OSCP Certification Salary Guide: How Much Can You Make?

OSCP Certification Salary Guide How to Boost Your Earnings

Are you wondering what salary you can expect to earn with the OSCP certification? Eager to know if the OSCP will lead to a high-paying cyber security career? Well, you’ve come to the right place.

We understand you want to learn how the OSCP certification translates to earning potential to make a smart career investment. You want to see real-world OSCP salary data.

This article will show you the many coveted jobs the OSCP can help you secure across cyber security. We’ll outline the abundant opportunities that await OSCP-certified professionals.

And, of course, we’ll share the salary ranges you can expect to earn in different OSCP job roles, from entry to executive level. 

Let’s dive into the OSCP certification salary expectations and career outlook you seek.

Overview of the OffSec Certified Professional

The OSCP, or the Offsec Certified Professional, is a certification you achieve after completing the 24-hour hands-on exam, which requires finding vulnerabilities in a virtual network environment and gaining access to various systems. 

The exam’s main focus is on its hands-on aspect as opposed to other certifications, which may require you to answer multiple-choice questions. 

What Does OSCP Prepare You For?

The OSCP serves as a valuable gateway to a diverse range of careers in cyber security. We're here to introduce you to six job roles available upon obtaining the OSCP certification.

These career avenues include roles in offensive security, analytical positions, and engineering capacities.

Penetration Tester

Penetration testers are primarily tasked with assessing an organization's security by identifying vulnerabilities within its systems and networks. They employ a variety of tools and methods in their efforts to breach the network. Beyond the technical aspects, a key component of this role is the capability to produce comprehensive reports detailing their findings.

Red Team Operator

Red team operators share similarities with a penetration tester. However, they distinguish themselves by conducting simulated attacks, typically with a specific objective. These operators emulate the TTPs (Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures) characteristic of actual threat actors.

Cyber Security Analyst

Cyber security analysts serve as the initial safeguard for an organization. They monitor, detect, investigate, and address potential threats. Additionally, they collaborate with other IT professionals to reinforce security measures, provide insights based on their analysis, and ensure the organization's digital assets remain uncompromised.

SOC Analyst

Unlike general security analysts, SOC (Security Operations Center) analysts have a specific role centered within the SOC environment. Their primary duty is to offer frontline detection and raise alerts regarding potential security incidents. To aid in this process, they commonly utilize tools like SIEM (security information and event management), firewalls, and IDS/IPS (intrusion detection systems/intrusion prevention systems) to collect system data and event logs.

DevSecOps Engineer

DevSecOps engineers embed security practices directly into the software development lifecycle. They automate security processes and enable developers to build secure code. The role bridges development, operations, and security - combining automation, monitoring, and security expertise to make security intrinsic to the DevOps workflow.

Cyber Security Engineer

Cyber security engineers are responsible for designing, building, and implementing an organization's information security systems and controls. The role blends knowledge of cyber security, networking, systems, and software development to protect infrastructure, data, and applications from modern threats and risks.

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OSCP Job Opportunities and Salary

Once you’ve obtained the OSCP certification, you’ll have not only gained skills in hacking and exploitation but also universal skills, such as problem-solving, analytical thinking, persistence, time management, and adaptability, that can be used in various security jobs. These transferable skills are directly applicable to the job positions mentioned.

OSCP Job Opportunities and Salary

New OSCP holders typically fall into stage four of the cyber security roadmap, which is cyber security specialisation. Depending on the company, this can be viewed as anywhere from entry-level to intermediate roles.

Penetration Tester

Most penetration tester positions are full-time and can be based either on-site or remotely. Most job listings we researched specifically mention the OSCP or include it alongside other penetration testing certifications, such as the CEH or CompTIA PenTest+.

Penetration testers' salary typically ranges from $75K to $134K USD. However, it's important to note that these figures can vary based on location, educational background, and any specializations, such as being a web app pentester or a cloud pentester.

Similar job titles include: 

Glassdoor
Glassdoor

Red Team Operator

Red team operator positions are typically classified as advanced roles and are generally full-time remote or onsite. These roles usually require OSCP and other certifications such as GPEN, CRTO, and Security+.

Regarding salary, entry-level positions start at $95K per year. Meanwhile, the most experienced operators can earn $158K or higher annually. Experience and education can play a large role in the salary provided. 

Other notable names related to this role include:

  • Red Team Analyst
  • Red Team Expert
  • Red Team Consultant
Red Team Operator

Cyber Security Analyst

Cyber Security Analyst positions, which can be entry-level to advanced, are typically offered as full-time roles, though contract opportunities are also available. These roles can be either remote or onsite. While the OSCP certification is a common requirement, employers often value other notable certifications in addition, including Security+ and CySA+.

The salary for a Cyber Security Analyst generally falls between $66K and $110K, with variances coming from experience and educational background. Most positions prefer candidates with a Bachelor’s degree in a computer-related discipline.

