The best paying jobs in basic industries remain some of the most lucrative careers available today, and if you’re looking to earn a substantial income, these jobs may be right up your alley.
If you’re ready to jump into the workforce and start making money, you may think that the best jobs are in technology or engineering fields. While that may be true, they aren’t the only ones that pay well.
Basic industries can offer some of the best-paying jobs out there if you know what to look for and are willing to put in the time to learn them.
We’ve done all our research and compiled a list of some of the best paying jobs in the basic industries, and these are the top 21 highest-paying jobs.
Some of these jobs are good careers for men, especially in the United States.
Here’s what you will get from this article.
If you have been looking for some of the easy high paying jobs in basic industries, this article has something for you.
Let’s get to it.
- Top 21 Best Paying Jobs in Miscellaneous (2022)
- Top 21 Best Paying Jobs in Consumer Durables (2022)
- 21 Best Paying Jobs in Public Utilities (2022)
What are Basic Industries?
Basic industries are industrial sectors that provide fundamental economic input to a country’s development, such as energy and infrastructure.
We can classify the basic industries into primary (extractive) and secondary (manufacturing).
Primary basic industries include agriculture, forestry, fishing, and mining.
In contrast, Secondary basic industries involve refining raw materials and manufacturing parts and tools out of raw materials for other industrial processes or products.
Examples of secondary basic industries include cement, steel, wood pulp, and paper.
We also have a third category of basic industries called tertiary or service-based industries.
High value-added services typically use highly skilled labor to produce complex products and services like finance, insurance, real estate, and computer software.
The tertiary sector includes retail trade, restaurants, hotels, transportation services, etc.
The quaternary industry is also emerging, which involves knowledge services that develop new applications based on scientific research at universities and government laboratories, including biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, etc.
Quaternary industry activities also add value by improving existing products through reengineering, but they do not produce final goods like cars or clothes that consumers can purchase in stores.
What are the Best Paying Jobs in Basic Industries?
While the high-tech industry might be the most talked about in the sector of the job market, there are plenty of opportunities for workers to earn above-average paychecks in basic industries as well.
The following are the 21 best-paying jobs in basic industries.
Medical Assistant professionals play a vital role in healthcare, and it is one of the best paying jobs in basic industries.
They schedule appointments, keep medical records, maintain patient files and insurance billing records, administer injections, and help patients dress and undress.
Medical assistants may also perform routine lab tests or surgical procedures under a doctor’s supervision.
In addition, their administrative duties also do some clinical work (e.g., taking vitals) and being responsible for sterilizing instruments used by doctors or nurses.
The average salary for medical assistants is $37,000 per year.
Nuclear Medicine Technologists
Nuclear medicine technologist is another best paying job in basic industries with an annual salary of $85,000.
The job of a Nuclear medicine technologist is to utilize medical imaging technology to create images of patients’ bodies.
These specialists administer radioactive drugs to patients for diagnostic purposes and analyze their tissue, blood, and urine.
In addition to working with nuclear medicine, these workers may also perform mammograms or ultrasounds and examine X-rays.
Most nuclear medicine technologists work full-time Monday through Friday during regular business hours, but some positions require around-the-clock coverage and on-call duty.
These professionals generally don’t need a bachelor’s degree.
Still, they must complete formal training programs at accredited schools or be certified by a national body such as the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT).
Automotive Glass Installers & Repairers
Another best paying job in basic industries is automotive glass installers and repairers.
These professionals are responsible for installing, removing, and repairing automotive windows, sunroofs, windshields, and rearview mirrors.
This is a very physically demanding job as it requires working with heavy machinery and carrying large pieces of glass.
Depending on their experience and knowledge, automotive glass installers and repairers may earn an average of $55,000 yearly.
Automotive glass installers and repairers are good careers for men and are likely to work on a contract basis.
They typically do not require any formal education; however, some employers prefer to hire people who have graduated from technical schools with certification in auto glass installation or auto body repair.
Morticians, Undertakers, & Funeral Directors
Our number next best-paying jobs in basic industries are the Morticians, undertakers, and funeral directors, and their job is to prepare bodies for burial or cremation.
