Correctional officers are one of the least happy careers in the United States.

At CareerExplorer, we conduct an ongoing survey with millions of people and ask them how satisfied they are with their careers. As it turns out, correctional officers rate their career happiness 2.4 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 4% of careers.

To put this into perspective, we compared how happy correctional officers are to similar careers in the industry. Take a look at the results below:

Salaries and satisfaction ratings in similar careers

Career Satisfaction Avg Salary
Exterminator
2.5
$38k
Financial clerk
2.5
$39k
Underwriter
2.5
$68k
Teller
2.5
$29k
Host and hostess
2.5
$22k
Correctional officer
2.4
$42k
Food server
2.4
$27k
Postal service worker
2.4
$39k
Garbage collector
2.4
$38k
Vehicle cleaner
2.4
$26k

So what does it mean to be happy in your career? Let’s break it down into different dimensions:

  • Salary: Are correctional officers happy with their salary?
  • Meaning: Do correctional officers find their jobs meaningful?
  • Personality fit: How well suited are people’s personalities to their everyday tasks as correctional officers?
  • Work environment: How enjoyable are correctional officer’s work environments?
  • Skills utilization: Are correctional officers making the best use of their abilities?

Are correctional officers happy with their salary?