Hi and welcome to the ultimate Director of Nursing article.
Our comprehensive write-up will explore the average Nursing Director’s salaries in different states and cities, including factors that affect their salary range.
By the end of this article, you will be able to make informed decisions regarding the Director of Nursing Career path.
We will explore the following areas.
- Average Nursing Director Salary by state
- Highest-paying cities for Nursing Directors
Let’s dive right in.
A Nursing Director is an essential member of the healthcare system and provides vital health services.
Nursing Directors, usually Registered Nurses, couple their vast Nursing experience and excellent management skills to run Nursing departments.
As critical players in the healthcare administration field, Directors of Nursing earn significantly higher salaries than other Nursing professionals.
But exactly how much does a Director of Nursing make?
Read on for the answer to this question and much more.
Average Director of Nursing Salaries
Nursing Directors are among the most highly paid Nursing professionals due to the high training and experience necessary for Nursing Administration.
Here is a look at the average national Director of Nursing pay in the US.
The Average Salary for a Director of Nursing is $96746 per annum.
Here is the typical Director of Nursing Salary breakdown according to Salary.com.
- 10th percentile – 79020 p.a
- 25th percentile – 87467 p.a
- 50th percentile – 96746 p.a
- 75th percentile – 107240 p.a
- 90th percentile – 116794 p.a
According to ZipRecruiter, the national average Nursing Directors Salary is $88078 per annum in 2022.
Further Ziprecruiter Salary data reveals the following:
- 25th percentile – $72500 p.a
- 50th percentile – $88078 p.a
- 75th percentile – $100500 p.a
According to Indeed.com, Directors of Nursing services earn an average annual salary of $91645 per annum.
Here is the Director of Nursing Salary breakdown;
- $91645 per year
- $6489 per month
- $1677 per week
- $405 per day
- $39.27 per hour
According to Payscale.com, the average salary for a Director of Nursing is $93620 per year.
Here is how the salary breakdown looks.
- 10th percentile – $69000 per year
- 50th percentile – $94000 per year
- 90th percentile – $136000 per year
The average DON Salary is $100969 per year according to Comparably.com.
Check out Comparably’s Nursing Director Salary breakdown.
- 10th percentile – $19458 p.a
- 50th percentile – $93642 p.a
- 90th percentile – $517354 p.a
According to Glassdoor, the average national Director of Nursing Salary is $91412 per annum.
The average base pay is $92452 with an additional bonus payment of $19080 per year.
Continue reading to learn how much a Nursing Director can make in different states.
Average Director of Nursing Salary in Different States
The Director of Nursing job attracts different salaries in various states depending on the state’s labor regulations, cost of living, and the health facility’s budget.
Here is a comprehensive overview of the DON Salary in different states.
Here is a comprehensive look at California Nursing Directors’ Average Salaries.
Nursing Directors in California earn an average salary of $174888 according to Salary.com.
Check out the DON Salary breakdown.
- 10th percentile – $133085 p.a
- 25th percentile – $153007 p.a
- 50th percentile – $174888 p.a
- 75th percentile – $201575 p.a
- 90th percentile – $225872 p.a
Let’s analyze the average DON Salary in a Nursing home in California.
According to Payscale.com, a Nursing home Nursing Director in California earns an average salary of $129581 per annum.
Check out the Nursing Home Nurse Director`s Salary breakdown.
- 10th percentile – $95425 p.a
- 25th percentile – $111702 p.a
- 50th percentile – $129581 p.a
- 75th percentile – $146735 p.a
- 90th percentile – $162352 p.a
According to indeed.com, Directors of Nursing receive an annual base salary of $99161 and additional overtime pay of $10766.
Further data reveals that Nursing Directors with over ten years of experience earn $109466 per annum.
The highest paying cities for Nursing Directors in California include;
- San Francisco – $111713 p.a
- Oakland – $103448 p.a
- Los Angeles – $100505 p.a
- Walnut Creek – $100013 p.a
According to Salaryexpert.com, Directors of Nursing in California earn an average annual salary of $153472.
An entry-level DON earns an average of $106168, while an experienced Nursing Director with over eight years of experience earns an average of 191103 per annum.
Here is a look at the average Nursing Director’s Salary in Massachusetts.
According to Indeed.com, Nursing Directors earn an average annual base pay of $98333 and $10766 overtime pay.
Further data reveals that a Nursing Director with over ten years of experience earns $108552 per annum.
