Communication Specialist Salary

By Henry Steele - January 8, 2018
Reading Time: 12 minutes
Reading Time: 12 minutes

The following article discusses the career path of Communication Specialist. Learn about how to become one, education requirements, job duties, traits and qualities, national salary outlook as well as top national employers of Communication Specialists.

Job Duties

Communications specialists manage all internal and external communications of the business. Internally, this includes job descriptions, memos, and managerial notes. Externally, this includes marketing materials, press released, online content, and so on. The communications specialists also coordinates marketing and media events, press conferences, and information employee meetings, while at the same time managing online content and answering any questions others may have. They mainly work in offices during regular business hours, but some travel and regular overtime is required as they must meet deadlines and often have to deal with a crisis situation.

Other job duties of a communication specialist are:

  • To design innovative and effective communication materials and copy, using modern electronic communication where possible
  • To produce internal and external newsletters
  • To manage entire communication campaigns, both internally and externally

Where We Work

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 259,600 public relations specialists in 2016, a profession closely related to that of communication specialist. The largest employers of these professionals were:

  • Advertising, public relations, and related services: 15%
  • Educational services; state, local, and private: 11%
  • Business, professional, labor, political, and similar organizations: 9%
  • Government: 9%

How to Become

Usually, a communications specialist will be expected to have a bachelor’s degree in marketing, bachelors degree in communications, journalism, or a related field. They must also have a lot of experience using Microsoft Office and some are also required to have web design knowledge. Communication specialists must be trained in conveying messages using different mediums, while also being able to deal with urgent and crisis situations.

Education Requirements

A bachelor’s degree in business, English, communications, journalism, or public relations is usually required. These programs ensure students create a work portfolio that demonstrates they are strong communicators. Additionally, many have to complete an internship as part of their degree, which demonstrates real world experience. It is also quite common for communication specialists to have taken part in extracurricular or volunteer opportunities such as running the school newspaper. See 10 Best Online Communications Degree programs.

Traits & Qualities

The most effective communication specialists have the following traits to some degree or other:

  • Strong interpersonal skills, being able to convey messages in a calm and effective manner, regardless of the audience and the type of message that has to be delivered
  • Great organizational skills, as communications specialists have to work under a great deal of pressure, managing deadlines and crisis situations. This means they have to be able to prioritize as well and have strong time management skills.
  • Excellent problem solvers, being able to “talk their way out of anything”. A communications specialist must be able to deal with sensitive issues in a confident manner and adapt their communication style to fit their audience.
  • Strong speaking skills, as they often have to engage in public speaking events on behalf of their employer. They must be able to properly represent their organization, therefore.
  • Excellent writing skills, ensuring communications are written in a way that everyone can understand, free from grammatical and spelling errors.

Minimum Education

Bachelor’s Degree

National Salary

The national average salary estimate for Communication Specialist was $43,213. This number is estimated from over 916,724 employees, users past and present job advertisements from Indeed.com. This equates to an hourly salary of $22.51 and monthly of $3,601.

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$14,000

$108,000

Salary Distribution

Salary by State

The following section lists Communication Specialist salaries in each state around the country. The figures are based on the total number of job postings through Indeed.com. For example, Alaska had the largest quoted salary of $81,831 while Ohio had the smallest quoted salary of $22,868.

AlaskaIowaMontanaRhode Island
AlabamaIllinoisNorth CarolinaSouth Carolina
ArkansasIndianaNorth DakotaSouth Dakota
ArizonaKansasNebraskaTennessee
CaliforniaKentuckyNew JerseyTexas
ColoradoLouisianaNew MexicoUtah
ConnecticutMassachusettsNevadaVirginia
DCMarylandNew YorkVermont
DelawareMichiganOhioWashington
FloridaMinnesotaOklahomaWisconsin
GeorgiaMissouriOregonWest Virginia
HawaiiMississippiPennsylvaniaWyoming
Alaska$81,831Rank: 1st
The average salary ranks 1st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and University of Alaska.

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$15,000

$201,000

Salary Distribution
Alabama$39,221Rank: 30th
The average salary ranks 30th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Auburn University, University of Alabama, and DSM Staff Network.

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$14,000

$79,000

Salary Distribution
Arkansas$36,325Rank: 34th
The average salary ranks 34th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Arkansas, Arkansas Department of Health, and Cox Communications Inc..

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$14,000

$76,000

Salary Distribution
Arizona$27,552Rank: 44th
The average salary ranks 44th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like PHI AIR MEDICAL, Arizona State University, University of Arizona, and DSM Staff Network.

