The 25 highest-paying jobs that you can do from home

Drazen_/Getty ImagesBeing a financial manager is one of the highest-paying jobs that can likely be done from home.
  • Researchers from the University of Chicago studied which jobs can probably be done from home based on their work activities and responsibilities.
  • Many of the jobs that can be performed remotely typically earn more than those that can’t be.
  • We looked at which remote work jobs pay the most, based on data from the Bureau of Labour Statistics.
  • Psychiatrists earn an average of $US220,430 per year, making that the highest-paying job that can likely be done from home.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Jobs that can typically be done from home bring in higher wages than those that can’t, according to a recent analysis of work-from-home occupations out of the University of Chicago. Of the occupations that can be done remotely, various manager positions are some of the highest earning.

The report from researchers at the University of Chicago used job characteristics from the Department of Labour’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET), and showed that about 37% of jobs in the US can be done from home. Based on occupation characteristics, their estimate came out to be greater than the actual share of US jobs that had been done from home pre-pandemic, and is noted as an “upper bound” of the actual share of jobs that can likely be done from home.

Researchers Jonathan Dingel and Brent Neiman looked at certain survey questions from O*NET to figure out whether a job cannot be done remotely. For instance, jobs that require walking or running for a majority of the time, or where the use of equipment or machinery is an important aspect, didn’t make the list.

The researchers also wrote that based on hourly figures of broad occupational categories, those who are likely able to work from home are also high earners. Jobs in computing and education have the highest share using the O*NET classification method.

To find the highest-paying jobs from home, we took the O*NET occupations from the University of Chicago report and matched them with their average annual salary figures from May 2019, the most recently available data from the Bureau of Labour Statistics. We excluded telework jobs that do not have a specific salary. For instance, learning distance coordinators listed on O*NET can be done from home, but this occupation does not have a specific salary listed on BLS.

The following are the 25 highest-paying jobs that can be done from home based on job characteristics.


25. Political scientists

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What they do, according to O*NET: Study the origin, development, and operation of political systems.

Salary: $US120,260

Number of people employed: 6,010


24. Actuaries

Jirapong Manustrong/Getty Images

What they do, according to O*NET: Analyse statistical data, such as mortality, accident, sickness, disability, and retirement rates and construct probability tables to forecast risk and liability for payment of future benefits.

Salary: $US120,970

Number of people employed: 22,260


23. Postsecondary health specialties teachers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Teach courses in health specialties, in fields such as dentistry and laboratory technology.

Salary: $US121,620

Number of people employed: 201,920


22. Astronomers

Reuters/Morteza Nikoubazl

What they do, according to O*NET: Observe, research, and interpret astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge or apply such information to practical problems.

Salary: $US122,270

Number of people employed: 2,070


20 (tie). Computer hardware engineers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Research, design, develop, or test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use.

Salary: $US123,030

Number of people employed: 67,880


20 (tie). General and operations managers

Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate the operations of public or private sector organisations.

Salary: $US123,030

Number of people employed: 2,400,280


19. Training and development managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate the training and development activities and staff of an organisation.

Salary: $US123,470

Number of people employed: 38,510


18. Computer and information research scientists

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What they do, according to O*NET: Conduct research into fundamental computer and information science as theorists, designers, or inventors.

Salary: $US127,460

Number of people employed: 30,780


17. Purchasing managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate the activities of buyers, purchasing officers, and related workers involved in purchasing materials, products, and services.

Salary: $US128,400

Number of people employed: 72,100


16. Human resources managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate human resources activities and staff of an organisation.

Salary: $US129,570

Number of people employed: 154,800


15. Postsecondary law teachers

Marty Caivano/Digital First Media/Boulder Daily Camera via Getty Images/Getty Images

What they do, according to O*NET: Teach courses in law.

Salary: $US129,950

Number of people employed: 16,180


14. Physicists

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What they do, according to O*NET: Conduct research into physical phenomena, develop theories on the basis of observation and experiments, and devise methods to apply physical laws and theories.

Salary: $US131,080

Number of people employed: 16,730


13. Public relations and fundraising managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate activities designed to create or maintain a favourable public image or raise issue awareness for their organisation or client; or if engaged in fundraising, plan, direct, or coordinate activities to solicit and maintain funds for special projects or nonprofit organisations.

Salary: $US132,630

Number of people employed: 79,160


12. Compensation and benefits managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate compensation and benefits activities of an organisation.

Salary: $US134,210

Number of people employed: 16,900


11. Sales managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate the actual distribution or movement of a product or service to the customer.

Salary: $US141,690

Number of people employed: 402,600


10. Advertising and promotions managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate advertising policies and programs or produce collateral materials.

Salary: $US141,890

Number of people employed: 25,100


9. Lawyers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions.

Salary: $US145,300

Number of people employed: 657,170


8. Natural sciences managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics, statistics, and research and development in these fields.

Salary: $US145,450

Number of people employed: 67,720


7. Financial managers

Drazen_/Getty Images

What they do, according to O*NET: Direct and coordinate financial activities of workers in a branch, office, or department of an establishment, such as branch bank, brokerage firm, risk and insurance department, or credit department.

Salary: $US147,530

Number of people employed: 654,790


6. Marketing managers

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What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate marketing policies and programs, such as determining the demand for products and services offered by a firm and its competitors, and identify potential customers.

Salary: $US149,200

Number of people employed: 263,680


5. Architectural and engineering managers

Dmitry Kalinovsky/Shutterstock

What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as architecture and engineering or research and development in these fields.

Salary: $US152,930

Number of people employed: 194,250


4. Computer and information systems managers

Getty/Maskot

What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as electronic data processing, information systems, systems analysis, and computer programming.

Salary: $US156,390

Number of people employed: 433,960


3. Petroleum engineers

Larisa Rudenko/Shutterstock

What they do, according to O*NET: Devise methods to improve oil and gas extraction and production and determine the need for new or modified tool designs.

Salary: $US156,780

Number of people employed: 32,620


2. Chief executives

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

What they do, according to O*NET: Determine and formulate policies and provide overall direction of companies or private and public sector organisations within guidelines set up by a board of directors or similar governing body.

Salary: $US193,850

Number of people employed: 205,890


1. Psychiatrists

Zinkevych/Getty Images

What they do, according to O*NET: Physicians who diagnose, treat, and help prevent disorders of the mind.

Salary: $US220,430

Number of people employed: 25,530

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