Some of the best-paying cities for Nursing Directors in Massachusetts include;
- Framingham – $95785 p.a
- Westborough – $91674 p.a
- Worcester – $91611 p.a
- Oak Bluffs – $91268 p.a
According to Salary.com, Directors of Nursing earn an average salary of $170347 per year.
Here is the DON Salary breakdown.
- 10th percentile – 129630 p.a
- 25th percentile – 149034 p.a
- 50th percentile – 170347 p.a
- 75th percentile – 196341 p.a
- 90th percentile – 220008 p.a
According to Ziprecruiter, DONs earn an average salary of $94358 per year.
Here is a closer look at the salary ranges of Nursing Directors.
- 25th percentile -$70622 p.a
- 50th percentile – $101781 p.a
- 75th percentile – $131465 p.a
- 90th percentile – $162974 p.a
Check out the Assistant Director of Nursing (ADON) Salary statistics in Massachusetts according to Ziprecruiter.
- Average salary – $80027 p.a
- 25th percentile – $70622 p.a
- 50th percentile – $84575 p.a
- 75th percentile – $94524 p.a
- 90th percentile – $109735 p.a
New York is among the highest-paying states for Nursing Directors due to the high demand for Nursing Management Professionals.
Here is a look at the expected annual salaries for Nursing Directors in New York.
According to Salary.com, as of April 2022, Nursing Directors in New York earn an average annual salary of $167999.
Here is the complete breakdown of Nursing Directors’ Salaries in New York.
- 10th percentile – $127843 p.a
- 25th percentile – $146980 p.a
- 50th percentile – $167999 p.a
- 75th percentile – $193634 p.a
- 90th percentile – $216974 p.a
The average base salary for a Nursing Director is $106174 with $10766 overtime pay per year.
Nursing Directors with more than 10 years of experience earn $117208 per year.
The highest-paying cities for Directors of Nursing include the following:
- New York – $106174 p.a
- White plains – $99344 p.a
- Brooklyn – $95495 p.a
- Albany – $94265 p.a
According to the Economic Research Institute, Nursing Directors in New York earn an average of $155105 per year ($75/hour).
New York DONs also receive an average annual salary bonus amounting to $10004.
According to Salaryexpert.com, a Nursing Director in New York earns an average base salary of $155105 and a $10004 bonus.
Further information reveals that an entry-level Nursing Director earns $107298 while a senior-level DON earns $193136 per annum.
Here is what you should expect to earn as a DON in Texas.
According to Salary.com, Directors of Nursing in Texas earn an annual average salary of $153746.
Here is the salary breakdown for Texas DONs.
- 10th percentile – $116997 p.a
- 25th percentile – $134510 p.a
- 50th percentile – $153746 p.a
- 75th percentile – $177207 p.a
- 90th percentile – $198567 p.a
A Nursing Director in Texas earns an average salary of $91523 per year in Texas according to Indeed.com.
Further information reveals that experienced Nursing Directors with over ten years of experience earn at least $101034 per annum.
The highest-paying cities in Texas according to Indeed.com include the following:
- Dallas – $95441 p.a
- Austin – $94701 p.a
- Houston – $93599 p.a
- Fort Worth – $90186 p.a
The average annual Director of Nursing Salary in Texas is $75988 according to Ziprecruiter.
Here is a snapshot of the different DON salary ranges in Texas.
- 25th percentile – $64238 p.a
- 50th percentile – $75988 p.a
- 75th percentile – $89047 p.a
- 90th percentile – $104553 p.a
Highest Paying Cities for Nursing Directors
On average Nursing Directors earn higher salaries in cities as compared to rural areas.
The differences in DON Salaries between cities are due to differences in cost of living, healthcare facility budgets, and patient population.
Let’s analyze the cities that provide Nursing Directors with the highest salary packages.
These are the highest paying states for Nursing Directors according to Indeed.com.
- Washington DC – $105993 p.a
- Chicago, IL – $99318 p.a
- Denver, CO – $97352 p.a
- Atlanta, GA – $96274 p.a
- Dallas, TX – $95441 p.a
- Houston, TX – $93599 p.a
- Columbus, OH – $91588 p.a
- Miami, FL – $90816 p.a
- Cincinnati, OH – $90767 p.a
Here are the highest-paying cities for Directors of Nursing according to Ziprecruiter.
- San Mateo, CA – $106986 p.a
- Berkeley, CA – $103244 p.a
- Daly City, CA – $102956 p.a
- Richmond, CA – $100496 p.a
- Irvine, CA – $99885 p.a
- Odessa, TX – $98328 p.a
- Stamford. CT – $97857 p.a
- Bellevue, WA – $97580 p.a
- Orange, CA – $97580 p.a
- San Francisco – $97390 p.a
Director of Nursing Salary by Experience Level
Experience is a critical factor that affects the earning potential of Healthcare Providers, especially Nursing Administrators.
