Know Your Worth, Salaries

The Top 10 Most Underpaid Jobs in America

We hear it all the time: “I should be making more.” It’s easy to dismiss this as nothing more than the grumblings of a frustrated worker, but according to new salary data from Glassdoor, there’s much more truth behind this complaint than you might imagine. According to information from our Know Your Worth™ personalized salary estimator, the average U.S. employee could be earning $7,528, or 13.3 percent, more per year than his or her current annual base salary.

As if that wasn’t surprising enough, some people in specific roles are missing out on even more money. If you are in one of these 25 underpaid positions, don’t get angry — get paid fairly! Nothing shows confidence quite like applying for a new, higher-paying job or renegotiating your current salary. Whichever you choose to do, here’s all the information you need to know your worth!

1. Emergency Medical Technician

Potential Salary Growth: 21.9% or $7,771

Current Median Base Salary: $27,636

Current Market Value: $35,407

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2. Certified Nursing Assistant

Potential Salary Growth: 21.3% or $6,505

Current Median Base Salary: $24,000

Current Market Value: $30,505

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3. Research Assistant

Potential Salary Growth: 20.9% or $7,935

Current Median Base Salary: $30,000

Current Market Value: $37,935

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4. Java Developer

Potential Salary Growth: 17.7% or $16,792

Current Median Base Salary: $78,000

Current Market Value: $94,792

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5. Pharmacist

Potential Salary Growth: 16.5% or $23,261

Current Median Base Salary: $118,000

Current Market Value: $141,261

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6. Web Designer

Potential Salary Growth: 15.5% or $9,508

Current Median Base Salary: $52,000

Current Market Value: $61,508

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7. Software Engineer

Potential Salary Growth: 15.2% or $17,943

Current Median Base Salary: $100,000

Current Market Value: $117,943

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8. Medical Assistant

Potential Salary Growth: 15.1% or $5,320

Current Median Base Salary: $30,000

Current Market Value: $35,320

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9. Marketing Manager

Potential Salary Growth: 15.0% or $14,107

Current Median Base Salary: $80,000

Current Market Value: $94,107

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10. Communications Manager

Potential Salary Growth: 14.8% or $13,334

Current Median Base Salary: $76,498

Current Market Value: $89,831

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To see the top 25 most underpaid positions in their entirety, visit here.

You might be wondering: What do I do next? Consider taking the following steps:

  • Learn Your Worth: Glassdoor’s Know Your Worth tool can provide you with a free, personalized salary estimate to give you a customized appraisal of what you should be making based on your job title, location, years of experience and more.
  • Negotiate: With an estimate from Know Your Worth, you can enter into negotiations with proof of what you deserve to be making, which makes for a much more persuasive case in the eyes of your employer. Not sure how to start the conversation? Read here.
  • Consider a New Job: Research shows that changing jobs is more likely to lead to an increase in salary, so if your employer won’t budge on pay, finding a new job may be the solution.  
  • Weigh Your Choices: Of course, salary isn’t the only thing that matters in your job search — in fact, Glassdoor research has shown that things like a company’s culture and values, career opportunities and senior leadership are even more important than a paycheck when it comes to career satisfaction. So if you love your current job, decide whether it’s worth staying, even if it means a lower salary.

It might be disheartening to find out that you’re underpaid, but our purpose in sharing this information is to empower you. When you know how much you could be making, you’re able to make more informed decisions about your career — so arm yourself with this information, and then take action.

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