Large majorities of optics and photonics workers enjoy their work (96%), find it meaningful (95%), and feel that their peers respect their work (93%). Most would recommend their field to their child or a friend (82%), feel they are paid fairly (78%), and perceive that promotions are handled fairly in their workplaces (71%).
While 78% of workers say they are paid fairly, only 61% are happy with their pay. The highest earners also enjoy their work the most—the median salary for the happiest respondents is $75,633 versus $62,698 for the least satisfied.
More than two-thirds of respondents feel they have an excellent work/life balance. Workers at 30-39 hours per week fall into the “sweet spot” for the balance between career and private life, with over 80% deeming it excellent. At the other end of the spectrum, only 44% of people working 55-59 hours per week agree that they have an excellent work/life balance.