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Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services: NAICS 54

About the Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services sector

The professional, scientific, and technical services sector is part of the professional and business services supersector.

The Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services sector comprises establishments that specialize in performing professional, scientific, and technical activities for others. These activities require a high degree of expertise and training. The establishments in this sector specialize according to expertise and provide these services to clients in a variety of industries and, in some cases, to households. Activities performed include: legal advice and representation; accounting, bookkeeping, and payroll services; architectural, engineering, and specialized design services; computer services; consulting services; research services; advertising services; photographic services; translation and interpretation services; veterinary services; and other professional, scientific, and technical services.

North American Industry Classification System

The professional, scientific, and technical services sector consists of a single subsector, Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services: NAICS 541. Data published under either the sector or subsector classification are included in the tables below. The subsector consists of these industry groups:

  • Legal Services: NAICS 5411
  • Accounting, Tax Preparation, Bookkeeping, and Payroll Services: NAICS 5412
  • Architectural, Engineering, and Related Services: NAICS 5413
  • Specialized Design Services: NAICS 5414
  • Computer Systems Design and Related Services: NAICS 5415
  • Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services: NAICS 5416
  • Scientific Research and Development Services: NAICS 5417
  • Advertising and Related Services: NAICS 5418
  • Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services: NAICS 5419

Workforce Statistics

This section provides information relating to employment and unemployment in professional, scientific, and technical services. While most data are obtained from employer or establishment surveys, information on industry unemployment comes from a national survey of households. The following tables present an overview of the industry including the number of jobs, the unemployment rate of those previously employed in the industry, union membership and representation, data for occupations common to the industry, and projections of occupational employment change.

Employment and Unemployment

Data series Back
data
Jan.
2022
Feb.
2022
Mar.
2022
Apr.
2022

Employment (in thousands)

Employment, all employees (seasonally adjusted)

10,207.5 10,239.0 (p)10,297.4 (p)10,333.2

Employment, production and nonsupervisory employees

7,804.0 7,895.5 (p)7,920.2  

Unemployment

Unemployment rate

2.5% 2.1% 2.1% 1.9%

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics, Current Population Survey

Union Membership and Representation

Data series Back
data
2018 2019 2020 2021

Union membership and representation

Members of unions (percent of wage and salary workers)

1.5% 1.4% 1.3% 1.2%

Represented by unions (percent of wage and salary workers)

2.1% 2.2% 2.1% 1.9%

(Source: Current Population Survey)

Employment by Occupation

Data series Employment,
2021

Accountants and auditors

436,720

Architectural and civil drafters

73,260

Lawyers

436,230

Management analysts

301,300

(Source: Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics)

Projections

For projected (future) employment estimates, see the National Employment Matrix, which includes employment estimates by industry and occupation for professional, scientific, and technical services.

(Source: Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections)

Earnings and Hours

This section presents data on employee earnings and weekly hours. The latest industry averages of hourly earnings and weekly hours, as well as weekly earnings by union membership status, are shown. In addition, recent hourly and annual earnings are shown for occupations commonly found in real estate and rental and leasing. This section also contains information on the average cost of benefits paid by employers, as well as recent rates of change in wages and total compensation.

Earnings and Hours of All Employees

Data series Back
data
Dec.
2021
Jan.
2022
Feb.
2022
Mar.
2022

Average hourly earnings

$46.68 $47.52 $47.24 (p)$47.25

Average weekly hours

36.9 38.0 37.3 (p)37.2

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Earnings and Hours of Production and Nonsupervisory Employees

Data series Back
data
Dec.
2021
Jan.
2022
Feb.
2022
Mar.
2022

Average hourly earnings

$40.28 $40.92 $40.60 (p)$40.50

Average weekly hours

36.3 37.4 36.6 (p)36.6

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Earnings by Occupation

Data series Wages, 2021
Hourly Annual
Median Mean Median Mean

Accountants and auditors

$37.24 $42.05 $77,450 $87,470

Architectural and civil drafters

$29.05 $29.38 $60,430 $61,100

Lawyers

$61.39 $72.71 $127,690 $151,230

Management analysts

$48.16 $53.11 $100,170 $110,470

(Source: Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics)

Employee Benefits

This section presents data on the incidence (the percentage of workers with access to and participation in employer-provided benefit plans) and provisions of selected employee benefits from the National Compensation Survey. More Benefits estimates are also accessible from the Benefits database, the archived NCS publications page, and the complete Employee Benefits Excel dataset (XLSX).

Data series Access Participation
Back
data
2021 Back
data
2021

Private industry

Retirement benefit plans

86 72

Defined benefit plans

15 9

Defined contribution plans

85 70

(Source: Employee Benefits in the United States)

Data series After 1 year of service After 20 years of service
Back
data
2021 Back
data
2021

Mean number of vacation days for private industry workers without consolidated leave plans

11 18

(Source: Employee Benefits in the United States)

Data series Back
data
2021

Percent of private industry workers with access to employer-sponsored benefits

Health care

89

Paid vacation

93

Paid sick leave

93

(Source: Employee Benefits in the United States)

Employer Compensation Costs

Data series Back
data
2nd quarter
2021
3rd quarter
2021
4th quarter
2021
1st quarter
2022

Private industry

12-month percent change

Total compensation

2.4% 3.8% 3.6% 4.1%

Wages and salaries

2.2% 3.8% 3.7% 4.2%

3-month percent change

Total compensation

0.5% 1.7% 0.5% 1.3%

Wages and salaries

0.7% 1.8% 0.5% 1.2%

(Source: Compensation Cost Trends)

Data series Private industry
Compensation component
($ per hour worked)
Percent of total compensation
Back
data
4th quarter 2021 Back
data
4th quarter 2021

Total compensation

62.39 100.0

Wages and salaries

44.10 70.7

Total benefits

18.29 29.3

Insurance

4.18 6.7

Retirement

1.94 3.1

Paid leave

5.61 9.0

(Source: Compensation Cost Trends)

Union Membership and Representation

Data series Back
data
Median weekly earnings
2018 2019 2020 2021

Union membership and representation

Full-time workers

$1,364 $1,452 $1,487 $1,515

Members of unions

$1,264 $1,179 $1,394 $1,527

Represented by unions

$1,205 $1,230 $1,362 $1,365

Nonunion

$1,367 $1,455 $1,492 $1,518

(Source: Current Population Survey)

Work-related Fatalities, Injuries, and Illnesses

This section presents data for the industry on the number of workplace fatalities and the rates of workplace injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time workers in professional, scientific, and technical services. An injury or illness is considered to be work-related if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing condition.

Data series 2017 2018 2019 2020

Fatalities

Number of fatalities

69 89 94 63

Blank cells indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.

Data series 2020

Rate of injury and illness cases per 100 full-time workers

Total recordable cases

0.7

Cases involving days away from work, job restriction, or transfer

0.3

Cases involving days away from work

0.2

Cases involving days of job transfer or restriction

0.1

Blank cells indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.

(Source: Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities)

Workplace Trends

This section presents data on the number of establishments in professional, scientific, and technical services.

Establishments

Data series Back
data
4th quarter
2020
1st quarter
2021
2nd quarter
2021
3rd quarter
2021

Number of establishments

Private industry

1,357,563 (p)1,374,334 (p)1,408,344 (p)1,441,338

Local government

1,104 (p)1,086 (p)1,086 (p)1,096

State government

497 (p)567 (p)566 (p)571

Federal government

1,306 (p)1,305 (p)1,309 (p)1,302

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages)

 

Data extracted on: May 20, 2022