Top 30 Highest – Paying Jobs Without A Degree In Richmond, Virginia
Top 30 Highest – Paying Jobs Without A Degree In Richmond, Virginia

Richmond is the capital city of the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. It is the center of the Richmond Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) and the Greater Richmond Region. Richmond was incorporated in 1742 and has been an independent city since 1871. As of the 2010 census, the city's population was 204,214; in 2020, the population had grown to 226,610, making Richmond the fourth-most populous city in Virginia. The Richmond Metropolitan Area has a population of 1,260,029, the third-most populous metro in the state.

From the moment they arrive on campus, today’s high school students are inundated with messages about the importance of receiving a college education. They hear it from their guidance counselors, teachers, parents, family members, neighbors, and coaches. While graduation from a four-year college can certainly work wonders for students’ future careers, it’s not necessary for all fields — something admissions officers and guidance counselors sometimes fail to mention.

Here are the highest paying jobs without a degree in Richmond, Virginia.

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Tips to Find Jobs in Richmond, VA

As the state capital of Virginia and a metropolitan hub, Richmond is home to a number of businesses of different sizes and industries. The finance, government, legal, manufacturing, technology, and healthcare industries are just some of the top employment opportunities available to candidates looking to find jobs in the growing market of Richmond, VA.

A few reasons for job seekers to explore opportunities in Richmond is that the unemployment rate is currently lower than the national average, at 3.1 percent, a good indicator for job stability. Richmond was also recently named number 15 of the top 25 metro areas with the fastest job growth, indicating a strong, growing local economy. This strong job market, combined with a high quality of life, have also contributed to Richmond regularly being named as one of the “best places to live” in the U.S.

1. Optimize Your Resume

Not only should your resume and cover letter reflect skills that make you an ideal candidate, it should also tell a career story. Give the recruiter a memorable idea of who you are beyond your accomplishments to leave a strong impact.

Consider the circumstances that led you from one position to the next, and what each step added to your journey as a candidate. This helps you to create a valuable story and prepares you for behavioral interviews.

Another tactic is to optimize your resume for Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). Applicant Tracking Systems are software applications that collect, sort, and rank job applications and resumes. Depending on the company, understanding how to write a resume for an Applicant Tracking System could be a valuable asset to finding a job in Richmond.

2. Network

One recent survey estimated that 85 percent of jobs are filled through networking. While networking is consistently listed as one of the top ways to find a job, networking today fortunately comes in many different forms.

Attend a job fair, join a professional networking association, or increase your activity on LinkedIn. Check out networking events in Richmond on to find one that appeals to your interests and works with your schedule. Invest time and effort, and let people know that you are interested in new job opportunities.

3. Social Media

73 percent of companies surveyed have successfully recruited a candidate through social media, so leveraging social media platforms to find opportunities and connect with employers is a worthy search method to utilize.

One of the most popular channels to find a job using social media is LinkedIn, which is built for users to display their professional information and related content. Recruiters commonly use this platform to discover and/or screen potential candidates, so creating a profile could be beneficial in a job search.

4. Richmond, VA Job Boards

Job boards have postings for all different industries, while others focus on specific industries. Professional organizations also maintain job boards; for example, the Society for HR Managers (SHRM) posts open positions for HR professionals at all levels, across a number of different industries.

5. Work With Staffing Agencies in Richmond, VA

There are many jobs, however, that never make it to a job board or get posted at all. In a tight job market, many employers choose to work with staffing agencies in Richmond, VA for their recruiting expertise and diverse, well-maintained talent pool. For job seekers, being a part of a staffing agency’s talent pool can help place them in new opportunities within a network of highly sought out companies.

Moreover, a staffing agency allows a candidate a number of different options in types of employment: temporary, direct hire, or contract to hire just to name a few. This gives candidates the opportunity to test out a new employer to make sure that the job is a good fit or to take a short-term position to maintain an income while continuing a job search.

What are the highest paying jobs without a degree in Richmond, Virginia?

