Police Officers are one of the most common jobs in America. Additionally, a significant number of people work as police officers in every state in the union — it’s not like they are all just concentrated in California or the South.
Since police officers are such a prominent occupation, we at Zippia wanted to look at where police officers have it the best: where there are plenty of jobs to go around and people get paid what they deserve during every phase of their career.
To that end, we dove into the numbers from the BLS to figure out which states have the best opportunities for police officers.
After all the numbers had been crunched, we were left with this list of the best of best for America’s police officers:
So there you have it — Police And Sheriff’s Patrol Officers is the best of the best when it comes to being a police officer.
How did Police And Sheriff’s Patrol Officers end up here and does it really deserve this ranking? Read on to see how we completed our research on the best states for police officers and for more on the top ten states.
If you’re interested, you can read more about the job scene here:
Here at Zippia, we talk to a lot of people of all different backgrounds looking for jobs. Our research has concluded that there are two common things people want in a job:
So in order to find out the best states for police officers in America we needed to figure out where the jobs are and how well police officers get paid. This led to the following criteria taken from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’s Occupational Employment Statistics for 2016:
To make all the salary numbers more apples to apples across states, we compared the salary data relative to the state’s cost of living.
Applying this standardization allows us to account for that fact that it costs more to live in certain in states. For example, the average salary for police officers in California is $96,660 and the average salary in Illinois is $70,850, but the Illinois salary actually goes further in paying for life’s essentials.
In order to develop and overall ranking, we ranked each state for each criteria from 1 to 50 where 1 was the best.
We then averaged all the rankings for a state into a Job Score with the state having the lowest overall Job Score earning the distinction of being the best state for police officers in America.
So without further ado, let’s get into just what made each state so great for police officers.
Total Jobs: 32,780
Average Annual Salary: $70,850
Average Entry Level Salary: $37,500
Average Experienced Salary: $99,650
Location Quotient: 1.19
Total Jobs: 70,790
Average Annual Salary: $96,660
Average Entry Level Salary: $61,010
Average Experienced Salary: $129,690
Location Quotient: 0.95
Total Jobs: 62,580
Average Annual Salary: $60,350
Average Entry Level Salary: $38,020
Average Experienced Salary: $81,950
Location Quotient: 1.14
Total Jobs: 21,390
Average Annual Salary: $87,490
Average Entry Level Salary: $44,300
Average Experienced Salary: $126,170
Location Quotient: 1.15
Total Jobs: 4,560
Average Annual Salary: $72,040
Average Entry Level Salary: $48,870
Average Experienced Salary: $98,350
Location Quotient: 0.77
Total Jobs: 1,810
Average Annual Salary: $66,440
Average Entry Level Salary: $43,640
Average Experienced Salary: $92,070
Location Quotient: 0.88
Total Jobs: 11,550
Average Annual Salary: $62,470
Average Entry Level Salary: $43,470
Average Experienced Salary: $80,030
Location Quotient: 0.93
Total Jobs: 9,210
Average Annual Salary: $76,340
Average Entry Level Salary: $52,040
Average Experienced Salary: $100,120
Location Quotient: 0.64
Total Jobs: 9,360
Average Annual Salary: $68,290
Average Entry Level Salary: $44,650
Average Experienced Salary: $92,480
Location Quotient: 0.8
Total Jobs: 26,970
Average Annual Salary: $65,130
Average Entry Level Salary: $33,870
Average Experienced Salary: $94,950
Location Quotient: 1.0
If you’re looking to start out your career as a police officer these are the states that should be at the top of your list. You’ll find high pay, available jobs, and chances for career advancement.
If you’re curious, here are the worst states to be a police officer in America:
For more reading, check out: