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What is the highest executive assistant salary?

Executive assistants provide high-level administrative support to executives and managers. They handle scheduling, correspondence, research, and overall office management. Executive assistant salaries can vary greatly depending on factors like location, industry, experience level, and company size. However, top executive assistants at the largest companies can make well into six figures.

What is the average executive assistant salary?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average annual salary for executive assistants in the United States as of May 2021 was $66,080. The average hourly wage was $31.79. This data encompasses executive assistants across all industries and company sizes.

Here is a breakdown of average executive assistant salaries by industry according to BLS data:

Industry Average Annual Salary
Finance and insurance $71,530
Professional, scientific, and technical services $69,950
Manufacturing $66,840
Healthcare and social assistance $47,030

As shown, executive assistants in industries like finance and professional services tend to earn higher salaries on average. Geographic location also impacts salaries. Executive assistant pay is highest in major metropolitan areas.

What skills and qualifications do top-paid executive assistants have?

To earn the highest salaries, executive assistants typically have:

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher education
  • 3+ years of experience supporting executives
  • Excellent organization and time management abilities
  • Impeccable communication skills, both verbal and written
  • Discretion and confidentiality
  • Proficiency with office software and tools
  • Project coordination experience
  • Research and reporting skills
  • Ability to work independently and proactively

Advanced skills like budgeting, financial analysis, and human resources processes will also make an executive assistant more valuable and employable at a higher salary level.

What types of executives do top executive assistants support?

The highest-paying executive assistant roles support C-suite executives at large corporations and organizations. Specifically, top salaries are found supporting:

  • Chief Executive Officers (CEOs)
  • Chief Financial Officers (CFOs)
  • Chief Operating Officers (COOs)
  • Chief Information Officers (CIOs)
  • Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs)
  • Chief Human Resources Officers (CHROs)
  • Chief Legal Officers (CLOs)

Assistants to these top-level executives earn high salaries because these roles require expertise, confidentiality, and the ability to handle sensitive situations. Supporting a CEO or CFO comes with great responsibility and pressure.

What industries offer executive assistants the highest pay?

The industries offering the highest salaries for executive assistants are:

  • Finance and insurance: At top investment banks and financial institutions, executive assistant salaries range from $80,000 to $120,000.
  • Tech: At tech giants like Google, Facebook, and Apple, executive assistants earn $90,000 to $150,000.
  • Entertainment: Assistants to studio heads, producers, agents, and talent can make $80,000 to $250,000.
  • Aviation/aerospace: Assistants at top aircraft and defense companies earn $75,000 to $125,000.
  • Pharmaceuticals: Executive assistants at major drug companies make $85,000 to $130,000.
  • Energy: Oil, gas, and utility companies pay assistants $80,000 to $120,000.

The highest salaries directly correlate with company revenue, profit margins, and executive compensation levels.

Other high-paying industries include:

  • Law firms
  • Management consulting firms
  • Hospitals and health systems
  • Higher education
  • Professional sports teams

How much do executive assistants make at top companies?

Here are examples of published executive assistant salary ranges at well-known companies:

Company Salary Range
JPMorgan Chase $83,000 – $136,000
Bank of America $92,000 – $140,000
Google $113,000 – $185,000
Apple $103,000 – $180,000
Johnson & Johnson $80,000 – $125,000
Toyota $95,000 – $135,000
UnitedHealth Group $88,000 – $118,000
NBCUniversal $90,000 – $150,000
Delta Air Lines $75,000 – $110,000

As shown, six-figure executive assistant salaries are common among elite corporations, especially in banking, tech, entertainment, and healthcare.

What is the salary range for executive assistants to CEOs?

Executive assistants make the highest salaries when supporting chief executives such as CEOs, presidents, and founders at major corporations. Here are typical CEO executive assistant salary ranges:

  • Fortune 500 companies – $120,000 to $250,000+
  • S&P 500 companies – $140,000 to $220,000+
  • Startups valued over $1 billion – $150,000 to $275,000+
  • Private equity firms – $130,000 to $200,000+
  • Hedge funds – $150,000 to $300,000+
  • Venture capital firms – $120,000 to $220,000+

The highest salaries are found at major publicly traded corporations and large investment firms, where CEO compensation can be in the tens of millions.

Factors impacting CEO executive assistant salary include:

  • Industry – Banking and finance tend to pay the most
  • Location – New York City and San Francisco pay the highest salaries
  • Company size and revenue
  • Years of experience
  • Education background

A top CEO assistant with an MBA and years of experience supporting executives can potentially earn over $300,000, especially in industries like investment banking and hedge funds.

What other benefits do executive assistants receive?

In addition to high salaries, top executive assistants enjoy outstanding benefits packages from their employers. Common benefits include:

  • Bonuses – Up to 20% or more of salary as an annual bonus
  • Equity – Stock options or grants, especially at startups
  • Paid time off – 3-6 weeks of vacation plus sick time
  • Insurance – Comprehensive health, dental, and vision insurance
  • Retirement – Pension plans and 401(k) matching contributions
  • Wellness perks – Gym memberships, massages, counseling
  • Tuition assistance – For advanced degree and certification programs

Many also receive generous allowances for travel, dining, entertainment, car services, and other expenses when supporting executives.

What is the job outlook for executive assistants?

The job outlook for executive assistants over the next decade is strong. According to the BLS, employment of executive assistants and other secretary/admin roles is projected to grow 9% from 2020 to 2030, keeping pace with the average for all occupations.

Demand will be steady as businesses continue needing support staff for executives and managers. Professional industries and large corporate headquarters will have the most openings.

Well-qualified candidates with bachelor’s degrees, specialized skills, and the ability to handle high-pressure environments will be most in demand. Those willing to relocate to major hubs and travel frequently with executives will have the best job prospects and earning potential.


In summary, top executive assistant salaries reach well into six figures at the highest levels, especially when supporting CEOs and C-suite executives at Fortune 500 companies and elite financial institutions. The very highest salaries exceed $200,000 to $300,000 for those with advanced education, specialized expertise, and proven ability to manage complex executive offices under pressure. Industries like banking, tech, healthcare, and energy tend to pay executive assistants the most. While demanding, the job outlook remains strong for skilled executive assistants seeking high pay and excellent benefits supporting top executives.