Highest Paying Industrial Organizational IO Psychology Jobs

Not all psychologists work directly with patients and clients to help improve their mental health. Many individuals are interested in exploring the psychology of work and large-scale organizational human behavior. An Industrial/Organizational PsyD degree is the ideal degree for those with a passion for understanding those issues and developing methods for impacting and improving human behavior on a large scale.

Psychology itself is a rapidly expanding field with many diverse job opportunities.

Here are 15 jobs you can do with an Industrial/Organizational PsyD degree.

Forensic Psychology Specialist

Generally working within or alongside the criminal justice system, forensic psychologist specialists analyze the behavior of criminal suspects, witnesses and others to determine things like motive and fitness to stand trial. These individuals also often work within family courts to help judges make determinations about custody arrangements.

They are most frequently employed by state and local governments, but also could work within law enforcement agencies or in private consultancy.

Salary range: $75,000-$100,000


A role that combines psychology and statistics, a psychometrician develops, administers and interprets the results of testing related to skills, intellect, personality and emotional health. Such assessments often are used to help inform hiring decisions or admissions.

Psychometricians work primarily in higher education, though many work either inside large organizations, such as multinational companies or the military, or within the consultancy space.

Salary range: $90,000-$140,000

Applied Social Scientist

Applied social scientists use data analysis principles to develop deep understanding of human behavior as it relates to organizational goals. They then work to develop and explain recommendations to achieve business objectives.

They work predominantly in private industry, particularly in technology, social networking and market research companies.

Salary range: $100,000-$175,000

Personnel Psychologist

Personnel psychologists work to develop methods and practices surrounding mental fitness and health in the areas of recruitment, hiring, employee development and promotions to support business objectives within an organization. They are often responsible for monitoring staff and potential employees to determine the personality traits and mental health characteristics that are best suited for hiring and advancement.

Individuals who specialize in personnel psychology work frequently in large, multinational corporations or for other large-scale organizations, such as the military.

Salary range: $80,000-$125,000

Assessment Psychologist

Assessment psychologists create standardized testing and evaluation materials their employers use to help facilitate diagnosis and treatment of patients and clients. Depending on the communities served by their employers, assessment psychologists could be expected to develop, maintain and improve tests for families, children, young adults, older adults, individuals with autism and more.

They will find their best employment options in mental and emotional health treatment facilities, though could also find opportunities with health insurers and in the education space.

Salary range: $75,000-$125,000

Human Capital Consultant

Usually working in their own practices or with consultancy agencies, human capital consultants help companies identify and improve organizational practices related to hiring, promotion and employee satisfaction. These individuals work to address potential problems with company culture, training and communication.

In addition to self-employment or consultancy, these individuals could find opportunities within very large organizations, such as metro school systems.

Salary range: $70,000-$120,000

Experimental Psychologist

Experimental psychologists use observational data to explore psychological phenomena. Their specific area of focus will depend on their employer, but they work to research issues related to human and often animal behavior, cognition and perception, memory, learning, and attention.

They are most often employed by universities and other research organizations, as well as for branches of the military.

Salary range: $70,000-$125,000

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Insider Threat Analyst

A role that requires some technical and data science experience, insider threat analysts use technology and psychology to predict and prevent insider attacks within organizations. Depending on the employer, they could be tasked with writing code and machine learning algorithms to help systems detect potential threats as well as using deep understanding of human nature to inform the code’s purpose.

They will find broad opportunities in large companies, particularly tech companies, as well as for the U.S. government and military.

Salary range: $90,000-$140,000

Human Performance Manager

Human performance managers work within organizations, generally inside human resources departments, to coach and counsel employees to reach their full potential within the organization based on their knowledge of human behavior. Depending on the employer, human performance managers could work hands-on with individual employees or advise department managers on aspects related to improving performance as well as promotions, raises and discipline.

In many companies, this function is done by HR directors or department heads, so a company with a dedicated human performance manager will likely be a large organization.

Salary range: $50,000-$100,000

SEE ALSO: How to Choose an Online PhD in Business Psychology

Leadership Experience Director

Leadership experience directors are normally outside consultants hired by corporations to assist executives and managers within the organization to improve and deepen their leadership abilities. This generally involves studying current behaviors, both by management and by employees, to identify areas of improvement and then working directly with executives and managers to develop action plans for improving corporate culture and helping all employees thrive.

These individuals generally own or work in consultancies, though some very large organizations may employ such professionals.

Salary range: $60,000-$130,000

Environmental Psychologist

If you work in an open-plan office, it’s probably because your employer didn’t consult an environmental psychologist. These individuals use their understanding of human behavior to make recommendations about the workplace and office design decisions.

Environmental psychologists often work as independent consultants, though they also could be employed by architecture and construction firms.

Salary range: $50,000-$100,000

SEE ALSO: Salary Outlook for PhD in Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Learning Design Manager

Learning design managers work both internally within organizations and externally on consumer-facing products. These professionals work to create learning materials, training sessions and growth experiences to achieve business goals.

They could be employed by large enterprises who want to improve employees’ skill sets, or in education-focused organizations.

Salary range: $60,000-$130,000

User Experience Researcher

Frequently employed by technology firms, user experience researchers employ data science methods to analyze large-scale data to develop deep understanding of user behavior. They use both data and psychology to understand the user experience and recommend improvements.

User experience researchers are in high demand among technology companies, but they’re also crucial in any company that provides a web portal for customer purchases.

Salary range: $65,000-$125,000

Human Factors Engineer

In another technology-focused role, human factors engineers develop machines and devices, often for medical device makers, ensuring compliance with FDA regulations (where applicable) and industrial standards. They create product evaluations for usability tests that help guide design and manufacturing of devices.

These individuals will find their largest concentration of opportunities at medical device manufacturers, though they also will find work in aerospace and transportation.

Salary range: $85,000-$100,000

Innovation Strategist

In a largely consulting role, innovation strategists observe and research all aspects of an organization’s functions, including personnel, production, sales, marketing and advertising, customer service and information technology, and develop improvement plans. Those with PsyD degrees are especially qualified for these roles thanks to their deep understanding of human nature, which they can use to inform their recommendations.

Innovation strategists will often work in their own consultancies but could also be hired by organizations to work internally or externally, depending on the business functions.

Salary range: $75,000-$125,000

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There’s no doubt that empathetic individuals who help others solve their emotional problems are in great need and should be highly valued. But it’s often overlooked that companies, governments and other organizations are made up of people, and so organizations need help, too.

Industrial/Organizational Psychology doctorate degree holders who are business- or technology-minded will find their greatest opportunity in working with those organizations. The median salary for psychologists is $75,000+, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, and for those with Industrial/Organizational Doctor of Psychology degrees, our research shows typical salaries are even higher.

SEE ALSO: Online PhD Industrial Organizational Psychology Degrees