Surgical Technologist Salary Guide and Career Outlook

Surgical technologists in the United States earn $46,000 on a mean basis, while those in Canada average C$52,246 ($40,787 USD). The mean reaches £28,515 ($38,146 USD) in the United Kingdom, AU$69,041 ($52,585 USD) in Australia and NZD$57,894 ($40,494 USD) in New Zealand. In India, surgical technologist salary averages INR263,482 ($4,095 USD), while the mean is R145,227 ($10,762 USD) in South Africa.

surgical technologist salary

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make per Year by State?

Surgical Technologist Salary US Canada UK Australia New Zealand India South Africa
Hourly Pay $22.50 C$23 £14 AU$33.19 NZD$28 INR127 R70
Annual Pay $46,000 C$52,246 £28,515 AU$69,041 NZD$57,894 INR263,482 R145,227

Surgical Technologist Salary Influencing Factors

As surgical technologists are largely not self-employed, the particular employer and its size, location and resources will help shape a technologist’s pay. On a broader scale, geography, experience and whether the employer is in the private or public sector also differentiate pay among technologists.

1. Location

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, surgical technologists in Nevada rank first in pay, at$60,040, followed by California at $59,490. Among metropolitan areas, San Rafael and San Francisco lead with mean pay of $79,020 and $75,450 respectively. In fact, eight of the top ten metropolitan areas in the United States for surgical technologist salaries are situated in California.

For “Other Assisting Occupations in Support of Health Services” in Canada, including surgical technicians, the highest median hourly rate occurs in British Columbia, at C$22.00. New Brunswick has the lowest median at C$18.

Surgical technicians in Brisbane, Australia earn AU$62,877, which is considerably below the mean of AU$69,041 nationwide in Australia. In Sydney, the mean for these workers stands at NZD$73,495. The pay for surgical technicians in Wellington, New Zealand stands slightly above the national average, at NZD$58,236.

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in the US?

Surgical Technologist Salary US Per Year Per Hour
Minimum $31,270 $15.25
Maximum $64,800 $31.16
Bonus/Tip $153 to $3,119 $0.07 to $1.50
Overtime N/A $14.51 to $40.98
Total Pay $31,270 to $64,800

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in Canada?

Surgical Technologist Salary Canada Per Year Per Hour
Minimum C$37,000 C$17.79
Maximum C$73,000 C$35.10
Bonus/Tip N/A N/A
Overtime N/A N/A
Total Pay C$37,000 to C$73,000

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in the UK?

Surgical Technologist Salary UK Per Year Per Hour
Minimum £22,000 £10.58
Maximum £35,000 £16.83
Bonus/Tip £402 £0.19
Overtime N/A N/A
Total Pay £22,000 to £35,000

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in Australia?

Surgical Technologist Australia Per Year Per Hour
Minimum AU$51,145 AU$24.59
Maximum AU$84,139 AU$40.45
Bonus/Tip AU$973 AU$0.47
Overtime N/A N/A
Total Pay AU$51,145 to AU$85,112

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in New Zealand?

Surgical Technologist Salary New Zealand Per Year Per Hour
Minimum NZD$42,920 NZD$20.63
Maximum NZD$70,609 NZD$33.95
Bonus/Tip NZD$818 NZD$0.39
Overtime N/A N/A
Total Pay NZD$42,920 to NZD$71,427

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in India?

Surgical Technologist Salary India Per Year Per Hour
Minimum INR1,97,876 INR95.13
Maximum INR3,25,529 INR156.50
Bonus/Tip INR3,715 INR1.79
Overtime N/A N/A
Total Pay INR1,97,876 to INR 3,29,244

How Much Does a Surgical Technologist Make in South Africa?

