These Are The 10 States With The Highest Server Salaries For 2017

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Rankings, Salaries - 1 year ago
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Without fail, in surveys across basically every demographic, the number one most important aspect of a job for most people is the salary — how much do servers get paid where I live?

And while there are many things to go into how much you, specifically, can expect to make, there’s really good data for average salaries for servers by state across America broken down by seniority level. So while your city may be slightly different than the state average, these averages give you a rough sense of what to expect for your salary.

To better understand how server salaries change across America, we decided to take a look the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on average pay for servers by state.

Additionally, we wanted to adjust the salary based on the cost of living in a state — because your salary goes further in North Carolina than it does in California.

The state with the best salary for servers after this adjustment? That would be Michigan. Here’s a quick snapshot of the top ten states for server salaries:

  1. Michigan
  2. West Virginia
  3. Minnesota
  4. Kentucky
  5. North Dakota
  6. Washington
  7. Illinois
  8. Nebraska
  9. Indiana
  10. Wyoming

Let’s take a look at how we got here and a full ranking of all the states.

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How we determined server pay by state

As we mentioned earlier, we took the average annual salary data for servers from the 2015 Bureau of Labor Statistics — specifically their “Occupational Employment Statistics”.

To make the comparison of salaries apples to apples across states, we also took into account the cost of living in each state.

We then created an index by dividing the average wage for a state by the cost of living relative to average. As an example, the cost of living index in California is 135.9 and the average pay is $30,140, so our index value would be:

$30,140 * (100 / 135.9) = $22,178

We then ranked every state on this criteria with the state with the highest salary index ranking as highest average salary for servers.

Here’s a look at the full ranking for all states.

Detailed List Of Server Salaries By State

Rank State Adjusted Salary Average Wage Cost Of Living
1 Michigan $27,764 $24,710 89.0
2 West Virginia $27,152 $25,360 93.4
3 Minnesota $25,634 $25,840 100.8
4 Kentucky $25,425 $23,010 90.5
5 North Dakota $25,100 $24,950 99.4
6 Washington $24,458 $25,730 105.2
7 Illinois $24,196 $22,890 94.6
8 Nebraska $24,181 $22,150 91.6
9 Indiana $24,078 $21,550 89.5
10 Wyoming $23,921 $21,960 91.8
11 Nevada $23,901 $24,690 103.3
12 Idaho $23,887 $22,000 92.1
13 South Dakota $23,722 $24,600 103.7
14 Georgia $23,708 $21,670 91.4
15 Tennessee $23,210 $20,750 89.4
16 Florida $23,001 $22,610 98.3
17 New York $22,938 $30,050 131.0
18 Iowa $22,824 $20,770 91.0
19 Alabama $22,774 $20,770 91.2
20 Ohio $22,761 $21,350 93.8
21 Delaware $22,702 $23,020 101.4
22 Oklahoma $22,634 $20,190 89.2
23 Utah $22,387 $20,820 93.0
24 Colorado $22,302 $23,150 103.8
25 Missouri $22,245 $20,110 90.4
26 Arkansas $22,215 $19,350 87.1
27 California $22,178 $30,140 135.9
28 Mississippi $21,990 $18,890 85.9
29 Arizona $21,928 $21,490 98.0
30 Oregon $21,877 $25,290 115.6
31 Pennsylvania $21,794 $22,100 101.4
32 Connecticut $21,769 $27,800 127.7
33 Wisconsin $21,683 $20,990 96.8
34 Texas $21,642 $19,630 90.7
35 Vermont $21,610 $26,170 121.1
36 Montana $21,557 $21,730 100.8
37 North Carolina $21,267 $19,970 93.9
38 Kansas $20,945 $18,830 89.9
39 Virginia $20,555 $20,720 100.8
40 Louisiana $20,495 $19,430 94.8
41 Rhode Island $20,347 $24,560 120.7
42 South Carolina $20,292 $20,130 99.2
43 Maine $19,828 $21,970 110.8
44 Massachusetts $19,715 $26,300 133.4
45 New Mexico $19,709 $19,020 96.5
46 New Jersey $19,696 $24,010 121.9
47 Maryland $18,836 $23,640 125.5
48 New Hampshire $18,666 $21,840 117.0
49 Alaska $17,856 $23,410 131.1
50 Hawaii $17,814 $29,910 167.9

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