Travel, Long Hours, More Responsibilities: Today's CSPs

Today's Certified Safety Professional is working more than 40 hours a week, traveling for work, and responsible for significantly more areas (such as ergonomics, security, systems safety, and environmental matters) than when they entered the field. Still, they enjoy the work and earn high salaries, according to a January 2008 salary survey conducted by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals and presented last week at the 2008 American Society of Safety Engineers' meeting in Las Vegas.

About 7,000 people who hold CSP certification were invited to take the online survey, and 2,572 responded, according to the BCSP paper included on ASSE's proceedings CD. Thirty-eight percent of the respondents work in manufacturing, and 29.5 percent of the respondents work for companies with more than 25,000 employees. Only about 12 percent of the respondents work 40 hours per week or less, and only 6.8 percent of the respondents said their job does not involve travel. For 9.6 percent of the respondents, they are traveling half of the time they are working, or more.

The chart showing how responsibilities have grown since the respondents entered professional practice is interesting. While job responsibilities in all 20 practice areas (including Other) have increased, the greatest increases were for ergonomics, risk management, safety engineering, occupational health, and environmental work. About 73 percent of the respondents said their annual compensation exceeds $80,000, and most (92.7 percent) said they are eligible for bonus pay.

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