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The job market is largely an extrovert’s world. Not only does the interview process favor those with more outgoing personalities, but most jobs involve some to a lot of interpersonal communication. That’s especially true for high-paying jobs—doctors, business officers, lawyers, and other well-to-do professionals frequently deal with external customers, colleagues, or both.

But that doesn’t mean introverts are doomed to choose between forced socialization or a life of dead-end careers.

If you have more energy when you’re alone and prefer to work with, ahem, minimal human distractions, you’re in luck. There are plenty of high-paying jobs for introverts. So by developing the right skills and obtaining the proper credentials, you can earn a lucrative job that you can do largely independently.

Today, I’m going to go over some of the highest-paying jobs that introverts enjoy, what those careers entail, and how to enter each field.

 

High-Pay, Low-Contact Jobs


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OK. Let’s get real for a second. It’s extremely unlikely you’ll ever find a job where you’ll work 100% alone all of the time.

That said, there are many roles that require far fewer face-to-face interactions than your average position. And those are the jobs that we’ll home in on today.

Every one of these jobs pays a mean annual wage of $100,000 annually, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook. These jobs are listed in reverse order of mean annual wage (from lowest to highest).

10. Software Quality Assurance Analysts and Testers


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $108,460
  • 2023 employment: 203,040

Software quality assurance analysts and testers check out software before it reaches consumers in an effort to find any defects and their causes. These workers document any issues they discover and report them to software or web developers. Sometimes, they also participate in software design reviews.

Much of software quality assurance analysts’ and testers’ work is done independently. They do have interactions with developers, programmers, and possibly customers, but this is often through written reports.

Usually, to get one of these positions, you need a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, computer programming, or a related field. However, some people instead qualify through boot camps or online courses. To gain relevant experience, some first work in IT positions or as programmers.

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9. Statisticians


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $109,190
  • 2023 employment: 29,950

Statisticians collect, analyze, interpret, and summarize numerical data to solve problems. Some specialize in fields such as biostatistics, business statistics, or economic statistics. This employment category includes mathematical and survey statisticians, but excludes survey researchers.

Typically, this job is done in offices, and the majority of this work is done solitarily. (Though if you’re a bit more extroverted, you might occasionally attend conferences and seminars.)

People interested in a career as a statistician start by earning a bachelor’s degree in statistics. Those interested in a specialization might also want to take courses related to that field (e.g., someone interested in biostatistics might want to take biology courses). Within the private industry, some employers prefer candidates to have a master’s degree. 

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8. Special Effects Artists and Animators


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $109,630
  • 2023 employment: 29,940

Special effects artists and animators make special effects or animations for media such as movies, commercials, and computer games. Says the BLS: “Special effects artists and animators often work in a specific medium. Some focus on creating animated movies or video games. Others create visual effects for movies and television shows.” Some of these workers mainly use computer software, while others prefer to draw or paint by hand before translating their work into computer programs, and still others work in physical mediums where their work is never digitized.

Many people in this line of work do so in offices or from home, usually on a computer or at a drawing table. Usually, there is a regular schedule, but nights or weekends may need to be worked if deadlines are quickly approaching. And this work can be largely independent, though every job is different—some positions require a high level of collaboration, others don’t.

These creatives usually need a bachelor’s degree in animation, computer graphics, fine arts, or a related field. Some schools offer specialized degrees in topics such as game design or interactive media. Additionally, candidates should have a strong portfolio, which can be developed while earning a degree.

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7. Mathematicians


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $119,770
  • 2023 employment: 2,220

Mathematicians research mathematics and use mathematical techniques to solve problems in business, the sciences, engineering, and other fields. They may create surveys or experiments, develop mathematical models to analyze data, and communicate their analyses to others.

It’s standard for mathematicians to work in offices and use computers frequently. The majority of work is done alone, which allows for deep focus.

Anyone interested in a career as a mathematician will need to take a lot of math classes. Federal government jobs usually ask for a bachelor’s degree in math or at least a substantial amount of math coursework. Private industry mathematicians typically need a master’s or doctoral degree.

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6. Economists


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $132,650
  • 2023 employment: 16,420

The government, consulting firms, and other organizations hire economists to research a variety of economic issues, often related to the labor force, education, or international trade. These professionals collect and analyze data, interpret forecast trends, present research, and advise their employers on issues related to fiscal policy or other economic topics.

