Garbage collectors 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, garbage collectors rate their career happiness 2.4 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 3% of careers.

To put this into perspective, we compared how happy garbage collectors 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
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
Postal service clerk
2.3
$44k
Customer service representative
2.3
$29k
Retail salesperson
2.3
$23k

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

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

Are garbage collectors happy with their salary?