Other job titles can include:

  • Information Security Analyst
  • Security Analyst
  • IT Security Analyst
Information Security Analyst II

SOC Analyst

SOC analyst roles primarily start at the entry level, known as level one. However, they can also progress to intermediate (level two) and advanced positions (level three). They are usually full-time, with many requiring on-site presence and on-call availability. The OSCP certification is a common prerequisite for these positions, often complemented by CEH, CySA+, and Security+ certifications.

Compensation for a SOC analyst typically ranges from $65K to $135K, with variations based on experience and educational background.

Other similar roles include:

  • MDR Analyst
  • Cyber Threat Analyst
MDR Analyst

DevSecOps Engineer

DevSecOps engineer roles are classified as intermediate to advanced, are mostly full-time, and favor remote work arrangements. The OSCP certification is frequently highlighted as desirable, and other certifications like Security+ and CISSP often complement it. 

Salaries for a DevSecOps engineer typically fall between $77K and $136K, with the final figure being influenced by factors such as experience, specialized skills, and educational credentials.

Other similar roles include: 

  • Cloud Security Engineer - DevSecOps
  • Infrastructure Security Engineer
Cloud Security Engineer - DevSecOps

Cyber Security Engineer

Cyber security engineer roles are advanced roles that predominantly offer full-time positions, combining remote and onsite work arrangements. OSCP stands out as one of the most coveted certifications sought for these roles. Other notable certifications like CISSP, Security+, CEH, and CySA+ frequently complement it. Companies often prioritize candidates who possess a combination of these credentials.

The salary for a cyber security engineer can vary widely. Entry-level positions might offer around $99K, while those with more expertise and seniority can expect upwards of $159K. The specific compensation often correlates with years of experience and educational qualifications.

Similar roles include:

  • Information Security Engineer
  • Systems and Security Engineer
Information Security Engineer

Career Progression

Once you have the OSCP certification and have started a career in one of the above roles, what are your options in terms of career progression?

Penetration Tester/Red Team Operator

If you are in an offensive role as a penetration tester or red team operator, the obvious option is to continue with the OffSec certification route, starting with OSEP and perhaps attempting to achieve the OSCE3 certification after passing three advanced penetration testing exams. This would enable you to transition into roles such as senior penetration tester or senior red team operator, as well as penetration tester team lead or red team lead with salaries north of $190K.

Soc Analyst

For a SOC analyst, you could work on moving into higher levels or even moving into specialized roles such as a threat hunter with an average salary of $139K, incident responder with an average salary of $124K, or even transition into red team or penetration testing positions. 

Additionally, with enough experience, you might consider roles like SOC manager or cyber security architect, where average salaries can reach around $153K. Pursuing additional certifications such as CISA or CISM, participating in threat intelligence communities, and continuous learning can further aid in these transitions, ensuring you remain at the forefront of cyber security trends and threats.

Cyber Security Analyst

For the cyber security analyst role, you could take on other advanced certifications such as CISSP, CISM, or CompTIA's CASP. As you deepen your expertise, you might consider transitioning into roles like security consultant with an average salary of $132K or chief information security officer with an average salary of $239K. Continuous networking, hands-on experience, and staying updated with the evolving threat landscape are key to navigating these advanced pathways.

DevSecOps Engineer

Regarding the DevSecOps engineer role, you might transition to roles like security solutions architect with an average salary of $153K. Advancing could involve pursuing specialized certifications such as OSCE3, Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS), and Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP). Leading key security initiatives within your organization can also be a significant career booster.

Cyber Security Engineer

As for the cyber security engineer position, which is an advanced role, you could move into roles such as cyber security principal architect with an average salary of $200K, where you design overarching security strategies for systems and focus on emerging threats and actor tactics. Or even the chief information security officer overseeing the entire security strategy of an organization.

To further bolster your expertise, consider working on advanced certifications such as CISSP, CISM, or OSCE3. These certifications can deepen your knowledge and open doors to even more specialized roles within the cyber security realm.

Conclusion

Whether you aspire to be a penetration tester, security analyst, red teamer, or other cyber security position, OSCP gives you practical skills and credentials to succeed. 

In addition to detailing the job opportunities for OSCP holders, we outlined realistic salary ranges you can expect for each role. You now understand the OSCP certification salary from typical entry-level incomes to senior-level earnings.

An OSCP on your resume signals to employers you can be trusted to hack systems, identify vulnerabilities, and strengthen defenses.

Whether you want to start your career or advance as an industry veteran, the OSCP certification will prove a wise investment in your future.

If you're interested in earning your OSCP certification or pursuing a career in cyber security, the StationX Accelerator Program has everything you need to succeed. We offer hands-on classes and labs, a personalized roadmap tailored to your goals, one-on-one career mentorship from industry experts, and more.

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  • Richard Dezso

    Richard is a cyber security enthusiast, eJPT, and ICCA who loves discovering new topics and never stops learning. In his home lab, he's always working on sharpening his offensive cyber security skills. He shares helpful advice through easy-to-understand blog posts that offer practical support for everyone. Additionally, Richard is dedicated to raising awareness for mental health. You can find Richard on LinkedIn, or to see his other projects, visit his Linktree.

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