Biomedical engineers combine the principles of engineering and medical and biological sciences to design equipment, devices and computer technology for the healthcare industry. Biomedical engineers in the US have the highest median income at $86,220 followed by Australia with AU$65,210 ($49,526 USD) and New Zealand and Canada closely behind at NZ$62,177 ($44,279 USD) and C$58,099 (43,413 USD), respectively. These professionals working in India earn the lowest median salaries at R244,322 ($3,653 USD). Salaries vary worldwide with influence from experience and geographic region as explained in this guide.
How Much Does a Biomedical Engineer Make Per Year?
Biomedical Engineer Salaries
Annual Wage (median)
Factors That Influence Biomedical Engineers’ Salaries
Because of the educational requirements to enter a career in biomedical engineering, this does not have as heavy of an influence as other factors like experience and geographic region.
1. Geographic Area
Biomedical Engineer Salary in the US
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov), the median yearly salary in the US is just over $86,000. Those entering their careers can expect a yearly income of about $30,500, increasing to about $139,500 with experience. According to payscale.com, those working in Boston and Minneapolis receive higher pay while New York and Cleveland biomedical engineers earn less. This is likely due to supply of experienced professionals for the region’s demand rather than based on the cost of living for these cities. There are more new people entering this field as 72% of the nation’s biomedical engineers have four years’ experience or less.
Biomedical Engineer Salary in Canada
Biomedical engineers in Canada earn between C$40,651 and C$89,304 per year, with the median income at C$58,099, according to payscale.com. There is also potential for more than an additional C$15,000 in bonus and profit sharing incentives.
Biomedical Engineer Salary in UK
A biomedical engineer in UK earns a median yearly salary of £27,682, as reported by payscale.com. Entry level biomedical engineers bring home about £20,039 and increase their earnings up to more than £52,500 with salary, bonus and profit sharing.
Biomedical Engineer Salary in Australia
According to payscale.com, biomedical engineers employed in Australia earn yearly salaries ranging from AU$46,386 to AU$96,821. The median salary is AU$65,210 per year. There is potential to boost earnings nearly AU$16,000 with bonus and profit sharing incentives.
Biomedical Engineer Salary in New Zealand
Many biomedical engineers in New Zealand earn between NZ$45,000 and NZ$70,000, while those most experienced with more than 10 years in the field earn between NZ$70,000 and NZ$120,000 per year, according to careers.govt.nz. There is a shortage of professionals in this field, indicating salary levels should remain strong.
Biomedical Engineer Salary in India
In India, an entry level biomedical engineer can expect a yearly salary of about Rs111,158, according to payscale.com. With experience, salaries increase to over Rs625,406 per year, with the median hitting at Rs244,322. Bonus and profit sharing can further boost incomes by more than Rs245,800.
Biomedical Engineer Salary in South Africa
As a biomedical engineer in South Africa, an individual’s yearly salary will range between R85,600 and R760,000, as reported by payscale.com. The median annual salary is about R343,950. While biomedical engineering is a male-dominated field, of the countries included in this guide, South Africa has the highest percentage of female professionals at 38% compared to between 18% and 29% for the other countries reviewed.
The field of biomedical engineering is comprised of many who are fairly new to the field; therefore, experience plays a strong role in income levels. Payscale.com reports that at 22%, New Zealand has the highest percentage of biomedical engineers possessing 10 years’ experience or more, followed by Australia with 15% and the US and UK each with 12%. While engineering is a popular field in South Africa, the specialty of biomedical engineering continues to be a newer field with few professionals practicing longer than nine years, and similarly in India, 91% have nine years’ experience or less.
As a result, the difference in incomes for entry level positions compared to senior level positions is great with South Africa the highest at 788%, followed by India at 463% and the US at 358%. With experience, no country included in this guide had an increase in salary with experience of less than 109%.
Because this field is highly skilled and involves a great deal of technological training, a four-year degree is required with a post-graduate degree recommended in some countries and/or industries. According to jobvine.co.za, those entering this career in South Africa will need a dual degree in engineering and a field related to medicine such as biology.
Similarly in New Zealand, careers.govt.nz reports that either an undergraduate degree in biomedical engineering or a dual degree in engineering and biomedical science is needed while a PhD will be required for research work. In the US, bls.gov states that biomedical engineers need a four-year bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering or, if completed in another field of engineering, then electives in biological science or a post-graduate degree in biomedical engineering will be needed.
Biomedical engineers work in hospitals, research facilities, manufacturing, pharmaceutical companies and universities. Those employed in this field report high job satisfaction gained from working on cutting-edge technology that aids in the health and well-being of others.
Most biomedical engineers work a full-time schedule, primarily during typical business hours from Monday through Friday. Those who work in hospital settings may have some weekend or evening hours if interacting with patients, while those who are employed by universities may enjoy breaks that coincide with the school schedule.
Bonuses and Benefit Packages
As is common with those who work in healthcare-related fields, it is common to receive a full benefits package with medical, dental and vision coverage. Bonus and profit sharing opportunities are also common worldwide, whether working in the private or public sector.
Global demand for biomedical engineers is high with future job growth expected worldwide as a result of increasing technology, the need for efficient and effective medical devices, combined with an aging population. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) estimates growth in the field at 23% from 2014 through 2024. Other countries indicate demand expected to exceed or support the number of biomedical engineers beginning their careers, and New Zealand is currently experiencing short supply.
Biomedical engineers earn respectable salaries with good opportunities for bonuses and profit sharing incentives to further increase their incomes. Those working in this field indicate high job satisfaction and a good work-life balance. Future employment opportunities in this field are expected to remain strong with job growth expected worldwide.