Let’s review the average DON Salary by experience level.
Here are the average annual Nursing Director Salaries based on their years of experience according to Payscale.com.
- Entry-Level (less than one year) – $83291 p.a
- Early Career (between one to four years) – $87603 p.a
- Mid Career (between five to nine years) – $91110 p.a
- Experienced Level (between ten to nineteen years) – $98507 p.a
- Late-Career Level (twenty plus years) – $99476 p.a
National Compensation Survey
Here is how years of experience affect the average Director of Nursing Salary according to the National Compensation Survey.
- Entry-Level (less than one year) – $54614 p.a
- Early Career (one to four years) – $68729 p.a
- Mid-Career (five to nine years) – $88139 p.a
- Experienced (ten to nineteen years) -$111673 p.a
- Late Career (20+ years) – $156438 p.a
Director of Nursing Salary by Healthcare Facility
Here is a look at the average Director of Nursing Salaries in different healthcare settings.
Wellness Center Nursing Director’s Salary
Nursing Directors in wellness centers typically earn higher salaries than most Nursing professionals.
Check out the average annual salary estimates for wellness center DONs.
- Salary.com – $103601 p.a
- Glassdoor.com – $63661 p.a
- Ziprecruiter – $53253 p.a
Nursing Home Nursing Director Salary
A Nursing Director in a long-term care facility earns an above-average annual salary.
Check out the average annual salary for long-term Care Nursing Directors.
- Salary.com – $116008 p.a
- Payscale.com – $85662 p.a
- Comparably.com – $78898 p.a
- Indeed.com – $64997 p.a
- Glassdoor.com – $112078 p.a
Hospital Nursing Director’s Salary
Most Directors of Nursing work in a hospital setting where their services are most needed.
Here are the Average Salary estimates for DONs working in hospitals.
- Salary.com – $156569 p.a
- Ziprecruiter -$94315 p.a
- Payscale.com – $93620 p.a
- Comparably.com – $107500 p.a
Nursing Director Salary by Job Title
Nursing Directors go by different names depending on the healthcare organization’s size and structure.
Here are the average DON Salaries by job title.
Director of Nursing Services (DNS)
On average, a DNS will earn the following salaries.
- Glassdoor.com – $102.353 p.a
- Zippia.com – $88677 p.a
- Salary.com – $156600 p.a
Assistant Director of Nursing (ADON)
Larger healthcare settings often have an ADON who helps coordinate and manage Nursing services.
On average ADONs receive the following salaries.
- Salary.com – $150933 p.a
- Glassdoor.com – $80511 p.a
- Ziprecruiter – $76614 p.a
- Payscale.com – $74042 p.a
- Salaryexpert.com – $149048 p.a
Director of Clinical Services
Here are the national salary estimates for Directors of Clinical Services in the US.
- Comparably.com – $123740 p.a
- Glassdoor.com – $90076 p.a
- Payscale.com – $91049 p.a
- Ziprecruiter.com – $96200 p.a
- Indeed.com – $90239 p.a
- Salary.com – $87760 p.a
- Zippia.com – $92783 p.a
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Wellness Directors grouped under Health Educators earn a median salary of $64930 in 2022.
Other Salary estimates for Wellness Directors are as follows.
- Glassdoor.com – $63661 p.a
- Salary.com – $100710 p.a
- Payscale.com – $61096 p.a
What Factors Affect the Director of Nursing’s Salary
Not all Nursing Directors earn the same salaries, which is due to a variety of reasons.
Let’s explore the top factors that affect the average DON Salary.
1. Education Levels
Your level of education will significantly affect your earning potential as a Director of Nursing.
A Ph.D. DON will in most instances earn much higher salaries compared to a DON with a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree.
The specialized training that higher academic certifications offer compared to a Bachelor’s degree makes you more valuable.
2. Years of Experience
Nursing Directors with more practical, hands-on experience often earn higher salaries than those with little or no experience.
DONs with more experience often make better decisions and can handle the pressure of running a Nursing department.
Location directly affects the cost of living, which affects the average Director of Nursing Salary.
On average, Nursing Directors in urban areas (cities and towns) will generally earn higher salaries than those working in more rural areas.
The difference in salaries is largely due to the cost of living, with city dwellers spending more on daily living than those living in less urban areas.
4. Type of Healthcare Facility
Every healthcare facility is unique, serving different clients, running on different budgets, and having different patient flows.