When working on a deceased body, these workers disinfect and shave it. So it is like this kind of easy high paying jobs.
According to Comparably, funeral directors, morticians, and undertakers in the U.S. make an average salary of $114,000 per year
They take measurements to ensure that the clothing fits appropriately, after which they place it in a casket.
If necessary, morticians embalm bodies to slow down decay and preserve them for viewing at funerals.
Funeral directors work with families to pick out caskets and mausoleums; they also book spaces for visitation at cremation sites.
Air Traffic Controllers
Another best paying jobs in basic industries is air traffic controller.
You’ve probably heard that air traffic controllers earn some of the highest salaries among government workers.
Indeed, the average annual pay for an air traffic controller is more than $45,000 in the United States.
However, not all positions have equal regarding salary and working conditions.
The FAA has several levels of certification for its career employees, with senior controllers holding more responsibility and making more money than entry-level employees.
The number of jobs for air traffic controllers is likely to grow 7% by 2022, which means there are opportunities out there for those who have what it takes to become one.
Emergency Management Directors
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there are approximately 8,200 people employed as emergency management directors across America who earn an average salary of $100,520/year.
Emergency management directors help ensure that communities and regions are ready for natural disasters and other emergencies such as weather events, terrorist attacks, or hazardous material spills.
Their duties include coordinating response efforts among firefighters, police officers, and other agencies during natural disasters and coordinating disaster recovery efforts afterward.
They also work with building safety inspectors to develop emergency escape routes from buildings during fires or other emergencies like earthquakes.
To become an emergency management director, you are going to need at least a bachelor’s degree in public administration, business administration, or a related field such as criminal justice administration.
You may need a master’s degree to become one. This job requires strong organizational skills because emergency management directors coordinate multiple agencies during disasters.
And emergencies like tornadoes, hurricanes, and terrorist attacks—and they must ensure that everyone works together effectively while respecting each other’s roles.
Osteopathic physician is one of the highest-paying and best paying jobs in basic industries.
These physicians and surgeons are licensed to diagnose and treat health problems as many different medical specialists.
Osteopathic physicians diagnose illnesses, prescribe treatments based on their findings, and perform surgery when necessary.
They may also choose not to do any treatment if it would be ineffective or dangerous for their patients.
Osteopathic physicians practice within an allopathic medicine model, working with conventional western medicine and standard pharmaceuticals.
While working with various tools, these practitioners emphasize preventative care to manage long-term illnesses.
With more training comes better pay: According to 2022 statistics from Comparably, starting annual salary for full-time osteopathic physicians is $215,000
EMTs & Paramedics
If you’re looking for a low-stress job that lets you shift your hours around, becoming an EMT or paramedic is good.
Paramedics and EMTs can provide initial on-scene care and transport patients to hospitals.
Paramedics generally need more training and education than EMTs to carry more advanced medical equipment.
There isn’t much of a difference between EMT and Paramedic positions in terms of the work environment—they also need help when transporting patients.
EMTs and paramedics earn a median annual salary of $59,000.
Median salary refers to half of all emergency medical technicians and paramedics making more than that amount and a half making less.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that those employed by local governments report average salaries up to about 20% higher than other EMTs.
Petroleum geologists are high on this list, and they are one of the best paying jobs in basic industries.
This is another good career for men, but it is not one of the easy high paying jobs; however, it’s the highest-paying job.
The job market for petroleum geologists has been weak for several years, but it is likely to improve somewhat over the next few years. The BLS expects about 40% growth by 2022 in that sector.
Petroleum geologists do not have to worry much about competition from big businesses because most work for independent companies that are not part of any cartel.
A good average salary of a petroleum geologist is probable to be $109,000, and the average annual salary range from $97,000 to $119,000 depending on company size and job performance.
After you’ve finished your training, which can range from a few months to three years, most electricians earn $24.04 an hour or more—and they’re usually employed full-time.
Wages vary widely depending on where you live.
An entry-level job in San Francisco, the United States, for example, pays $17 an hour; meanwhile, hourly rates in Boston and Seattle average around $30.
