Industrial-Organizational Psychology Careers

7 Unique Industrial-Organizational Jobs to Consider

Industrial-Organizational Psychology Careers

Industrial-organizational (I-O) psychology focuses on helping workplaces increase efficiency and satisfaction using psychological practices that improve relationships between employees and their management. The industry is growing in popularity, with a projected growth of 26 percent through 2018. But what roles are available in the field?

Industrial & Organizational Degree

Defining the career path for an industrial-organizational psychologist can be difficult; because the study of employees and workplaces has so many facets, I-O psychology professionals do all kinds of work for organizations of all sizes. However, here are seven common industrial-organizational jobs. Each of these jobs has its own unique facets, but all require a desire to help people and improve the way businesses work.

Personnel Analyst 

Personnel are critical to the success of any company, in a myriad of ways. Personnel analysts ensure that not only are the right people are being hired, but that companies are creating the right jobs in the right areas. This often involves significant data collection and research. Personnel analysts also analyze the on-boarding process and overall hiring strategies.

Indeed lists the average annual salary personnel analysts at $60,000 annually.

Research Consultant

Because so much of I-O psychology involves finding new ways to improve the performance and satisfaction of employees, research in the field continues to evolve.

Research consultants work with companies to understand how efficiently an organization is running. This may involve creating surveys for employees to complete, workplace observation or several other methods of data collection.

With this research, the consultant can report on organizational strengths and highlight areas for improvement.

According to the job search tool Indeed, research consultants make an average $78,000 annually.

Instructional Designer

When beginning a job, a thoughtful, thorough orientation can set employees up for success. A common role in the I-O industry is designing the instructional materials that accompany this process.

These instructional designers create training courses that take place both in classroom settings and online. This may include paper materials, computer modules and even instructional videos.

Successful designers create materials that orient new hires quickly and efficiently, allowing them to begin making an impact in their role more quickly.

Indeed lists the average annual salary for instructional designers at $65,000.

Organizational Consultant 

One factor that can affect employee productivity and effectiveness is the organizational structure of a company. Organizational consultants work with companies to optimize the hierarchy for the best possible workflow.

These consultants recognize issues overcrowding of teams, leadership confusion and redundancy.

Using concepts in industrial-organizational psychology, they’re able to create a more efficient hierarchy and improve employee effectiveness.

According to Indeed, organizational consultants earn an average annual salary of $102,000.

Talent Developer

Growing talent once it’s brought into an organization is a complicated process, but one that can yield real company growth.

The goal of a talent developer is to create company initiatives that help employees increase their skills and, in turn, encourage them to use that growth to improve their work.

This may involve the development of advanced training initiatives for employees long after on-boarding. It may also include the measurement and analysis of performance and identifying key areas of growth for employees.

Indeed lists the average annual salary for the job title talent developers at $97,000.

Industrial-Organizational Professor

With the field of industrial-organizational psychology expected to grow 26 percent by 2018, the need for instructors and professors in the field will also grow. I-O professors not only teach courses but also perform research in their area of expertise. Professors have the opportunity to make an impact on the field through teaching, discovering trends and measuring concepts.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, professors earn an average annual salary of $86,490.

A Degree for a Growing Field 

At Touro University Worldwide, we are committed to developing dynamic industrial- organizational psychology professionals to meet the growing demand.

Students in our industrial-organizational psychology programs will gain insight into modern I-O concepts and develop the tools needed to succeed in one of these roles, from highly trained professors with significant real world experience to share. Most importantly, Touro offers this quality education in a fully online format perfect for working professionals.

With our flexible class schedules and convenient online classroom, you can maintain your busy schedule while advancing your career. Discover how TUW can help you join this growing field by exploring our online industrial-organizational graduate program today.


What Can You Do With a Degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology?