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$7.25

$31.90

Salary Distribution
California$53,798Rank: 10th
The average salary ranks 10th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The ProSource Group, Zero Energy Co., At-Tech, and LanceSoft Inc.

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$7.25

$66.00

Salary Distribution
Colorado$53,084Rank: 11th
The average salary ranks 11th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CITY OF BOULDER, City and County of Denver, City of Boulder, CO, and Denver Public Schools.

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$17,000

$109,000

Salary Distribution
Connecticut$55,411Rank: 8th
The average salary ranks 8th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Randstad Professionals and Randstad.

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$9.80

$57.80

Salary Distribution
DC$75,521Rank: 2nd
The average salary ranks 2nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like USAJOBS, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Transportation, and U.S. Government.

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$19,000

$168,000

Salary Distribution
Delaware$49,152Rank: 12th
The average salary ranks 12th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like nextSource and Informatic Technologies Inc.

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$7.25

$64.75

Salary Distribution
Florida$39,464Rank: 28th
The average salary ranks 28th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Apex Systems, Creative Circle, Polk County RPO, and University of Florida.

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$14,000

$100,000

Salary Distribution
Georgia$56,664Rank: 7th
The average salary ranks 7th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services, The Creative Group, and Robert Half The Creative Group.

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$14,000

$133,000

Salary Distribution
Hawaii$48,432Rank: 14th
The average salary ranks 14th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like U.S. Army and ALTRES Office.

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$14,000

$103,000

Salary Distribution
Iowa$40,589Rank: 27th
The average salary ranks 27th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Northern Iowa, State of Iowa, The University of Iowa, and Manpower.

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$14,000

$88,000

Salary Distribution
Illinois$59,165Rank: 3rd
The average salary ranks 3rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like TechInMotion, Godfrey Personnel, Inc., SMDJ, and Request Technology.

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$21,000

$116,000

Salary Distribution
Indiana$41,980Rank: 22nd
The average salary ranks 22nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Notre Dame, State of Indiana, The Creative Group, and Unique Integrated Communications, Inc..

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$14,000

$89,000

Salary Distribution
Kansas$30,508Rank: 40th
The average salary ranks 40th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like City of Lenexa, Stormont-Vail Healthcare, University of Kansas, and Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office – Shawnee County Emergency Communications Center.

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$7.25

$31.45

Salary Distribution
Kentucky$38,208Rank: 33rd
The average salary ranks 33rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Select Source International, Capcity Communications, U.S. Army, and Louisville Metro Government.

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$7.25

$47.55

Salary Distribution
Louisiana$38,304Rank: 32nd
The average salary ranks 32nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Topp Knotch Personnel, DSM Staff Network, State of Louisiana, and Cox Communications Inc..

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$7.25

$51.20

Salary Distribution
Massachusetts$58,636Rank: 4th
The average salary ranks 4th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like weinberg and Associates, Inc., Hire Talent, Manpower, and Informatic Technologies Inc.

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$7.30

$69.70

Salary Distribution
Maryland$58,569Rank: 5th
The average salary ranks 5th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like U.S. Department of Commerce, Food and Drug Administration, Department of Health and Human Services, and Prince George’s County Public Schools.

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$14,000

$137,000

Salary Distribution
Michigan$31,593Rank: 39th
The average salary ranks 39th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Entergy, The University of Michigan, Ferris State University, and Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi.

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$14,000

$76,000

Salary Distribution
Minnesota$43,008Rank: 20th
The average salary ranks 20th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Select Source International, Metropolitan Airports Commission, Creative Circle, and Select Source International Pvt Ltd.

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$7.35

$45.45

Salary Distribution
Missouri$41,049Rank: 25th
The average salary ranks 25th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like MU Health Care, Select Source International, Experis, and Missouri State University.

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$7.25

$45.85

Salary Distribution
Mississippi$41,545Rank: 24th
The average salary ranks 24th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like DSM Staff Network.

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$14,000

$85,000

Salary Distribution
Montana$26,976Rank: 45th
The average salary ranks 45th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Kalispell Chamber of Commerce and Community Medical Center.

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$7.25

$23.35

Salary Distribution
North Carolina$44,001Rank: 18th
The average salary ranks 18th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Request Technology, City Of Raleigh, The Creative Group, and North Carolina State University.

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$14,000

$90,000

Salary Distribution
North Dakota$40,626Rank: 26th
The average salary ranks 26th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of North Dakota and Lake Region Law Enforcement Center.

