Vice presidents are part of the chief executive staff of a company. They help oversee the direction of a company -- or at least the direction of a department within a company. Companies typically seek candidates with a bachelor's or master's degree in business administration or field related to a specific industry, such as marketing, public relations or computer science. However, candidates promoted from within may be able to substitute experience for a degree, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Salaries vary by industry.
A survey by Robert Half Finance & Accounting, a recruiting company for financial professionals, notes that salaries vary by the size of the company. VPs of finance for companies with sales under $50 million earned an annual salary between $89,250 to $125,500 in 2013. VPs at companies with sales of $50 million to $100 million earned $112,000 to $155,250 a year. VPs at companies with sales of $100 million to $250 million made $137,000 to $192,250 a year. VPs at companies with sales topping $500 million earned the most, averaging $219,000 to $352,250 a year.
In the banking and financial markets industry, vice presidents earned anywhere from $126,750 to $188,500 a year in 2013 on the "sell" side, which basically means the selling of investments to asset management firms. Those on the "buy" side -- advising clients on investments -- earned $124,000 to $181,000 on average, according to the Robert Half Finance & Accounting survey.
A 2013 survey by The Creative Group, another national recruiter, found corporate VPs of marketing earn $112,000 to $200,000 a year and marketing VPs at advertising or marketing agencies earn $117,000 to $176,000 a year. In the public-relations field, VPs at of PR at an agency earn $114,000 to $194,500 a year, while those at the corporate level earn $115,750 to $190,500 a year.
Besides finance, marketing and public relations, many large companies hire VPs of information technology to oversee the IT department. As of 2013, VPs of IT earn $127,750 to $186,500 a year, according to a survey by Robert Half Technology, a specialized recruiter for IT professionals.
2016 Salary Information for Top Executives
Top executives earned a median annual salary of $109,140 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, top executives earned a 25th percentile salary of $70,800, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $165,620, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 2,572,000 people were employed in the U.S. as top executives.