Program Officer Salary

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

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

Job Duties

Program officers generally work in an organization’s executive team. They report directly to the CEO and hold responsibility for creating, implementing, and leading programs. They must also regularly evaluate those programs, ensuring that they remain as effective as possible. Furthermore, they must keep records of this and report on it, including objective evaluation tools, research, and statistics, to the CEO.

They also have to keep their knowledge up to date on the field, creating programs that entice clients to participate. They must also ensure that the program is fully compliant with relevant rules, regulations, and laws, and also with the organization’s mission. It is a position of leadership, which means they also usually manage other employees that are involved in the program. Sometimes, recruitment, retention, and training are also part of their responsibility. Depending on their level of seniority, they may also manage other programs within the organization, focusing on finding funding sources and managing the overall budget.

Other job duties of a program officer are:

  • To manage budgets and write grants for programs, ensuring that they are fully compliant with all regulations and laws
  • To assist the executive or leadership team to develop a strategic vision for the program, while ensuring that the long and short term goals have been properly defined
  • To build strong partnerships with business partners, affiliate organizations, and the general public
  • To collaborate with and mentor other team members, including program directors and managers
  • To manage the full programming operations of the organization, guiding, implementing, and developing new programs

Where We Work

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 367,600 computer and information systems managers in 2016. The largest employers of these professionals were:

  • Computer systems design and related services: 22%
  • Information: 11%
  • Finance and insurance: 11%
  • Management of companies and enterprises: 10%
  • Manufacturing: 8%

How to Become

A program officer usually has at least a bachelor’s degree and several years’ professional experience. Sometimes, a master’s degree is required.

Education Requirements

Normally, a program officer has a bachelor’s degree in a field relating to computer science as a minimum. This is particularly required if their programs focus on computer programs, which is usually the case. Knowledge of Management Information Systems (MIS) is particularly important.

Furthermore, a graduate degree is now commonly required. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is the most popular degree. One of the reasons for this is because it requires professional experience, which further enhances the career prospects of the program officer. Indeed, professional experience is incredibly important, with the most senior program officers having as much as ten years experience in the field, although this does vary depending on the size and age of the organization they work for.

Program officers can be found in any element of the economy. As a result, they often also have additional certifications in fields related to their particular niche or industry. This is generally not a legal requirement, but it does increase job prospects and it demonstrates a commitment to excellence.

Traits & Qualities

The most effective program officers have the following traits to some degree or other:

  • Strong analytical skills
  • Excellent business skills
  • Great communication skills both verbal and written
  • Strong decision making skills
  • Excellent leadership skills
  • Great organizational skills

Minimum Education

Bachelor’s Degree

National Salary

The national average salary estimate for Program Officer was $70,926. This number is estimated from over 171,724 employees, users past and present job advertisements from Indeed.com. This equates to an hourly salary of $36.94 and monthly of $5,911.

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$14,000

$171,000

Salary Distribution

Salary by State

The following section lists Program Officer salaries in each state around the country. The figures are based on the total number of job postings through Indeed.com. For example, Washington had the largest quoted salary of $94,048 while North Dakota had the smallest quoted salary of $41,845.

Alaska Illinois North Dakota Pennsylvania
Arkansas Louisiana Nebraska Texas
California Maryland New Mexico Virginia
Colorado Maine Nevada Washington
DC Michigan New York
Florida Missouri Ohio
Georgia Montana Oregon
Alaska$74,640 Rank: 9th

The average salary ranks 9th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Mat-Su Health Foundation and Workplace Alaska.

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$3,100

$9,400

Salary Distribution
Arkansas$51,555 Rank: 19th

The average salary ranks 19th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Arkansas Development Finance Authority.

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$14,000

$119,000

Salary Distribution
California$84,867 Rank: 4th

The average salary ranks 4th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The University of California, CyberCoders, California State University, Monterey Bay, and First 5 LA.

