Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2012

43-2021 Telephone Operators

Provide information by accessing alphabetical, geographical, or other directories. Assist customers with special billing requests, such as charges to a third party and credits or refunds for incorrectly dialed numbers or bad connections. May handle emergency calls and assist children or people with physical disabilities to make telephone calls.


National estimates for this occupation
Industry profile for this occupation
Geographic profile for this occupation

National estimates for this occupation: Top

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for this occupation:

Employment (1) Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Wage RSE (3)
10,710 5.4 % $16.67 $34,670 1.5 %

Percentile wage estimates for this occupation:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Hourly Wage $9.18 $11.77 $15.79 $21.56 $26.16
Annual Wage (2) $19,100 $24,480 $32,850 $44,840 $54,420


Industry profile for this occupation: Top

Industries with the highest published employment and wages for this occupation are provided. For a list of all industries with employment in this occupation, see the Create Customized Tables function.

Industries with the highest levels of employment in this occupation:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Wired Telecommunications Carriers 4,610 0.80 $18.68 $38,850
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 1,660 0.03 $15.28 $31,790
Business Support Services 1,230 0.15 $12.76 $26,550
Local Government (OES Designation) 590 0.01 $17.76 $36,940
Other Telecommunications 330 0.31 $17.57 $36,540

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in this occupation:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Wired Telecommunications Carriers 4,610 0.80 $18.68 $38,850
Other Telecommunications 330 0.31 $17.57 $36,540
Business Support Services 1,230 0.15 $12.76 $26,550
Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals 70 0.03 $19.50 $40,570
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 1,660 0.03 $15.28 $31,790

Top paying industries for this occupation:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Household Appliances and Electrical and Electronic Goods Merchant Wholesalers 50 0.02 $24.90 $51,800
Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals 70 0.03 $19.50 $40,570
Wired Telecommunications Carriers 4,610 0.80 $18.68 $38,850
Local Government (OES Designation) 590 0.01 $17.76 $36,940
Other Telecommunications 330 0.31 $17.57 $36,540


Geographic profile for this occupation: Top

States and areas with the highest published employment, location quotients, and wages for this occupation are provided. For a list of all areas with employment in this occupation, see the Create Customized Tables function.





States with the highest employment level in this occupation:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
California 1,760 0.12 1.49 $19.44 $40,430
New York 1,160 0.14 1.65 $18.65 $38,790
Ohio 660 0.13 1.59 $11.96 $24,880
Florida 630 0.09 1.06 $14.75 $30,690
Michigan 460 0.12 1.42 $13.93 $28,980




States with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in this occupation:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Utah 260 0.22 2.62 $12.29 $25,560
South Carolina 250 0.14 1.66 $12.71 $26,440
New York 1,160 0.14 1.65 $18.65 $38,790
New Hampshire 90 0.14 1.69 $21.80 $45,350
Alabama 250 0.14 1.66 $9.73 $20,240




Top paying States for this occupation:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
New Hampshire 90 0.14 1.69 $21.80 $45,350
North Carolina (8) (8) (8) $21.72 $45,180
New Jersey 230 0.06 0.75 $20.19 $41,990
California 1,760 0.12 1.49 $19.44 $40,430
Massachusetts 340 0.10 1.28 $19.39 $40,330





Metropolitan areas with the highest employment level in this occupation:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA Metropolitan Division 910 0.23 2.85 $18.65 $38,790
New York-White Plains-Wayne, NY-NJ Metropolitan Division 750 0.15 1.77 $18.74 $38,970
Philadelphia, PA Metropolitan Division 640 0.35 4.28 $19.33 $40,200
Salt Lake City, UT 250 0.40 4.92 $12.24 $25,460
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Division 240 0.10 1.27 $19.16 $39,850
Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, OH 220 0.23 2.74 $12.51 $26,020
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA 210 0.18 2.23 (8) (8)
Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL Metropolitan Division 190 0.05 0.65 $16.90 $35,150
Baltimore-Towson, MD 170 0.13 1.64 $15.16 $31,540
Nassau-Suffolk, NY Metropolitan Division 170 0.14 1.66 $18.42 $38,310




Metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in this occupation:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Cumberland, MD-WV 60 1.60 19.45 $20.86 $43,390
Salt Lake City, UT 250 0.40 4.92 $12.24 $25,460
Peabody, MA NECTA Division 40 0.39 4.80 $15.06 $31,330
Philadelphia, PA Metropolitan Division 640 0.35 4.28 $19.33 $40,200
Utica-Rome, NY 40 0.32 3.91 $17.82 $37,060
Canton-Massillon, OH 50 0.32 3.95 $10.89 $22,640
Ann Arbor, MI 50 0.26 3.13 $13.81 $28,710
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA Metropolitan Division 910 0.23 2.85 $18.65 $38,790
Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, OH 220 0.23 2.74 $12.51 $26,020
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA 210 0.18 2.23 (8) (8)




Top paying metropolitan areas for this occupation:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Edison-New Brunswick, NJ Metropolitan Division 110 0.11 1.36 $24.28 $50,500
Providence-Fall River-Warwick, RI-MA 90 0.17 2.12 $22.93 $47,690
San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, CA Metropolitan Division (8) (8) (8) $21.73 $45,200
Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick, MD Metropolitan Division 70 0.12 1.47 $20.91 $43,480
Cumberland, MD-WV 60 1.60 19.45 $20.86 $43,390
Sacramento--Arden-Arcade--Roseville, CA 90 0.11 1.35 $19.43 $40,420
Philadelphia, PA Metropolitan Division 640 0.35 4.28 $19.33 $40,200
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Division 240 0.10 1.27 $19.16 $39,850
Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT (8) (8) (8) $18.77 $39,050
New York-White Plains-Wayne, NY-NJ Metropolitan Division 750 0.15 1.77 $18.74 $38,970


About May 2012 National, State, Metropolitan, and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

These estimates are calculated with data collected from employers in all industry sectors, all metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas, and all states and the District of Columbia. The top employment and wage figures are provided above. The complete list is available in the downloadable XLS files.

The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall. The median wage is the 50th percentile wage estimate--50 percent of workers earn less than the median and 50 percent of workers earn more than the median. More about percentile wages.


(1) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.

(2) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a "year-round, full-time" hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly mean wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.

(3) The relative standard error (RSE) is a measure of the reliability of a survey statistic. The smaller the relative standard error, the more precise the estimate.

(8) Estimate not released.

(9) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.


Other OES estimates and related information:

May 2012 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2012 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2012 Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2012 National Industry-Specific Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2012 Occupation Profiles

Technical Notes

 

Last Modified Date: March 29, 2013