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Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics
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Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2020

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 Telephone Operators
Industry profile for Telephone Operators
Geographic profile for Telephone Operators

National estimates for Telephone Operators: Top

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for Telephone Operators:

Employment (1) Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Wage RSE (3)
4,630 7.4 % $ 18.91 $ 39,340 1.5 %

Percentile wage estimates for Telephone Operators:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Hourly Wage $ 12.02 $ 14.15 $ 18.13 $ 23.41 $ 28.08
Annual Wage (2) $ 25,000 $ 29,430 $ 37,710 $ 48,700 $ 58,410


Industry profile for Telephone Operators: Top

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

Industries with the highest levels of employment in Telephone Operators:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 1,170 0.02 $ 18.45 $ 38,380
Telecommunications 720 0.10 $ 23.35 $ 48,560
Offices of Physicians 630 0.02 $ 15.09 $ 31,390
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals (OEWS Designation) 300 0.01 $ 21.40 $ 44,520
Traveler Accommodation 230 0.02 $ 16.43 $ 34,180

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in Telephone Operators:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Telecommunications 720 0.10 $ 23.35 $ 48,560
Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals 110 0.04 $ 20.56 $ 42,760
Offices of Physicians 630 0.02 $ 15.09 $ 31,390
Other Ambulatory Health Care Services 60 0.02 $ 15.55 $ 32,330
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 1,170 0.02 $ 18.45 $ 38,380

Top paying industries for Telephone Operators:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Junior Colleges 40 0.01 $ 26.19 $ 54,460
Telecommunications 720 0.10 $ 23.35 $ 48,560
Computer Systems Design and Related Services (8) (8) $ 21.72 $ 45,170
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals (OEWS Designation) 300 0.01 $ 21.40 $ 44,520
Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals 110 0.04 $ 20.56 $ 42,760


Geographic profile for Telephone Operators: Top

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





States with the highest employment level in Telephone Operators:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
New York 700 0.08 2.41 $ 22.37 $ 46,540
California 470 0.03 0.86 $ 21.48 $ 44,690
Ohio 360 0.07 2.11 $ 14.21 $ 29,550
Georgia 250 0.06 1.73 $ 16.77 $ 34,880
Texas 210 0.02 0.51 $ 17.10 $ 35,560




States with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Telephone Operators:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Rhode Island 50 0.11 3.21 $ 19.53 $ 40,630
West Virginia 50 0.08 2.48 $ 14.03 $ 29,190
New York 700 0.08 2.41 $ 22.37 $ 46,540
Ohio 360 0.07 2.11 $ 14.21 $ 29,550
Hawaii 40 0.06 1.87 $ 19.21 $ 39,960




Top paying states for Telephone Operators:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
New York 700 0.08 2.41 $ 22.37 $ 46,540
District of Columbia (8) (8) (8) $ 22.00 $ 45,770
Massachusetts 180 0.05 1.63 $ 21.51 $ 44,750
California 470 0.03 0.86 $ 21.48 $ 44,690
Pennsylvania 160 0.03 0.88 $ 20.32 $ 42,270





Metropolitan areas with the highest employment level in Telephone Operators:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 600 0.07 2.03 $ 22.93 $ 47,680
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA 160 0.06 1.79 $ 18.14 $ 37,730
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 100 0.02 0.53 $ 23.09 $ 48,030
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH 100 0.04 1.10 $ 20.16 $ 41,920
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA 90 0.18 5.30 $ 23.46 $ 48,800
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD 80 0.03 0.93 $ 19.17 $ 39,870
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 70 0.03 0.87 $ 23.77 $ 49,440
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA 60 0.05 1.37 $ 21.45 $ 44,620
Toledo, OH 60 0.20 6.05 $ 15.27 $ 31,770
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 50 0.02 0.59 $ 15.06 $ 31,320




Metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Telephone Operators:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Charleston, WV 40 0.35 10.53 $ 15.00 $ 31,200
Toledo, OH 60 0.20 6.05 $ 15.27 $ 31,770
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA 90 0.18 5.30 $ 23.46 $ 48,800
Jackson, MS 30 0.12 3.59 $ 13.86 $ 28,830
Dayton, OH 40 0.10 3.04 $ 16.55 $ 34,420
Memphis, TN-MS-AR 40 0.07 2.15 $ 14.69 $ 30,550
Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN 40 0.07 2.10 $ 15.33 $ 31,880
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, NY 30 0.07 2.04 $ 19.60 $ 40,760
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 600 0.07 2.03 $ 22.93 $ 47,680
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA 160 0.06 1.79 $ 18.14 $ 37,730




Top paying metropolitan areas for Telephone Operators:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 70 0.03 0.87 $ 23.77 $ 49,440
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA 90 0.18 5.30 $ 23.46 $ 48,800
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 100 0.02 0.53 $ 23.09 $ 48,030
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 600 0.07 2.03 $ 22.93 $ 47,680
Pittsburgh, PA (8) (8) (8) $ 22.69 $ 47,190
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV (8) (8) (8) $ 21.75 $ 45,250
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA 60 0.05 1.37 $ 21.45 $ 44,620
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 50 0.01 0.39 $ 21.44 $ 44,590
Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN 40 0.04 1.11 $ 20.27 $ 42,170
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH 100 0.04 1.10 $ 20.16 $ 41,920


About May 2020 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 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 OEWS estimates and related information:

May 2020 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 National Industry-Specific Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 Occupation Profiles

Technical Notes

 

Last Modified Date: March 31, 2021