14 Highest Paying Hourly Jobs

A medical assistant helps an elderly woman
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You may think that jobs that pay by the hour pay less than salaried jobs, but that is not always the case. Hourly jobs can pay very well. Below, learn which 14 jobs are the most popular, high-paying hourly jobs. All median pay is based on 2021 rates, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Key Takeaways

  • Hourly jobs can pay just as well as salaried jobs, if not better. 
  • You can find a well-paying hourly job in the medical field, in service-based roles, and in corporate industries. 
  • Some high-paying hourly roles require degrees or certifications and others don’t. 
01 of 14

Financial Clerk

Financial clerks perform various administrative duties for banks, insurance companies, and other organizations.

Specific financial clerk jobs range from bank tellers to bookkeepers to payroll clerks. Most clerks require a high school diploma and on-the-job training, although some specialized clerks require a college degree in business or economics.

Median Pay: $21.52 per hour

02 of 14

Administrative Assistant or Secretary

Secretaries and administrative assistants perform clerical and organizational tasks for an organization. They work in nearly every industry, including law, medicine, and government.

Pay depends on the industry and the complexity of the secretary’s tasks. For example, executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants, who work for top executives, can earn up to $62,060 a year.

Median Pay: $19.08 per hour

03 of 14

Dental Assistant

Dental assistants work in dental offices, performing a variety of tasks ranging from patient care to record keeping to some lab work.

Some states require that dental assistants graduate from an accredited program and pass a state certification or licensing exam, while other states only require on-the-job training.

Most dental assistants work full-time, but many choose to work part-time. Some dental assistants work evenings or weekends, depending on their office's hours.

Median Pay: $18.59 per hour

04 of 14

Construction Worker

Construction workers perform a number of tasks at construction sites, ranging from preparing construction sites to unloading materials to operating machinery. Construction workers may help build buildings, tear down buildings, construct roads, or dig tunnels or shafts.

Some construction laborers are self-employed, while others work for a construction contractor or company. Most construction workers require brief on-the-job training, although some construction workers engage in apprenticeship programs that offer technical instruction.

Some laborers earn certificates in special skills such as concrete finishing to learn to perform more specialized work, which can earn them more money.

Median Pay: $18.04 per hour

05 of 14

Phlebotomist

Phlebotomists collect blood samples from patients. They are part of larger medical laboratory teams in hospitals, doctors’ offices, and diagnostic laboratories. Phlebotomists must have a high school diploma or GED.

Some states require that phlebotomists have a state license or certification as well. There are a number of other positions within a laboratory team, but phlebotomist positions tend to be in high demand.

Median Pay: $17.97 per hour

Note

High-paying hourly jobs may be a good fit for someone who is also in school or is taking care of a family member or children. That’s because they’re often part-time.

06 of 14

Medical Assistant

Medical assistants perform a variety of clinical and administrative duties in health practitioners’ offices. Tasks may range from helping with patient examinations to scheduling patient appointments.

Medical assistants typically must have a high school diploma and on-the-job training, but there is no required licensure or certification.

Median Pay: $17.88 per hour

07 of 14

Assembler

Assemblers and fabricators construct various products ranging from engines to aircrafts to toys. They may also be responsible for testing the quality of the finished products. Assemblers typically work in manufacturing plants.

Most assembler positions require a high school diploma and some on-the-job experience. However, some of the more specialized positions require more formal education through technical schools; these positions tend to pay more money. For example, aircraft assemblers (who require technical knowledge) can earn a median annual wage of $49,480, whereas the more general median wage for assemblers is just $37,170.

Median Pay: $17.87 per hour

08 of 14

Customer Service Representative

Customer service representatives interact with customers of an organization, answering questions about the organization’s products and services, and handling customer orders, returns, and complaints.

They may interact with customers in person, or via phone or the internet. Reps can work in almost any industry, ranging from retail to finance to insurance.

Many reps work part time, and may work morning, evening, or late night shifts. These jobs are well suited for people who need a flexible work schedule.

Median Pay: $17.75 per hour

09 of 14

Delivery Services Truck Driver

Delivery services truck drivers pick up, transport, and drop off goods within a small geographic area, such as a county or city. Some drivers, known as light truck drivers, bring goods from a distribution center to various delivery locations.