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$18,000

$202,000

Salary Distribution
Colorado$71,394 Rank: 11th

The average salary ranks 11th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Growing Home, and U.S. Navy.

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$24,000

$142,000

Salary Distribution
DC$81,953 Rank: 5th

The average salary ranks 5th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like USAJOBS, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of State, and Internal Revenue Service.

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$20,000

$184,000

Salary Distribution
Florida$51,255 Rank: 20th

The average salary ranks 20th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like MHP Salud, United Way of Miami-Dade, and Florida State University.

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$14,000

$127,000

Salary Distribution
Georgia$61,036 Rank: 16th

The average salary ranks 16th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like U.S. Air Force, Georgia State University, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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$14,000

$151,000

Salary Distribution
Illinois$81,504 Rank: 6th

The average salary ranks 6th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like American Library Association and Department of Labor.

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$21,000

$181,000

Salary Distribution
Louisiana$56,027 Rank: 18th

The average salary ranks 18th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Kingsley House, Inc.

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$17,000

$117,000

Salary Distribution
Maryland$65,975 Rank: 13th

The average salary ranks 13th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Johns Hopkins University, Liberty's Promise, and U.S. Army.

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$15,000

$153,000

Salary Distribution
Maine$43,968 Rank: 24th

The average salary ranks 24th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like MaineHousing.

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$16,000

$85,000

Salary Distribution
Michigan$92,907 Rank: 2nd

The average salary ranks 2nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The University of Michigan.

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$14,000

$262,000

Salary Distribution
Missouri$78,623 Rank: 7th

The average salary ranks 7th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like United States Department Of Defense and National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.

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$23,000

$167,000

Salary Distribution
Montana$44,971 Rank: 21st

The average salary ranks 21st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like State of Montana.

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$22,000

$69,000

Salary Distribution
North Dakota$41,845 Rank: 25th

The average salary ranks 25th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like North Dakota State University.

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$21,000

$64,000

Salary Distribution
Nebraska$75,403 Rank: 8th

The average salary ranks 8th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like State of Nebraska.

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$28,000

$145,000

Salary Distribution
New Mexico$44,622 Rank: 22nd

The average salary ranks 22nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Bernalillo County Government.

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$14,000

$131,000

Salary Distribution
Nevada$63,654 Rank: 15th

The average salary ranks 15th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like State of Nevada, AppleOne, and National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.

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$14,000

$161,000

Salary Distribution
New York$73,519 Rank: 10th

The average salary ranks 10th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Foundation for A Just Society, Open Society Foundations, ADMIN FOR CHILDREN'S SVCS, and Department for the Aging.

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$22,000

$153,000

Salary Distribution
Ohio$44,404 Rank: 23rd

The average salary ranks 23rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Ohio State University and Kent State University.

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$14,000

$102,000

Salary Distribution
Oregon$59,979 Rank: 17th

The average salary ranks 17th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The Oregon Community Foundation.

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$21,000

$117,000

Salary Distribution
Pennsylvania$70,003 Rank: 12th

The average salary ranks 12th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Pittsburgh Public Schools and AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE.

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$25,000

$136,000

Salary Distribution
Texas$65,409 Rank: 14th

The average salary ranks 14th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like University of Texas at Austin, U.S. Marine Corps, MCLENNAN COUNTY, and Michael & Susan Dell Foundation.

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$14,000

$153,000

Salary Distribution
Virginia$92,247 Rank: 3rd

The average salary ranks 3rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Veteran Solutions, Inc., Liberty's Promise, National Science Foundation, and U.S. Government.

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$24,000

$205,000

Salary Distribution
Washington$94,048 Rank: 1st

The average salary ranks 1st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority, AlliedBarton Security Services, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

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$21,000

$219,000

Salary Distribution

Top 20 National Employers

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

Employer Name Location Average Salary

Learn More

Related Careers

Career Name Average Salary
Henry R. Steele
Henry R. 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.Follow on Twitter.com

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