Rake In The Big Bucks: 9 High Salary Careers In The Public Sector

Rake In The Big Bucks: 9 High Salary Careers In The Public Sector

Given the economic slowdown of the last few years, many people have started to look for good paying work in places they may not have considered before. One of those places is the federal government. Despite the sequester and the slower economy, the federal government still is posting high-paying jobs in many parts of the country. Also, many state and local governments continue to hire briskly, as well. If you are interested in high paying, public sector, and public administration work, be sure to review the following high salary careers.

High Salary Careers In The Public Sector

1. Attorney

If you are interested in practicing law, doing so in the federal government is always an attractive option - the salaries are solid, and the benefits and job security are outstanding. You can find yourself in great demand in many federal agencies, such as the Department of Justice, the Department of the Interior, and the Department of the Treasury. It is true that you can generally earn a higher salary in the private sector as an attorney, but it is difficult to beat the job security of federal employment. The median, public sector salary for attorneys is $114,000.

2. Political Scientist

You will study the origin, development, and operation of political systems. You have to do a great deal of research on political ideas and how governments operate. About 53% of political scientists work for the US government, and others work for think tanks, nonprofit organizations, colleges, and universities. These jobs can be difficult to find in the federal government, but the median pay is excellent - around $114,000 per year.

3. Financial Manager

Many don’t realize it, but every federal agency has financial advisors and managers to help that agency manage its budget effectively. You will coordinate monetary activities, including accounting, investing, securities, and banking. You will find that the most demand is in the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Veteran’s Affairs, and the Army. Median salary - $101,000.

4. City Manager

It is absolutely vital for local counties and cities to have strong financial and operations managers. You will ensure that city services will be available and that policies are fair to both the rich and the poor in the community. This is a vital public service and public administration job that is compensated well - around $93,000 per year.

5. Computer Scientist

These professionals are in great demand in both the private and public sector. Generally, demand in the federal government is highest in the Army, Navy, and Department of the Interior. There is a huge amount of data streaming into the government that needs to be effectively managed, so this has created big opportunities for people with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in this field. Median salary in the government in this field - $90,900.

6. Human Resources Director

The federal government needs to have effective human resource professionals just like any private company. You will work to determine who gets hired and who does not, and will also develop appropriate training materials and programs. Median salary in the public sector for HR directors is $88,000.

7. Economist

Having good economists in the federal government is important so that legislators can design the most effective fiscal policies, debt ceilings, and tax policy. Economists are in great demand in the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Army. If you want to have a better chance of breaking into this public sector career, you may want to try to obtain an internship first with the SEC. The median wage is $94,100.

8. Criminal Investigator

This public service and administration career involves some degree of danger and long hours in some cases. But you will find that highly qualified criminal investigators are needed by the Department of Justice, the EPA, and the Navy. The median salary in the public sector is $88,100. You also can find related public administration work in these agencies that is more paperwork than field work.

9. Architect

Becoming an architect is not easy. You need to go to a school that is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board and pass the Architect Registration Examination. However, once you get the appropriate credentials, you will find that skills in this field are in great demand in the Department of Health and Human Services, the Navy, and the Army. Generally, professional architects who work in public service will earn more than in the private sector. The median wage for public sector architects currently is $85,500. Professionals who work in these high paying careers have strong assurance that their careers will be rewarding, both personally and financially. Photo Credit: Shutterstock
Man on laptop enjoys summer while working full time

There you are: sitting on the beach, covered in sunscreen, reading your favorite book, drinking your favorite drink under the cool shade of an umbrella. Life doesn't get any better than this. Suddenly, a door slams, a phone rings, a printer turns on. You jolt back into consciousness. You're at work, sitting in your cubicle, without even a hint of sunshine streaming in from outside.

Read moreShow less