Some drivers also serve as sales workers; they recommend products to their customers as they make deliveries. Drivers require a driver’s license, and typically receive brief on-the-job training.

Median Pay: $17.62 per hour

10 of 14

Grounds Maintenance Worker

Grounds maintenance workers take care of the health and beauty of various outdoor environments and indoor gardens. There are a number of types of grounds maintenance workers. Landscapers, for example, create or improve existing outdoor spaces, and groundskeepers maintain existing lands.

Some workers make more than others. For instance, tree trimmers and pruners can earn an average of $22.58 per hour. Most grounds maintenance jobs are seasonal, and are particularly busy during the spring, summer, and fall.

Median Pay: $17.05 per hour

11 of 14

Janitor

Janitors clean and maintain order within a building or specified area. Also known as custodians, they may work in schools, office buildings, hospitals, or a number of other buildings.

Some janitors are also responsible for performing small repairs, such as fixing leaky faucets. Most janitor positions do not require formal education; janitors typically learn through on-the-job experience.

Median Pay: $14.31 per hour

Note

A high-paying hourly job that is part-time may be a great addition to your full-time job if you’re looking to bring in more money to help pay down debt or save for a car or house.

12 of 14

Retail Salesperson

Retail sales workers sell merchandise such as clothing, furniture, and cars. Most salespersons do not require a formal education, but some employers prefer salespersons with a high school diploma or GED. Many salespersons work part time, and many work weekend and holiday shifts. Many salespeople receive a commission for selling goods, which increases their overall payment.

Median Pay: $14.03 per hour

13 of 14

Bartender

Bartenders serve drinks in bars, restaurants, wineries, or breweries. Many bartenders work part time, and most work evenings, weekends, and holidays.

Although bartenders are paid by the hour, with tips included, the number can amount to much more.

Median Pay: $12.67 per hour, plus tips

14 of 14

Waiter or Server

Waiters or servers take orders and serve food and beverages to patrons. They may work in restaurants, bars, hotels, or other food service places. Waiters may work part time or full time, and many work evenings, weekends, and holidays.

A waiter earns an average of $12.50 per hour directly from their employer, but they can earn much more with tips.

Median Pay: $12.50 per hour, plus tips

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are the highest paying part-time jobs?

The highest paying part-time jobs span a wide variety of industries, some of which require degrees and some that don’t. There are roles in the medical field such as dental assistant or medical assistant that pay well. You can also pursue service based roles such as working as a bartender or server. Corporate roles such as working as a financial clerk or administrative assistant can also be part-time, but pay well.

What are the highest paying jobs for students?

There are tons of great high paying jobs that students can qualify for without finishing their degree such as a bartender or server in a restaurant, retail salesperson, or customer service representative. Students can apply for a wide variety of jobs until they find one that offers an amount of pay they’re happy with.

Updated by
Jacqueline DeMarco
Jacqueline DeMarco
Jacqueline DeMarco has 7+ years of experience researching and writing dozens of articles. She covers investing, taxes, credit cards and scores, loans, banking, budgeting, and more for The Balance. Jacqueline has been published on LendingTree, Credit Karma, Fundera, Chime, MagnifyMoney, Student Loan Hero, ValuePenguin, SoFi, Northwestern Mutual, and more.
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Sources
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  1. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Financial Clerks.”

  2. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Secretaries and Administrative Assistants - Pay.”

  3. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Secretaries and Administrative Assistants.”

  4. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Dental Assistants.”

  5. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Construction Laborers and Helpers.”

  6. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Phlebotomists.”

  7. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Medical Assistants.”

  8. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Assemblers and Fabricators - Pay.”

  9. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Assemblers and Fabricators.”

  10. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Customer Service Representatives.”

  11. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Light Truck Drivers: Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2021.”

  12. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Delivery Truck Drivers and Driver/Sales Workers.”

  13. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Grounds Maintenance Workers - Pay.”

  14. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Grounds Maintenance Workers.”

  15. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Janitors and Building Cleaners.”

  16. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Retail Sales Workers.”

  17. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Bartenders.”

  18. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  “Waiters and Waitresses.”

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