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Working as a Public Works Director

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a public works director. For example, did you know that they make an average of $51.72 an hour? That's $107,573 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 6% and produce 150,600 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Public Works Director Do

There are certain skills that many public works directors have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, leadership skills and communication skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a public works director, we found that a lot of resumes listed 10.7% of public works directors included infrastructure, while 6.2% of resumes included general public, and 5.7% of resumes included building maintenance. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the public works director job title. But what industry to start with? Most public works directors actually find jobs in the government and hospitality industries.

How To Become a Public Works Director

If you're interested in becoming a public works director, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 33.3% of public works directors have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 27.6% of public works directors have master's degrees. Even though most public works directors have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a public works director. When we researched the most common majors for a public works director, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on public works director resumes include high school diploma degrees or associate degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a public works director. In fact, many public works director jobs require experience in a role such as project manager. Meanwhile, many public works directors also have previous career experience in roles such as project engineer or civil engineer.

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Average Salary$107,573
Job Growth Rate6%

Public Works Director Jobs

Public Works Director Career Paths

Top Careers Before Public Works Director

Top Careers After Public Works Director

Owner
7.4 %

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Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Public Works Director

Public Works Directors in America make an average salary of $107,573 per year or $52 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $158,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $73,000 per year.
Average Salary
$107,573

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary
Gilroy, CA
Salary Range113k - 197k$150k$149,637
Vancouver, WA
Salary Range108k - 176k$138k$138,065
Lees Summit, MO
Salary Range99k - 173k$131k$131,237
Dartmouth, MA
Salary Range98k - 174k$131k$131,030
Colorado Springs, CO
Salary Range96k - 167k$127k$127,010
Pharr, TX
Salary Range90k - 169k$124k$123,538
$78k
$197k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Assistant Public Works Director
Assistant Public Works Director
City of Ellensburg
City of Ellensburg
11/25/2020
11/25/2020
$82,52411/25/2020
$82,524
Public Works Director-City of
Public Works Director-City of
International City Management
International City Management
11/24/2020
11/24/2020
$119,56711/24/2020
$119,567
Director of Public Works
Director of Public Works
International City Management
International City Management
11/22/2020
11/22/2020
$145,53611/22/2020
$145,536
Deputy Public Works Director of Environmental Services
Deputy Public Works Director of Environmental Services
The City of Rochester, Mn
The City of Rochester, Mn
11/20/2020
11/20/2020
$114,77611/20/2020
$114,776
Director of Public Works
Director of Public Works
International City Management
International City Management
11/20/2020
11/20/2020
$96,05111/20/2020
$96,051
See More Recent Salaries

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Public Works Director Demographics

Gender

male

87.6 %

female

9.2 %

unknown

3.2 %

Ethnicity

White

77.0 %

Hispanic or Latino

9.6 %

Asian

6.6 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

88.9 %

Italian

11.1 %
See More Demographics

Public Works Director Education

Majors

Business
22.5 %

Degrees

Bachelors

33.3 %

Masters

27.6 %

High School Diploma

14.0 %

Top Colleges for Public Works Directors

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

3. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

4. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX

In-State Tuition
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

5. Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA

In-State Tuition
$55,465
Enrollment
6,483

6. New York University

New York, NY

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

7. George Washington University, The

Washington, DC

In-State Tuition
$55,230
Enrollment
12,161

8. University of Georgia

Athens, GA

In-State Tuition
$11,830
Enrollment
29,474

9. Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA

In-State Tuition
$18,454
Enrollment
40,108

10. Northeastern University

Boston, MA

In-State Tuition
$51,522
Enrollment
13,760
See More Education Info

Entry Level Jobs For Becoming A Public Works Director

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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Public Works Director

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 10.7% of public works directors listed infrastructure on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and leadership skills are important as well.

Best States For a Public Works Director

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a public works director. The best states for people in this position are Rhode Island, Ohio, California, and Washington. Public works directors make the most in Rhode Island with an average salary of $154,627. Whereas in Ohio and California, they would average $143,644 and $139,547, respectively. While public works directors would only make an average of $134,693 in Washington, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. California

Total Public Works Director Jobs:
340
Highest 10% Earn:
$222,000
Location Quotient:
1.7
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Rhode Island

Total Public Works Director Jobs:
4
Highest 10% Earn:
$238,000
Location Quotient:
0.73
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Washington

Total Public Works Director Jobs:
38
Highest 10% Earn:
$204,000
Location Quotient:
0.84
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Public Works Director Employers

1. United States Army
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$51,026
Public Works Directors Hired: 
16+
2. United States Navy
3.8
Avg. Salary: 
$45,973
Public Works Directors Hired: 
6+
3. Public Works Department
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$56,880
Public Works Directors Hired: 
4+
4. City of Davenport Government
3.7
Avg. Salary: 
$36,285
Public Works Directors Hired: 
3+
5. Fluor Corporation
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$80,487
Public Works Directors Hired: 
3+
6. Severn Trent
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$55,407
Public Works Directors Hired: 
3+

Public Works Director Videos

Recently Added Public Works Director Jobs

Updated October 2, 2020