Many electricians work 40 hours a week—at least once they have some experience under their belts—but overtime is also often available.
Full-time employment is likely for electricians who work for commercial contractors.
The average annual salary for agronomists is $82,500 as of April 2022.
Most work full time and may be called upon to conduct research at a college or university or advise farmers on how to increase crop yields. This is one of the easy high paying jobs in 2022.
Agronomists employed by government agencies perform many of the same duties but usually as part of a research team.
They also participate in environmental conservation projects and assist farmers with governmental regulations regarding water use, pesticide applications, and other agricultural activities.
The median annual wage for those working for companies that provide services such as pest control or cleaning was $40,000 in May 2022.
Pipefitter is one of the best paying jobs in basic industries, and it is also one of the good careers for men.
The median pay for pipefitters is $45,000 per year in the United States, and this also varies depending on the state.
Pipefitters work primarily with copper, steel, and stainless steel pipes to distribute water and gas throughout homes and buildings.
These professionals commonly install new piping or repair older systems in regular maintenance cycles.
While many workers must complete an apprenticeship program before obtaining a journeyman license, most training is on-the-job.
This is another highest-paying job. Metallurgists’ starting salaries typically range from $64,310 to $86,510 a year.
A master’s degree is usually essential for entry-level positions, and employers prefer a Ph.D. at top-paying companies.
Metals research is an essential aspect of modern engineering so that graduates can get jobs at research labs and metal product manufacturers alike.
Metallurgists were one of Indeed’s most popular job titles in January 2022.
You could also move up to Senior Metallurgist or Principal Metallurgist as you gain experience and expertise over time—but all of these positions require advanced degrees or technical certifications.
The median pay for an agricultural chemist is $68,000, higher than average for most professions and about $20,000 more than other chemists.
Agricultural chemists look at crops, soil, and water to ensure that crops are grown with proper fertilizers.
This job is essential because farmers need to know which type of fertilizer will give them maximum yield on their land and under given conditions.
Agricultural chemistry can practice in labs or out on farms.
Health and Safety Officer
This is another best paying jobs in basic industries. Occupational health and safety officers ensure that workers are safe at their jobs.
The Health and Safety officer’s job involves training, making sure equipment is up to code, performing inspections, and writing reports about dangerous conditions.
If a worker is injured or killed on the job, a health and safety officer might investigate and make recommendations for future improvements.
Health and safety officers usually work for government agencies such as city or county governments, but some work directly for companies that do business with government agencies.
The average salary of a health and safety officer is $56,060. However, top earners can earn up to $106,160 per year.
A mining engineering job is one of the highest paying jobs in basic industries with an average annual pay of $81,000 in the United States.
As a mining engineer, you’ll be responsible for overseeing various processes at mines and drilling sites.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that nearly 10,000 new mining jobs will be available by 2018; according to their research, 2% of those openings will go to engineers.
Since many engineering positions require a four-year degree (in addition to other qualifications), potential miners with a technical background might demand from companies who want experienced help.
Mining engineers also have demanding working conditions; most work outdoors at remote locations, sometimes for weeks or months. It’s one of the best paying jobs in manufacturing.
Regardless of job stability, though, professional associations rank mining engineers as one of their top jobs and other high-paying positions like petroleum engineer and nuclear engineer.
Conservation Scientists and Foresters
The average yearly wage for conservation scientists and foresters was $53,390 in May 2012.
The average wage is when half of the workers earn more than that amount and half earn less. 10% earn less than $28,610, and the highest 10% earn more than $90,080.
Indeed, it is one of the highest paying jobs.
In May 2021, almost 40,000 people worked as conservation scientists and foresters. Their job was to supervise activities concerned with protecting forests and other natural resources such as fish or wildlife.
Another best paying jobs in basic industries is the logging work.
The average logging worker makes between $28,000 and $70,000 per year.
However, some of these workers can make up to $90,000 and more with overtime pay.
Their earnings vary based on experience level and geographic location.
They often work long hours and must deal with harsh weather conditions when working outdoors.
Logging workers must also possess physical strength and stamina for their job duties.