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$17,000

$74,000

Salary Distribution
Nebraska$29,356Rank: 41st
The average salary ranks 41st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Nebraska Medical Center, University of Nebraska at Omaha, University of Nebraska, and Air Methods Communications.

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$7.25

$27.10

Salary Distribution
New Jersey$55,276Rank: 9th
The average salary ranks 9th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Allergan, Pharmaceuticals, The Creative Group, and Biogensys.

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$8.70

$60.35

Salary Distribution
New Mexico$41,859Rank: 23rd
The average salary ranks 23rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Los Alamos National Laboratory and City of Albuquerque.

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$14,000

$103,000

Salary Distribution
Nevada$34,156Rank: 37th
The average salary ranks 37th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority.

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$7.25

$37.45

Salary Distribution
New York$47,270Rank: 16th
The average salary ranks 16th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The Creative Group, Toy Industry Association, Inc., New York City Department of Education, and The Forum Group.

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$14,000

$112,000

Salary Distribution
Ohio$22,868Rank: 48th
The average salary ranks 48th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like U.S. Air Force, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Ohio University, and U.S. Army Reserve.

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$14,000

$57,000

Salary Distribution
Oklahoma$26,035Rank: 46th
The average salary ranks 46th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Chandler Police Department, Fidelis Secure Care, Oklahoma State University, and Cox Communications Inc..

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$7.25

$35.05

Salary Distribution
Oregon$39,398Rank: 29th
The average salary ranks 29th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Oregon Health Sciences University, University of Oregon, City of Albany, OR, and Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon Ministries Corporation.

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$7.25

$42.85

Salary Distribution
Pennsylvania$35,784Rank: 35th
The average salary ranks 35th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Cyberthink Inc., Creative Circle, Siemens Healthcare, and PeopleShare.

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$14,000

$86,000

Salary Distribution
Rhode Island$45,922Rank: 17th
The average salary ranks 17th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Berean Group International Inc..

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$14,000

$155,000

Salary Distribution
South Carolina$34,268Rank: 36th
The average salary ranks 36th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Medical University of South Carolina, CHARLESTON COUNTY AVIATION, DSM Staff Network, and University of South Carolina.

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$14,000

$67,000

Salary Distribution
South Dakota$28,204Rank: 43rd
The average salary ranks 43rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like South Dakota State Government and Spherion.

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$7.30

$24.60

Salary Distribution
Tennessee$47,366Rank: 15th
The average salary ranks 15th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Select Source International, Mindlance, DSM Staff Network, and The Creative Group.

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$7.25

$53.70

Salary Distribution
Texas$38,400Rank: 31st
The average salary ranks 31st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The Creative Group, DSM Staff Network, APR Consulting, Inc., and GH Remodeling.

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$7.25

$46.60

Salary Distribution
Utah$28,972Rank: 42nd
The average salary ranks 42nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Utah, Intermountain Healthcare, Intermountain Home Care, and Air Medical Resource Group.

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$7.25

$30.15

Salary Distribution
Virginia$56,959Rank: 6th
The average salary ranks 6th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Fairfax County Government, AppleOne, Department of Homeland Security, and Central Virginia Electric Cooperative.

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$14,000

$133,000

Salary Distribution
Vermont$24,403Rank: 47th
The average salary ranks 47th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The University of Vermont Medical Center and CONTACT COMMUNICATIONS.

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$7.25

$26.10

Salary Distribution
Washington$48,556Rank: 13th
The average salary ranks 13th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like City of Seattle, King County, DSM Staff Network, and Acacia Communications.

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$8.20

$51.60

Salary Distribution
Wisconsin$42,581Rank: 21st
The average salary ranks 21st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Wisconsin–Madison, HirePower Personnel, Inc., CorTech, LLC, and Lake Edge Lutheran Church, ELCA.

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$16,000

$81,000

Salary Distribution
West Virginia$32,524Rank: 38th
The average salary ranks 38th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Express Employment Professionals.

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$7.25

$42.35

Salary Distribution
Wyoming$43,108Rank: 19th
The average salary ranks 19th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Wyoming.

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$21,000

$66,000

Salary Distribution

Top 20 National Employers

According to Indeed.com, the following states had employers looking to hire a Communication Specialist. The quoted salary figure represents the average salary from all job postings by this employer.

Employer NameLocationAverage Salary

Learn More

Related Careers

Career NameAverage Salary

Henry Steele
Managing Editor
Henry is Managing Editor of BusinessStudent.com. He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.

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