1. Commercial pilots

Photo: The Balance Careers
Photo: The Balance Careers

- Annual mean salary: $135,400

- Employment: 70

Commercial pilots can be cargo pilots, tour pilots, or backcountry pilots. They can be flight instructors, ferry pilots or glider tow pilots. A commercial pilot is simply one who is allowed by the FAA to charge money for services. To fly a regularly scheduled passenger service, or to fly for an airline, you'll also need to gain the additional requirements for those specific jobs. For instance, an airline pilot needs to have a commercial pilot certificate along with an Airline Transport Certificate (ATP) and must work for a regularly scheduled air carrier or some certificated operator to charge money.

2. Transportation, storage, and distribution managers

- Annual mean salary: $103,520

- Employment: 470

Plan, direct, or coordinate transportation, storage, or distribution activities in accordance with organizational policies and applicable government laws or regulations. Includes logistics managers.

On the job, you would:

  • Supervise the activities of workers engaged in receiving, storing, testing, and shipping products or materials.
  • Plan, develop, or implement warehouse safety and security programs and activities.
  • Inspect physical conditions of warehouses, vehicle fleets, or equipment and order testing, maintenance, repairs, or replacements.

3. First-line supervisors of non-retail sales workers

- Annual mean salary: $103,070

- Employment: 1,340’

Directly supervise and coordinate activities of sales workers other than retail sales workers. May perform duties such as budgeting, accounting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.

On the job, you would:

  • Monitor sales staff performance to ensure that goals are met.
  • Provide staff with assistance in performing difficult or complicated duties.
  • Direct and supervise employees engaged in sales, inventory-taking, reconciling cash receipts, or performing specific services.

4. First-line supervisors of firefighting and prevention workers

- Annual mean salary: $93,760

- Employment: 460

Directly supervise and coordinate activities of workers engaged in firefighting and fire prevention and control.

On the job, you would:

  • Assign firefighters to jobs at strategic locations to facilitate rescue of persons and maximize application of extinguishing agents.
  • Provide emergency medical services as required, and perform light to heavy rescue functions at emergencies.
  • Assess nature and extent of fire, condition of building, danger to adjacent buildings, and water supply status to determine crew or company requirements.

5. Electrical and electronics repairers, powerhouse, substation, and relay

- Annual mean salary: $91,970

- Employment: 170

Inspect, test, repair, or maintain electrical equipment in generating stations, substations, and in-service relays.

On the job, you would:

  • Inspect and test equipment and circuits to identify malfunctions or defects, using wiring diagrams and testing devices such as ohmmeters, voltmeters, or ammeters.
  • Prepare and maintain records detailing tests, repairs, and maintenance.
  • Consult manuals, schematics, wiring diagrams, and engineering personnel to troubleshoot and solve equipment problems and to determine optimum equipment functioning.

6. First-line supervisors of police and detectives

Photo: Getty Images
Photo: Getty Images

- Annual mean salary: $91,230

- Employment: 560

Supervise and coordinate the investigation of criminal cases, offering guidance and expertise to investigators, and ensuring that procedures are conducted in accordance with laws and regulations. Explain police operations to subordinates to assist them in performing their job duties.

7. Power distributors and dispatchers

- Annual mean salary: $88,450

- Employment: 90

Responsible for controlling the flow of electricity through a network of transmission lines from power plants to industrial plants and substations or residential users.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Control and monitor boilers, generators, and auxiliary equipment.
  • Distribute power among generators.
  • Monitor instruments.
  • Access power grid.
  • Control flow of electricity through transmission lines to industrial plants and substations that supply residential and commercial needs for electricity.
  • Monitor and operate current converters, voltage transformers, and circuit breakers.
  • Monitor other distribution equipment and record readings at a map board, or a diagram of the transmission grid system showing the status of transmission circuits and connections with substations and industrial plants.
  • Communicate with power plant operators, energy traders, and local utilities to route energy from generating stations to customers.
  • Anticipate changes in power needs caused by weather, such as increased demand for power on a hot day or outages during a thunderstorm.
  • React to changes in the structure of the grid due to transformer or transmission line failures and route current around affected areas.
  • Operate and monitor equipment that increases or decreases voltage.
  • Operate switchboard levers to control the flow of electricity in and out of the substations.

8. Property, real estate, and community association managers

- Annual mean salary: $85,450

- Employment: 480

Property, real estate, and community association managers take care of the many aspects of residential, commercial, or industrial properties. They make sure the property is well maintained, has a nice appearance, operates smoothly, and preserves its resale value.

