Results of the 2020 NAPCP Salary Survey Help End-Users Negotiate Salary and Promotions While Assisting Organizations in Determining Compensation, Staffing Requirements

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The NAPCP 2020 Salary Survey is the seventh edition of this survey conducted by the NAPCP since 2001, and offers insights and information regarding the salary and staffing arrangements for Commercial Card programs in the U.S. and Canada.

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When compared to salaries reported in the 2016 Salary Survey report, Program Managers have made gains on average of 9 percent, while the average salaries of Program Administrators has remained steady.

The results of the NAPCP 2020 Salary Survey are presented to the industry in a report detailing compensation information specific to managing a Commercial Card program. Across the industry, it is clear that the single key to garnering and maximizing the organizational benefits of card programs is the caliber of the individuals managing these programs. The benefit of the data and findings in the report are significant to three important groups in the industry: Organizations/employers, end-user employees, and providers. The report delivers:

  • Guidelines for FTE norms and competitive compensation, and insights into factors contributing to best-in-class programs
  • Factors contributing to high earnings and bonuses
  • Context to help providers raise clients to higher levels of success, who in turn maximize programs with product enhancements

A global professional association advancing Commercial Card and Payments practices worldwide since 1999, the NAPCP has conducted the Salary Survey approximately every three years since 2001.

The 2020 results report examines:

  • Salary based on role, experience, education, gender and card type
  • Prevalence and allocation of bonuses
  • Resource commitment such as average FTEs
  • Cost of audit practices
  • Departments where programs reside
  • Sector-specific norms
  • Challenges to managing cards


Average Industry Salaries
Salary increases with the level of responsibility within the organization:

  • Program Administrator: $59,253
  • Program Manager: $81,055
  • Managerial Oversight: $90,341

“When compared to salaries reported in the 2016 Salary Survey report, Program Managers have made gains on average of 9 percent, while the average salaries of Program Administrators has remained steady,” said Terri Brustad, CPCP, Manager of Content Services. “In addition, the 2020 results report some narrowing of the gender wage gap within the industry, from males earning on average 30 percent higher than their female counterparts in 2016, to 12 percent higher on average in 2020. However, there remains room for improvement.”

Salaries By Sector
Professionals working in corporations, on average, tend to have the highest salaries across all three job roles. Average corporate sector salaries are:

  • Program Administrators: $62,429
  • Program Managers: $86,630
  • Managerial Oversight: $94,762

Educational institutions, government and not-for-profit organizations report lower average salaries.

Salary and Card Type
Results of the survey demonstrate that as more professionals in the industry have the opportunity to manage multiple programs types, salaries increase. Expanding the management role to Travel Card as well as P-Card, results in a 13 to 15 percent increase in salary.

Benefits of the Certified Purchasing Card Professional (CPCP) Credential
In 2020, survey results show that the CPCP credential is associated with a 15 percent higher average salary, compared to 9 percent higher in 2016.

Biggest Challenges
The results report includes six pages of quotes from practitioners, signaling opportunities for organizations to make gains in several key program areas. The top three biggest challenges in card program management are:

  • Ensuring policy compliance
  • Lack of adequate staffing
  • Garnering support of top management

Further Information About the Survey and Methodology
The survey was conducted in January and February of 2020 by the NAPCP, with 311 responses from Commercial Card professionals in private and public sectors in the U.S. and Canada. The NAPCP’s salary survey report includes 43 pages of content and 30 graphs/charts. RPMG Research Corporation performed the analysis in the report, lending an analytical perspective gained from 25 years of in-depth study of the industry.

The Executive Summary is complimentary to all NAPCP members and complimentary subscribers. The full survey results report may be purchased in the NAPCP store. An interactive, live webinar will be held on September 8, 2020.

About the NAPCP
Founded in 1999, the NAPCP is a membership-based professional association committed to advancing Commercial Card and Payment professionals and industry practices worldwide. Serving a community of almost 20,000, the NAPCP is a respected voice in the industry and an impartial resource for members at all experience levels in the public and private sectors. The NAPCP provides unmatched opportunities for continuing education and peer networking through its conferences, Regional Forums, webinars, website, virtual demonstrations, newsletters and regular communication. The association sponsors research and publishes timely and relevant white papers, survey results and other documents. The NAPCP also offers a Certified Purchasing Card Professional (CPCP) credential.

About RPMG Research Corporation
RPMG Research Corporation specializes in market research that provides insight into the understanding of evolving procurement practices, in particular as they relate to and are supported by bank commercial card technology. Since inception in 2000, RPMG projects include numerous major market studies in the use and acceptance of bank purchasing cards, corporate travel cards, and virtual cards (or electronic accounts payable) primarily in North America. A key objective of the benchmark survey series is to provide card issuers and card-using organizations with information that will help maximize the value of using or accepting Commercial Cards.

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