Economists typically work under the glow of office fluorescents. However, depending on the position, some may be asked to attend conferences or travel for other reasons. And while most work is performed independently, occasionally, these economists might need to collaborate with statisticians, data scientists, or other specialists.

Higher education is necessary for anyone who wants to be an economist. At minimum, you need a bachelor’s degree. Research, business, or international organizations often require a master’s degree or Ph.D. and relevant work experience.

 

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5. Computer Network Architects


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $133,930
  • 2023 employment: 174,100

Computer network architects, also referred to as network engineers, design and implement an organization’s data communication networks. Some of the common duties include deploying planned networks, documenting processes, upgrading hardware, and researching new technologies.

This job is typically done in an office setting, though computer network architects sometimes work in server rooms so they can access the hardware. And while this role occasionally requires a little teamwork, much of these professionals’ work can be done solo.

Often, employers want a computer network architect to have a bachelor’s degree in computer and information technology, engineering, or a similar field. However, this isn’t a requirement for every company. Regardless of formal education, several years of working with information technology systems is expected. Some people start their careers as network and computer system administrators or in a related role.

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4. Database Architects


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $137,030
  • 2023 employment: 59,920

Database architects develop and build databases for systems and applications. To do this, they need to know an organization’s technical requirements, create models, and code new data architecture that integrates with existing infrastructure. Some of their tasks overlap with those of database administrators.

These workers frequently work independently, though some companies might have them collaborate with technicians, hardware engineers, and others. Database architects often work in offices, though some are able to work remotely

The path to becoming a database administrator usually starts with a bachelor’s degree in computer and information technology or a related field. Some companies prefer applicants who have a master’s degree. 

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3. Software Developers


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $138,110
  • 2023 employment: 1,656,880

As you could likely guess, software developers develop computer and network software. But that isn’t all they do. They also analyze user needs, update software, and enhance current software capabilities. Some developers maintain databases within an application area.

Depending on the organization, software developers either work alone or in very small groups. For smaller companies, independent work is more common, whereas larger businesses tend to have teams tackling complex tasks.

Typically, software developers have a bachelor’s degree in computer and information technology or a related field, but some employers prioritize hiring people with a master’s degree. It’s an advantage to complete a software development internship. 

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2. Physicists


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $158,270
  • 2023 employment: 18,350

Physicists research the fundamental properties that govern time, space, energy, and matter. Some conduct experiments and study theory to increase the world’s knowledge about physics. Others use what they know about the topic to develop new technologies or solve problems.

It’s very common for physicists to work at universities. Those that do typically split up their time between teaching, researching, and writing scientific articles. Some physicists work as part of a team in laboratories. Others work independently solving problems, which is the best fit for introverts.

Physicists start by earning a bachelor’s degree in physics. Some choose to also get a master’s degree in the subject. Those who want to be a professor or work in the most prestigious research positions obtain a Ph.D. As a general rule, the more research a person has conducted, the better.

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1. Computer and Information Systems Managers


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  • 2023 mean annual wage: $180,720
  • 2023 employment: 592,600

Technologically savvy computer and information systems managers, aka information technology (IT) managers, plan and coordinate a company’s computer-related activities. A few of their duties often include directing the installation of computer software and hardware, staying up to date on new technology, managing the work of other IT professionals, and negotiating with vendors.

Usually, these employees work in offices near computer rooms. A lot of their work is done independently, making this a good role for introverts. 

These are most commonly full-time positions that have an expectation to work additional hours if an issue arises or an important deadline is quickly approaching.

To become a computer and information systems manager, you typically need a bachelor’s degree in computer and information technology or a similar field. Some organizations also require a graduate degree. Additionally, most jobs ask for several years of relevant experience. It’s common to begin as a lower-level manager before advancing to a more advanced position.

 

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Hannah Kowalczyk-Harper has been a professional writer since 2016 and has worked with WealthUp (formerly Young & the Invested) since 2019.

Prior to becoming a full-time writer, she was still immersed in words through previous roles as a library specialist and teacher. Her background in education helps her take complex topics and turn them into easy-to-understand text.

Hannah holds a degree in Elementary Education from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. When she isn’t writing, Hannah is usually found playing with her niece and nephew, traveling, or brewing more coffee.