Surgical Technologist Salary South Africa Per Year Per Hour
Minimum R108,333 R52.08
Maximum R178,221 R85.68
Bonus/Tip R2,048 R0.98
Overtime N/A N/A
Total Pay R108,333 to 180,269

2. Experience

In the United Kingdom, operating room practitioners, who perform the work of surgical technologists, start at 22,000 on a mean basis. Those deemed “Experienced” earn on average 28,000, while salaries for “Highly Experienced” operating room technicians rise to a mean of 35,000.

According to SalaryExpert, up to three years as a surgical technician results in a mean pay of AU$51,145. For eight years and beyond of experience, the mean climbs to AU$84,139. In New Zealand, the salaries based on the respective experience levels are NZD$42,920 and NZD$70,609.

Entry-level surgical technicians in India earn a mean of INR1,97,876 and senior-level ones capture pay of INR3,25,529. For surgical technicians in South Africa with up to three years on the job, the mean stands at R108,333. The salary for those with eight or more years of experience earn on a mean basis R178,221 per year.

3. Industry

Hospitals and surgical centers employ the predominate number of surgical technologists. In the United States, seven out of ten work in these settings, with salaries averaging $46,310 in 2016. Physicians offices and outpatient centers that perform some surgical work each employ 11 percent of these technologists.

Most operating room practitioners in the United Kingdom work in hospitals operated under the National Health Service’s auspices. In New Zealand, local District Boards of Health employ surgical technologists for hospitals.

India’s health system includes a mix of public and private providers, which means that surgical technologists can find work either in public sector hospitals or privately-run facilities. Technologists in the latter generally earn more than in publicly-funded facilities. Due to generally low-levels of public health care spending in India, public hospitals and those served by them face shortages of surgical professionals.

Schedule & Working Hours

Surgical technologists normally work full-time. In Canada, nearly 74 percent of those in “Other Assisting Occupations in Support of Health Services,” which includes surgical technicians, are full-time employees. This is less than the 81 percent full-time rate in the overall workforce.

In Australia, full-time “Medical Technicians,” which include surgical or operating theatre technicians, log on average 36.1 hours per week.

As most work in hospitals, these workers can expect early morning, evenings, weekends and holidays. Hospitals schedule surgeries at many hours and various incidents require emergency surgery. Occurrences of emergencies also require surgical technologists to be on call for emergency surgeries. Shifts can last eight hours or more at a time.

Bonuses & Benefits

Generally, employers afford full-time surgical technologists retirement and insurance benefits. According to PayScale, 79 percent of U.S. surgical technologists have medical care via employers. Seven in ten get dental benefits and six in ten enjoy vision coverage from the employer.

Surgical technologists can find employers who afford incentives for taking jobs. For example, the Hospital Corporation of America in the United States advertises signing bonuses and relocation incentives to its hires. Glassdoor posts a full-time surgical technologist position with Holmes Regional Medical Center of Melborne, Australia, offering an AU$5,000 signing bonus.

Career Outlook

With people living longer and with greater access to health care in certain areas will come more surgeries. Certain areas encounter shortages of surgical technologists. These factors will sustain demand for surgical technologists across the board.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics places the number of surgical technologists in the United States at 107,000 in 2016. That figure should grow by 12 percent, resulting in 12,600 additional workers in the field by 2026.

According to Job Outlook Australia, the “Medical Technicians” field, which includes surgical or operating theatre technicians, had 30,200 occupants in 2015. The number could reach 39,000 by 2020.

The shortage of surgical facilities and surgeons may stunt the hiring potential of technologists despite the high demand for surgical services. With a shortage of physicians and surgeons may come lack of hiring for technicians to aid in the surgeries. As reported by The National, nearly eight out of ten community health centers in India lack a surgeon. As of 2015, India was short 750,000 physicians to meet the population’s needs. To find higher pay, physicians from India often migrate to other countries.


Seekers of surgical technologist jobs will see generally a strong demand for their services. In some places, a lack of surgical centers or surgeons may cause positions to be scarce. Overall, pay for surgical technologists should be in the lower ranks of medical professional, but benefits and bonuses constitute a possibility.

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