibilities in this field are open to anyone interested in medical biotechnology. Some career paths involve biochemistry, molecular biology, or engineering. Careers as a Biological Technician, Research Associate, and Clinical Laboratory Technician have an average median salary ranging from $48,140 to $57,800 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The average median salary for a Biomedical Engineer and Medical Scientist ranges from $95,310 to $97,410, compensation depending on factors like education and experience. In treating and preventing diseases, medical biotechnology provides plenty of opportunity for those wanting to make a difference in scientific and medicinal development.

Industrial Biotechnology

Otherwise known as “white biotechnology,” the industrial type of biotech deals with the development of new materials and goods from studying enzymes and microorganisms. Industrial biotech aims to improve and develop sustainable manufacturing processes. Including biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, this branch’s work can apply to industries like textiles, food, raw materials, and others. Some career paths and average median salaries range from $74,177 to $79,760 for job titles such as Operations Industrial Engineer and Materials Scientist. For management in this industry, an Industrial Production Manager’s average median salary was $103,150 in 2021. From operations to management, industrial biotechnology offers promising positions to those with a background in biochemistry, engineering, or similar disciplines. As a pioneer of sustainability, careers in industrial biotech will help revolutionize how we manufacture and produce renewable sources.

Environmental Biotechnology

Environmental or “green biotechnology” is the branch of biotech that studies environmental systems in an effort to monitor, prevent, and address problems within these systems. Many specializations of green biotechnology target pollution, renewable energy sources, industrial waste management, and bioremediation. Biochemists, microbiologists, ecologists, and others within this job market can find success here. As this branch of biotechnology expands, an environmental biotechnologist can find themselves as a biochemist, research associate, chemical technician, soil or plant scientist. As a result, researchers her can change the outlook of pollution, climate change, and other environmental impacts. An environmental biotechnologist’s average median salaries can range from $48,990 to $79,760. With a passion for remediation and conservation, a biotechnologist can find rewarding careers in this branch of biotech.

Agricultural Biotechnology

Similar to environmental biotech, agricultural biotechnology works to modify and improve traditional agricultural techniques using plants, animals, and microorganisms. This branch of biotech is also known as “yellow biotechnology.” In this type of biotech, agricultural research can deal with genetically engineered crops as well as the development of new medicines. An agricultural biotechnologist in the job market can find career options in plant breeding, pathology, molecular biology, genetics and more beyond this. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, professionals such as Plant and Food Scientists had a compensation range of $66,750 to $74,160 for average median salaries in 2021. Those seeking to improve and develop the agricultural industry can make a meaningful impact through the work done in yellow biotechnology.

Average Salary for Biotech Jobs

With the biotechnology industry expanding and the demand for professionals increasing, many can find successful positions in biotech. While average salary range can vary depending on factors like education and experience, here we provide a general compensation overview of average median biotech salaries.

  • Chemical Technicians – Average Median Salary $48,990
  • Biomedical Technician – Average Median Salary $59,095
  • Conservation Scientist – Average Median Salary $63,750
  • Soil and Plant Scientist – Average Median Salary $66,750
  • Biomanufacturing Specialist – Average Median Salary $72,593
  • Agricultural and Food Scientist – Average Median Salary $74,160
  • Epidemiologist – Average Median Salary $78,830
  • Microbiologist- Average Median Salary $79,260
  • Chemists – Average Median Salary $79,760
  • Process Development Scientist – Average Median Salary $87,037
  • Biotechnology Research Scientist – Average Median Salary $93,119
  • Medical Scientist – Average Median Salary $95,310
  • Biochemist – Average Median Salary $102,270

Ready for a career in biotech? Look at job openings here!

What Are the Benefits of Working in Biotechnology?

The benefits of working in biotech are endless. Biotech is a fast-paced industry that’s rapidly growing. As needs in science and medicine change, the biotech environment follows suit. In this ever-evolving field, biotech offers many great career benefits to professionals who work in it. In joining a team that’s becoming a leader in technology and science here is a quick look at some of the benefits of working in biotechnology:

Rewarding Career

With biotechnology offering a wide array of career options to choose from, individuals are guaranteed to find a role that is fulfilling and interesting. A meaningful career awaits those who are ready to work with teams that make advancements and impacts on the modern world. Whether it’s food, pharmacy, cosmetic, industrial, or clinical, an individual’s work makes a difference.

Job Security

The biotechnology industry is constantly expanding roles, techniques, and technologies. As such, the demand for life science professionals in the industry is increasing in the coming decade. Over the last five years, the biotechnology industry saw a growth of 5% in employed professionals. With many biotech career paths projected for employment growth well over 7 percent, securing a job in biotech is a major benefit to this industry.

Opportunities for Advancement

One of the greatest benefits of working in biotechnology is the opportunity for advancement. Starting at ground level and working your way up is achievable in this industry that oversees many disciplines. As a result, lateral or vertical career moves can be more transparent and attainable than other industries. By solving one problem and addressing the next, there is always something new to learn and gain experience from. This industry is great for those who are eager to be at the head of discovery, build a repertoire of skills, and advance knowledge on both a personal and global scale.

Ways to Improve Your Earning Potential in Biotech

While already a great career path, there are ways to improve your biotech salary earning potential. Biotechnology positions often requires years of experience, education, certifications, and skills for leveraging higher compensation. Although a bachelor’s degree is required at minimum for most jobs, pursuing a life science related master’s or doctorate can unlock even more opportunities for these degree holders. Becoming a specialist in your chosen field is one of the easiest ways to leverage higher rates of pay. One path in doing so, is pursuing certifications related to one’s field and frequently desired in job descriptions. Certifications within specializations help broaden skill sets and develop deeper understandings of highly sought-after skills. No matter where you begin, there is always a way to improve and easily increase biotech salary in this industry. Learn more about education and other requirements for biotech careers here.

What Are the Future Prospects for Biotechnology Careers?

As scientific discoveries continue to expand, many biotechnology careers are predicted to increase over the coming years. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for careers like Biomedical Engineers is projected to grow 10 percent in the next 10 years. Employment of Biological Technicians and microbiologists is projected to grow 9 percent. Growth driven by new discoveries and breakthroughs in technology create an environment perfect for those who thrive on improvement and expansion. In the years to come, the increase in demand for specialized roles offer bright prospects for the future of biotechnology careers.

What Are the Top Biotech Companies to Work For?

When choosing which biotech company to work for, there are some factors to consider. First, think about ideal location, then weigh benefits, compensation, culture, and general job satisfaction. Comparing companies and the job positions they offer is one of the best ways to determine the right opportunity for you. The top biotech companies can be found all around California in biotech hotbeds like San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange County, and the San Francisco Bay Area. In California’s job market, some of the best biotech companies to work for are Gilead Sciences, Quidel, Amgen, Fate Therapeutics, Illumina, and of course, so many more.

Get Your Start in Biotechnology With BioPhase Solutions

All in all, biotechnology is one of the best industries in the market to broaden your opportunities and reach career goals. As we’ve seen, biotechnology offers professionals a comprehensive range of careers. These enriching career options create profound impacts to science, medicine, engineering, manufacturing, agriculture and more. Since average biotech scientist salary range can be anywhere from $50,000 to six figures, this industry provides numerous opportunities for advancement in knowledge and compensation. At BioPhase Solutions Inc., we specialize in placing candidates in California’s top pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device companies. Some of the benefits of working with a biotech recruiter include putting your skills and career goals first. Our biotech recruiters work tirelessly to find you the right opportunities with the right companies. Achieve your goals and start your career in biotech by contacting us today!