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Top 24 Highest-Paying Jobs in California: A Guide for Employers

No matter how big your company is, it’s important to monitor and update your pay scales regularly to keep up with market trends. Learn more about the top 24 highest-paying jobs in California to determine if your compensation structure needs an update.

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Key takeaways

  • The healthcare industry accounts for eight of the top 10 highest-paying jobs in California.
  • Tax partners receive the highest annual compensation of anyone outside the healthcare industry.
  • Two of California’s highest-paying jobs are in the real estate industry.

Top 24 highest-paying jobs in California

So, what are the highest-paying jobs in California? According to Indeed data for 2023, here are the top 24 top-paying jobs in California.¹

1. Anesthesiologist

Median Salary: $451,914
Average Salary: $369,817
An anesthesiologist uses medications to prevent patients from feeling pain during surgery and other procedures.

2. Tax partner

Median Salary: $400,000
Average Salary: $323,946
Tax partners advise clients on a wide range of tax matters, such as how to maximize deductions or use new tax credits to their advantage.

3. Mortgage loan originator

Median Salary: $362,500
Average Salary: $261,490
A mortgage loan originator guides potential homeowners through every stage of the mortgage process, from submitting the initial application to closing the loan.

4. Gastroenterologist

Median Salary: $351,489
Average Salary: $293,859
Gastroenterologists diagnose and treat problems with the gastrointestinal tract, which includes the esophagus, stomach and intestines.

5. Pain management physician

Median Salary: $321,250
Average Salary: $243,552
Pain management physicians use medications, physical therapy and other treatments to ease the pain caused by acute and chronic medical conditions.

6. Chief medical officer

Median Salary: $315,000
Average Salary: $297,469
A chief medical officer oversees the day-to-day functions of a medical facility, such as a hospital or an outpatient surgical center.

7. Psychiatrist

Median Salary: $312,848
Average Salary: $259,250
Psychiatrists diagnose and treat depression, anxiety, PTSD and other mental health conditions.

8. Plastic surgeon

Median Salary: $300,000
Average Salary: $272,721
A plastic surgeon performs procedures to improve a patient’s appearance. For example, a plastic surgeon may perform a facelift on someone concerned with deep folds in their skin.

9. Orthodontist

Median Salary: $300,000
Average Salary: $252,940
An orthodontist is a dental professional who uses braces, retainers and other devices to correct the position of misaligned teeth.

10. Surgeon

Median Salary: $300,000
Average Salary: $283,901
Surgeons perform operations to diagnose or treat illnesses, injuries and deformities, often using specialized instruments. They work in sterile environments with a team of other healthcare professionals.

11. Vascular surgeon

Median Salary: $300,000
Average Salary: $306,833
Vascular surgeons diagnose, monitor and treat conditions affecting the heart, veins and arteries in the human body.

12. Urgent care physician

Median Salary: $299,669
Average Salary: $237,151
Urgent care physicians diagnose and treat acute illnesses and injuries that aren’t serious enough to require a visit to a hospital emergency department.

13. Senior translator

Median Salary: $295,000
Average Salary: $241,834
A senior translator takes material written in one language and translates it into another language. Senior translators may also perform supervisory duties, such as reviewing the work of junior translators.

14. Listing agent

Median Salary: $290,000
Average Salary: $218,215
Listing agents guide homeowners through the process of selling their properties, from setting prices to increasing a home’s curb appeal.

15. Obstetrics and gynecology physician

Median Salary: $280,518
Average Salary: $235,964
OB/GYNs diagnose, monitor and treat conditions of the female reproductive system, such as ovarian cysts, pelvic organ prolapse and menstrual disorders. Obstetrics and gynecology physicians also care for pregnant women, deliver babies and provide postpartum care.

16. Hospitalist

Median Salary: $277,050
Average Salary: $251,114
Hospitalists manage the care of patients who’ve been admitted to the hospital. During a shift, a hospitalist typically examines patients, orders appropriate tests, requests consults from medical specialists and updates patient charts.

17. Vice president of communications

Median Salary: $275,873
Average Salary: $243,080
A company’s vice president of communications is responsible for developing and executing internal and external communications programs.

18. Associate dentist

Median Salary: $275,000
Average Salary: $237,807
An associate dentist works for someone else’s dental practice rather than running a practice themselves. In this role, the associate dentist diagnoses and treats a wide range of dental problems, such as gum disease and tooth decay.

19. Internal medicine physician

Median Salary: $266,340
Average Salary: $231,154
An internist, also known as an internal medicine physician, provides general medical care to adults. Typical job duties include performing examinations, ordering tests, interpreting test results and referring patients to specialists when needed.

20. Dentist

Median Salary: $260,90
Average Salary: $228,627
Dentists provide preventive care, diagnose dental problems and develop treatment plans based on each patient’s symptoms and medical history. A dentist may own their own practice or work for someone else’s business.

21. Family medicine physician

Median Salary: $255,286
Average Salary: $227,044
Family medicine physicians provide medical care to patients of all ages, from young people to senior citizens. In this role, a physician performs exams, recommends preventive measures, educates patients and treats medical conditions.

22. Certified registered nurse anesthetist

Median Salary: $254,500
Average Salary: $252,812
CRNAs care for patients before, during and after procedures requiring sedation, nerve blocks, general anesthesia and other types of pain control.

23. Vice president of engineering

Median Salary: $250,000
Average Salary: $253,435
A vice president of engineering oversees large teams of engineers, ensuring that a firm’s engineering activities align with its business goals.

24. Chief technology officer

Median Salary: $250,000
Average Salary: $232,931
A chief technology officer oversees the use of technology resources in a company, which typically involves developing policies and procedures related to the use of IT assets.

¹Indeed data (US), Dec 2022 – Dec 2023

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