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Money may not be everything, particularly if you are working in a field and role that you truly love. But let’s face it, you are providing a service and deserve to be paid a competitive salary for that service.

It makes sense to focus on getting your foot in the door without worrying too much about salary if you are just entering the market, but regardless of your experience, it's right that you are paid fairly. All of us have bills to pay, after all. 

What does average salary mean?

The term 'average salary' refers to a calculation that takes all of the salaries for a particular role, adds them up and divides them by the number of salaries used. This is considered to be a benchmark and helps employees ascertain whether they are being paid a competitive salary.

What does competitive salary actually mean? 

A ‘competitive salary’ refers to a wage that is equal to or higher than the industry average. 

It's important to understand that industry averages will differ depending on location. The industry average will be different when comparing London to Birmingham, for example.

How do you know what the industry average is?

The short answer is with research. 

MRL Consulting believes in matching talented individuals with the right company. It's a two-way street and has to be mutually beneficial. Which is why we keep an eye on the niche industries we operate in. We immerse ourselves with the latest happenings, including understanding industry salary averages.

Below is an overview of the average salaries covering roles in some of the industries we currently recruit for. Remember that these are a guide only.

Example salaries in the software industry

Average process engineer salary

Individuals entering the industry can expect a starting salary of around £26,000 each year. On average, process engineer salaries are £40,000. Those with higher experience levels can earn salaries of up to £68,000. 

Average applications developer salary

Graduates looking for an entry-level role in applications development can expect a salary of around £20,000. When you establish yourself, you will be eligible for a salary between £34,000 and £40,000. Working your way up to a senior applications developer will bump your salary up to £45,000 to £70,000.

Example salaries in the automotive industry 

Automotive engineer salary

Individuals looking to enter the industry could earn £20,000 up to around £28,000. As you gain experience, you should be moving on to a salary between £30,000 and £45,000. When you hit senior level, this should increase to around £60,000.

Mechanical engineer salary

Starting salaries for mechanical engineer roles, including anyone accepted onto a graduate training programme, could be between £20,000 and £28,000. As you gain experience, this could increase to £25,000-£35,000. Principal or lead engineers will see a salary ranging from £35,000 to £50,000. Anyone moving into senior-level positions could be paid anything between £45,000 and £60,000.

Example salaries in the lighting and optics industry 

Electronic engineering salary

Individuals starting out in this industry could see a salary ranging from £21,000 to £25,000. After some time in the industry, your salary could increase to £28,000-£40,000. Once you reach a senior level, salaries will range from £40,000 to £65,000.

Lighting technician salary

This is a challenging role to average as the majority of positions are freelance. For those looking for full-time employment, you could earn £26,000. However, you may have to start on a lower wage while you gain experience. 

For those operating on a freelance basis, the average rate will vary depending on the type of work you take on. For example, if you land a contract for a television drama, you could charge around £247 as a day rate. For commercials, your day rate could hit the £361 mark. If you land a contract for a major motion picture, lighting (shooting) technicians could set a rate or £339 each day, while lighting (rigging) technicians can set a day rate of £292. 

Example salaries in the semiconductors & components industry

Software tester salary

Graduate-level software testers can expect a starting salary of £18,000, going up to £24,000. Individuals who have acquired three to five years of experience could earn between £35,000 and £50,000.

Design engineer salary

Design engineer salaries start at £20,000, going up to around £25,000. Once you have gained some experience, your salary could range between £30,000 and £40,000. Those who reach manager-level or take on a consultants role could earn £50,000 and more. 

Example salaries in the renewable and energy storage industry

Energy engineer salary

Individuals entering the industry can expect a salary ranging from £20,000 and £30,000. As you gain experience, this could increase to £35,000-£60,000. If you acquire a placement within a large corporation at a senior level, your salary could exceed this. 

Energy manager salary

Energy management salaries begin at £22,000 up to around £33,000. People with a postgraduate qualification or previous experience may be able to secure a larger amount. Those with five-years experience or more could earn between £30,000 and £45,000, and anyone with ten years plus experience could earn £60,000. 

Example salaries in the finance and strategy sector

Business analyst salary

The starting salary for business analysts ranges between £21,000 and £31,000. Once you reach the five-year mark, you could earn between £32,000 and £38,000. Top-level salaries range from £39,000 and £50,000.

Finance manager salary

Salaries for finance management start at £24,000, if you opt for investment banking, you could earn an average starting salary of £45,000. For those operating within the not-for-profit or public services sector, you could earn £35,000 to £40,000. Those with ten years experience and more, who work within the commerce and industry sector, could see salaries ranging from £65,000 and £100,000, potentially more.

Example salaries in the medical devices and pharmaceutical sector

Procurement management salary

Those entering the industry as a graduate trainee or buyer can expect to earn around £24,000. Those who move into procurement or purchasing can earn approximately £30,000, with procurement executives earning around £40,000. Once you become a procurement manager, you can earn between £46,000 and up to £53,000 for strategic procurement managers. The highest-level roles can earn between £110,000 and £158,000.

Regulatory affairs officer 

Regulatory affairs officers can expect a starting salary of £30,000 going up to £40,000. Specialists, or those with three to five years experience, can earn between £40,000 and £50,000. Managers could earn between £50,000 and £70,000 and those with more extensive experience, such as a director, could earn £100,000 and more. 

If you feel you aren’t earning as much as you should be, get in touch with one of our specialists to discuss potential options.

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