9. Detectives and criminal investigators

Photo: The Balance Careers
Photo: The Balance Careers

- Annual mean salary: $84,220

- Employment: 440

Also known as detectives and private investigators, criminal Investigators work with law enforcement agencies, individuals, and businesses to investigate and solve crimes in an effort to secure a successful conviction.

Successful applicants should be hardworking, trustworthy, and dedicated to public service within our district. An associate's degree with a minimum of five years' experience as a law enforcement officer is desired.

10. Postmasters and mail superintendents

- Annual mean salary: $83,120

- Employment: 40

Organize and supervise activities, such as the processing of incoming and outgoing mail. Resolve customer complaints. Prepare employee work schedules. Direct and coordinate operational, management, and supportive services of one or a number of postal facilities.

11. Insurance sales agents

- Annual mean salary: $79,550

- Employment: 2,100

Insurance Agents are responsible for identifying sales opportunities for insurance plans and overseeing a portfolio of clients. Also known as Insurance Sales Agents, these professionals are responsible for identifying risk management strategies, handling policy renewals, and tracking claims.

Your work will include maintaining records, developing payment methods, and distributing policy proceeds. In addition to having excellent communication skills, our ideal candidate will also demonstrate outstanding interpersonal and negotiation skills.

12. Sales representatives of services, except advertising, insurance, financial services, and travel

- Annual mean salary: $73,990

- Employment: 4,650

Job Description: Sell services to individuals or businesses. May describe options or resolve client problems.

13. First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

- Annual mean salary: $72,280

- Employment: 2,060

First-Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers. Directly supervise and coordinate the activities of production and operating workers, such as inspectors, precision workers, machine setters and operators, assemblers, fabricators, and plant and system operators. Excludes team or work leaders.

14. Aircraft mechanics and service technicians

Photo: AdobeStock
Photo: AdobeStock

- Annual mean salary: $72,180

- Employment: 260

Maintain, repair, and rebuild aircraft structures, functional components, and parts, such as wings and fuselage, rigging, hydraulic units, oxygen systems, fuel systems, electrical systems, gaskets, or seals. Replace or repair worn, defective, or damaged components, using hand tools, gauges, and testing equipment.

15. Sales representatives, wholesale and manufacturing, except technical and scientific products

- Annual mean salary: $71,790

- Employment: 5,280

Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers to businesses or groups of individuals. Work requires substantial knowledge of items sold.

16. Elevator and escalator installers and repairers

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

- Annual mean salary: $71,450

- Employment: 220

Elevator and escalator installers and repairers, also called elevator and escalator constructors or mechanics, assemble, install, maintain, and replace elevators, escalators, chairlifts, moving walkways, and similar equipment.

17. Power plant operators

- Annual mean salary: $70,770

- Employment: 80

The Power Plant Operator will operate and maintain equipment used to produce electrical power.


  • Operates plant equipment to generate enough electrical power to meet demand; regulates flow of power between generating stations and substations.
  • Uses software, tools, and other devices to control and change equipment settings.
  • Monitors plants and dams and coordinates stream flow to meet power demands.
  • Regulates transmission loads, frequencies, and line voltages.
  • Performs preventive and required maintenance and troubleshoots equipment problems; tasks may include testing auto-start features or repacking valves.
  • Inspects turbines, generators, boilers, and other equipment; makes necessary repairs or modifications.
  • Cleans, lubricates, and maintains parts and equipment to prevent failure and degradation.
  • Drafts and maintains documentation related to equipment, rainfall data, and general operating instructions and schedules.
  • Maintains knowledge of plant operation best practices and safety protocols, which may include active participation in refresher and new training coursework.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.

18. Electrical power-line installers and repairers

- Annual mean salary: $69,980

- Employment: 480

Electrical power-line installers and repairers typically work outdoors. Their work involves driving or riding in trucks that hold the equipment they need. They also climb power poles to inspect the lines. The work also involves them working on building exteriors to connect lines, which can be high on the buildings.

19. Claims adjusters, examiners, and investigators

- Annual mean salary: $69,510

- Employment: 1,490

Review settled claims to determine that payments and settlements are made in accordance with company practices and procedures. Confer with legal counsel on claims requiring litigation. May also settle insurance claims.