Suppose you are interested in becoming a logging worker but don’t have any experience or training.
In that case, it is often possible to get hired at an entry-level position through an apprenticeship program offered by local schools or industry professionals.
An education from one of these programs can help you secure a job that offers full benefits and access to additional training opportunities down the road.
Computer systems analyst
If you’re a tech-savvy whiz with solid communication skills, then a job as a computer systems analyst could be right up your alley.
The average salary is $79,500, but you can easily earn six figures if you get into specialized jobs like database or network analysis or programming and consulting.
Computer systems analysts are often forecasting future demands for computing hardware and software.
They design custom I.T. solutions to fit specific business needs and ensure existing systems are compatible with new technologies.
If you’ve got a skill or ability for computers and an interest in your community—this could be just one of the best paying jobs in basic industries.
A truck driver is one of the best paying jobs in basic industries and one of America’s best-paying blue-collar jobs.
According to Glassdoor, it’s also one of its most stressful—and that’s putting it lightly.
Becoming a truck driver is also one of the good careers for men in the United States.
As a truck driver, you must deal with weather conditions, breakdowns, accidents, and traffic jams while meeting strict deadlines.
Salary varies greatly depending on location, company, and experience.
According to Glassdoor, a truck driver’s average salary ranges from $52,000 to $64,000 per year.
Most drivers prefer regional routes over long-haul drives because of frequent stopping points and fewer hours spent behind the wheel.
Route drivers also tend to make less than team drivers who work directly for shipping companies and have direct contact with shippers;
these drivers can earn more than those working at a trucking terminal or transport hub.
Drilling engineers is another best paying jobs in basic industries.
These professionals work with companies to install oil and gas wells and help to identify profitable new areas to drill.
The average yearly salary of drilling engineers is about $113,860 – $210,440 and about $132,000 on average in the United States.
They direct workers who use tools such as high-pressure water hoses, rotary rigs, pulverizers, and drills. Drillers learn by apprenticeship.
There are several ways to become an engineer
- you can attend college,
- complete an internship,
- or apprentice with a company for several years (if there’s no four-year program nearby).
According to BLS (the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics), the demand for engineers will likely increase by 9% in the next three years — much faster than the average for all occupations.
5 Well-Paying Jobs in Basic Industries You May Have Never Considered
The jobs that seem to pay the best may not always be the careers you’d expect. For example, your child’s high school math teacher might make more than the doctor down the road, while a mechanic may earn more than an accountant with years of experience on the job.
The key to finding great-paying jobs in basic industries starts with knowing what those basic industries are and understanding how they work from within.
Let’s take a look at five well-paying jobs in basic industries that you may have never considered before.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, manufacturing jobs are currently the best paying for those who are looking for work.
The mean annual wage for a worker in the manufacturing industry is $67,720. Manufacturing jobs typically require at least some postsecondary education and experience on the job.
One of the best paying jobs in transportation is a truck driver. Whether you’re driving for yourself or someone else, truck drivers are one of the most paid professions in this industry.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you can expect to make about $1,200 more than the average salary.
Freight Truck Drivers and Driver/Sales Workers account for around 1 million jobs each and pay an average annual salary of $49,140 and $43,360 respectively.
A construction worker’s job is to build structures of various shapes and sizes.
Construction workers may work on a team or independently and usually wear many different types of clothing. They help create everything from homes to commercial buildings, to bridges.
Some construction workers specialize in one area of the trade, such as carpentry or insulation installation. The construction industry pays well with laborers earning an average of $25 per hour and plumbers earning an average of $30 per hour.
4. Food service
If you’re looking for a job in the food service industry, consider becoming a waiter or waitress. Waiters and waitresses earn an average of $14.92 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Another option is to become a cook or chef, where you’ll typically earn around $12.65 per hour on average. These are some of the highest paying jobs in basic industries you might have never considered!
5. Wholesale Trade
- A career in the wholesale trade industry may seem to be a nonessential industry, but the numbers don’t lie.
The demand for goods and services will only increase as economies continue to grow and develop. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in this sector are expected to grow by 15% by 2020.
This means that there will be more opportunities for you as well.