The type of healthcare facility directly affects the salary of a Nursing Director.
Larger healthcare facilities with bigger budgets and higher Nursing staff tend to pay Nursing Directors more than smaller healthcare facilities.
5. Skill Levels
If you possess the hard and soft skills needed to excel in Healthcare Administration, you will probably earn higher salaries than your peers.
Typical DON skills include effective communication, critical thinking, problem-solving, and technical Nursing competence.
6. Nursing Designation
You can be a Director of Nursing with an LPN, RN, or NP designation, but the average salaries will differ depending on the Nursing Designation.
The higher the Nursing Designation, the higher the Director of Nursing’s Salary.
For instance, an LPN Director of Nursing’s Salary is significantly lower than an RN DON’s Salary.
How Does the Nursing Director’s Salary Compare with Other Professions?
The Nursing Director’s Salary fares quite well compared to other Nursing Professions.
Check out this salary comparison table.
Licensed Practical Nurse
Tips to Increase the Director of Nursing Salary
Here are a few tips to help you increase your DON Salary.
Upgrade your Education
The Director of Nursing Career values education and one way of increasing your salary is to grow your education.
Consider enrolling in a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or Doctoral Program to boost your earning power.
Earn DON Certification
Several DON certifications exist and though not compulsory, earning them improves your professional value.
Consider sitting for different Director of Nursing Certification exams.
Increase Your Experience
Hands-on experience is vital in the Nursing Director Profession.
Consider growing your personal experience by taking on different Nursing Management jobs over time.
All of this will help grow your professional portfolio with relevant professional experience.
Enroll in Management Training
Management Training will help you be a better Nursing Director and command much higher salaries.
Nursing Directors are highly skilled Nursing Professionals who earn quite good salaries depending on different factors.
If you’re thinking of joining the Nursing Director Career path, knowing the expected salaries, factors affecting your earning potential, and growing your salary is vital.
After reading this comprehensive piece, we hope that all your Director of Nursing Salary queries has been answered.
If not, please continue reading to answers to our readers’ Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How much does an Assistant Director of Nursing make?
Here are the average Assistant Director of Nursing Salary estimates according to different data sources.
– Salary.com – $150933 per year
– Glassdoor.com – $80511 per year
– Payscale.com – $74042 per year
– Talent.com – $79971 per year
– Salaryexplorer.com – $139000 per year
– Zippia.com – $83559 per year
How much does a Nursing Home Director make?
A Nursing Home Nursing Director varies depending on the state, years of experience, education levels, and healthcare organization budgets. These are the average annual salaries for Nursing Home Directors of Nursing.
– Salary.com – $75871 p.a
– Payscale.com – $77473 p.a
– Comparably.com – $78898 p.a
What is a Director of Nursing’s salary?
According to different data sources these are;
– Ziprecruiter – $93007 per year
– Salary.com – $156569 per year
– Indeed.com – $91759 per year
– Glassdoor – $91412 per year
– Payscale.com – $93620 per year
– Comparably.com – $93642 per year
– Noodle.com – $109801 per year
What does a Nursing Director do?
– Managing the daily activities of the Nursing staff
– Preparing and implementing Nursing policies
– Developing and managing the Nursing department’s budgets
– Maintaining high-quality Patient Care
– Resolving patient complaints
– Ensure that Nursing staff adhere to regulatory requirements
– Satisfy state and federal public health requirements
How do you become a Nursing Director?
– Enroll in an accredited Nursing Program (BSN, ADN)
– Sit the NCLEX RN exam and earn the RN Designation
– Gain relevant clinical experience or enroll in a Master’s Degree Program
– Earn DON Certification
– Gain further experience
– Enroll for a DNP (optional)
Is it worth being a Director of Nursing?
Here are a few reasons why the Nursing Director Career path is worth your time.
– Higher salaries
– Greater autonomy
– High levels of job satisfaction
– Great networking opportunities
– Chance to grow your professional career
– Opportunity to effect positive change in Nursing Policies
What is the highest paid Nurse Practitioner (NP)
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the highest-paid NP is the Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA), who earns $202470 per year.
– Neonatal NP – $125000
– Cardiac NP – $114000
– Orthopedic NP – $113000
– Oncology NP – $113000
– Clinical Nurse Specialist – $108000
How can a Nurse make six figures?
A Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or Registered Nurse (RN) can make six figures in the following ways.
– Becoming a Nursing Specialist
– Joining Nursing Administration
– Working full time
– Working in a high-paying state
– Add Nursing Certification
– Working overtime
– Start a Nursing Side Hustle