As big data continues to dominate every industry, including the health and medical fields, bioinformatician careers will continue to surge. This unique intersection of data science, biology, and computer science is paving the way for incredible discoveries in pharmaceutical therapies, diagnostic tools, and personalized medicine, which is proving even more valuable today.
Given the incredible pace of tech advancements, it’s no wonder that bioinformaticians salaries are growing and the jobs are quickly crawling up the list of hottest occupations that are relatively future-proof. But what’s the salary potential for someone in this field?
Bioinformatics Leads to a Lucrative Career
The bioinformaticians salary report takes into account nuances based on location, years of experience, and education. Like all life or bioscience careers, a Ph.D will afford you some of the highest salaries and allow you to engage in the most advanced research opportunities.
According to Glassdoor, the average base salary for a bioinformatician hovers around $96,000. Bioinformatics scientists with an MS or Ph.D in San Francisco can expect to earn anywhere from $75,000 up to $166,000, with higher salaries typically afforded to Ph.Ds in computational biology or statistics, genetics, molecular biology, or a related discipline.
Other sources, like Payscale, offer a more conservative bioinformaticians salary report. They identify the base pay range as $47,000-$102,000, with a median salary of $70,000. Comparatively, Payscale identifies the salary range for software engineers between $61,000-$126,000.
O*NET OnLine, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, puts the average salary for bioinformatics scientists in California at $90,710. Their range extends from $55,000 to $147,000, which is more in line with Glassdoor’s salary assessment.
What Kind of Experience are Companies Looking For?
Some of the six-figure bioinformatician roles require extensive expertise in the manipulation, analysis, and interpretation of high-dimensional genetic and genomic data, and being able to apply such data to reveal fundamental biological insights.
Proven competence in software programming languages such as R or Python and bioinformatics tools such as Blast and Clustawl are high on the checklist. Statistics, data mining, data visualization, and a strong understanding of molecular biology and genetics are also needed to land one of these in-demand roles.
Bioinformatics is Surging
One of the reasons for the high bioinformaticians’ salary report is that biologists are faced with insurmountable amounts of data that are being generated incredibly quickly. This is partly because we’re unable to draw significant conclusions from studies involving 100 or 1,000 subjects any longer.
Today, we rely on analyzing data from 500,000 or millions of people, which is why people skilled at distilling information from biology, statistics, and data science are in high demand.
This trend is predicted to grow over the next 5-7 years. O*NET OnLine projects that job growth for bioinformatics scientists nationwide to be 5-9%, reaching as high as 12% in California.
Udacity offers a range of courses that can help you gain the skills needed to break into the field of bioinformatics like data visualization. The School of Data Science, Programming and Development, and AI include courses that are aligned with the most important disciplines in bioinformatics.
Check out our full catalog to see which Udacity Nanodgree program can propel you to the next step in your career.