Industrial-Organizational Psychology Careers

If you have an industrial-organizational (I/O) psychology degree, your main job duty will be to study employee attitudes and behaviors. Your industrial-organizational psychology degree may help you organize, supervise and conduct employee training sessions, perform human resource functions, improve company sales, enhance marketing strategies and aid in company restructuring.

You may also help companies hire employees that are most suited to the job and improve employee productivity, quality and satisfaction. So, what can you do with an industrial-organizational degree? Well, there are a variety of career paths that you can pursue. This article will help you decide what you want to do with your hard-earned degree.

What is an Industrial-Organizational Psychology Training Program?

An industrial-organizational psychology training program is offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

A bachelor’s degree in this field may provide you with the skills needed to work as an human resources executive, while a master’s degree or doctorate in this area may provide you the skills needed to work as a college professor, researcher, psychological consultant, etc.

With this degree you may work in the private sector or you may work for a government agency. It will take you approximately four years to earn a bachelor’s degree in industrial-organizational psychology, two or three years to earn a master’s degree and five to seven years to earn a doctorate (Ph.D. or Psy.D.).

You may be required to take courses in business management, psychology, sociology, marketing and human resources.

Even though a doctorate degree in industrial-organization is not required to seek employment, many employers prefer someone with an advanced degree, licensure and/or certification.

In addition, if you have a doctorate in this field, you are more ly to get the most opportunities and make the most amount of money per year.

Human Resources Executive/Employee Relations

You may be able to use your bachelor’s degree in industrial-organizational degree to help companies resolve co-worker conflicts and/or employee-management conflicts.

Due to your training and expertise in psychological principles, companies may hire you to help them better understand their employees. They may also hire you to help improve workplace morale and employee satisfaction.

In this capacity, your main responsibility will be to act as a liaison between employees and upper management. You may also be responsible for hiring, firing and/or promoting employees.


You may also use your industrial-organizational psychology degree to research business-related issues. Your main responsibilities will be to research company practices in an effort to improve productivity and quality within the workplace. Your primary function will be to develop more effective company policies and practices.

You may accomplish these tasks by distributing surveys to employees, interviewing employees and/or creating company focus groups. Your goal will be to assess employee and/or consumer satisfaction. To be effective in this career you will need to have a strong background in statistics, psychology and business management.

Consumer Psychologist

You may also use your doctorate in industrial-organizational to enter the world of consumer psychology. Your degree may help you analyze consumer preferences, motivations and purchases. A company may hire you to help them determine what consumers really want and need.

Related Reading: How to Become a Consumer Psychologist

It may also hire you to help convince consumers why a particular product will be beneficial for them. The majority of your time might be spent developing effective advertising and marketing strategies, studying the relationship between emotions and purchasing preferences and analyzing the influence of psychology when selecting a price-point for items.

Organizational Development Psychologist

The majority of people with an industrial-organizational degree work as organizational development psychologists. If you chose to apply your degree to this field, your main function will be to help companies restructure their policies and practices to fit a new merger or acquisition, increase revenue and/or improve employee satisfaction and company morale.

One of the perks of having a degree in industrial-organizational psychology is that you can work in a variety of different industries (medical, health, education, retail, marketing, automotive, etc.).

Your main job functions may include increasing employee productivity, developing training modules, creating and administering job assessments to potential employees, performing human resource duties, supervising research studies and/or teaching at a college or university.

You may also be responsible for helping companies select and/or weed out potential candidates and train new employees. Your main goal will be to help companies increase productivity and quality within the workplace.

You may also be required to help the company more clearly align its practices and policies with its vision and mission statement. In some cases, you may help companies with their firing process and/or work with employees with issues that are affecting their work performance.

College Professor

If you have a doctorate in industrial-organizational psychology, you may be able to enter the education field.

Many people with an industrial-organizational psychology degree work in a college or university.

You may be hired to teach courses in business and psychology and/or conduct business-related research studies (i.e. new testing assessment, intervention programs, and/or employee training modules).

Further Reading


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