Sample of reported job titles: Claim Representative, Claims Adjuster, Claims Analyst, Claims Examiner, Claims Representative, Claims Specialist, Corporate Claims Examiner, General Adjuster, Home Office Claim Specialist, Litigation Claim Representative

20. First-line supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers

Photo: Getty Images
Photo: Getty Images

- Annual mean salary: $68,990

- Employment: 3,030

Directly supervise and coordinate the activities of mechanics, installers, and repairers. May also advise customers on recommended services. Excludes team or work leaders.

Sample of reported job titles: Electrical and Instrumentation Supervisor (E and I Supervisor), Facilities Maintenance Supervisor, Facility Maintenance Supervisor, Maintenance Coordinator, Maintenance Foreman, Maintenance Manager, Maintenance Planner, Maintenance Superintendent, Maintenance Supervisor, Service Manager

21. First-line supervisors of construction trades and extraction workers

- Annual mean salary: $67,050

- Employment: 3,940

Directly supervise and coordinate activities of construction or extraction workers.

Also known as:

Coal Mine Production Foreman, Construction Foreman, Construction Supervisor, Electrical Supervisor, Field Operations Supervisor, Field Supervisor, Insulation Foreman, Roustabout Field Supervisor, Sheet Metal Foreman, Site Superintendent

22. Food service managers

- Annual mean salary: $65,180

- Employment: data not available

Food service managers are responsible for the daily operation of restaurants or other establishments that prepare and serve food and beverages. They direct staff to ensure that customers are satisfied with their dining experience, and they manage the business to ensure that it runs efficiently.

23. Electrical and electronics repairers, commercial and industrial equipment

- Annual mean salary: $64,230

- Employment: 250

What they do: Repair, test, adjust, or install electronic equipment, such as industrial controls, transmitters, and antennas. On the job, you would: Test faulty equipment to diagnose malfunctions, using test equipment or software, and applying knowledge of the functional operation of electronic units and systems.

24. Real estate sales agents

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

- Annual mean salary: $64,210

- Employment: 1,200

Real Estate Sales Agent Job Overview

They determine clients' needs, then show them homes that meet those needs. They also tour and value homes for sellers. They present purchase offers, generate purchase agreements and ensure a quick, seamless transaction between buyers and sellers.

25. Control and valve installers and repairers, except mechanical door

- Annual mean salary: $63,870

- Employment: 150

Install, repair, and maintain mechanical regulating and controlling devices, such as electric meters, gas regulators, thermostats, safety and flow valves, and other mechanical governors.

Sample of reported job titles: Control Valve Mechanic, Control Valve Technician, Electric Meter Technician, Instrument and Electrical Technician (I and E Technician), Instrument Technician, Measurement Technician, Meter Technician, Service Technician, Valve Technician, Water Plant Maintenance Mechanic

26. Telecommunications line installers and repairers

- Annual mean salary: $63,620

- Employment: 710

Install and repair telecommunications cable, including fiber optics. On the job, you would: Set up service for customers, installing, connecting, testing, or adjusting equipment. Travel to customers' premises to install, maintain, or repair audio and visual electronic reception equipment or accessories.

27. Gas plant operators

- Annual mean salary: $63,410

- Employment: 100

Job Description: Distribute or process gas for utility companies and others by controlling compressors to maintain specified pressures on main pipelines.

28. Real estate brokers

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

- Annual mean salary: $60,410

- Employment: data not available

A Real Estate Broker is a professional in charge of overseeing transactions between buyers and sellers. Their duties include drafting contracts and outlining all details, negotiating sale prices, and assisting each party's needs as they arise during negotiations.

Real Estate Broker responsibilities include:

  • Assisting sellers in how to best promote their properties to attract advantageous offers
  • Advertising properties through a variety of marketing techniques
  • Evaluating the clients' desires and economic capabilities to discover the appropriate suggestions

29. Crane and tower operators

- Annual mean salary: $60,170

- Employment: 220

Crane and tower operators use tower and cable equipment to lift and move materials, machinery, or other heavy objects. From a control station, operators can extend and retract horizontal booms, rotate the superstructure, and lower and raise hooks attached to cables at the end of their crane or tower.

30. Millwrights

- Annual mean salary: $59,650

- Employment: 80

A Millwright, or Industrial Mechanic, is a professional who operates industrial machinery found in construction sites, factories, power plants, and other sectors. Their duties include installing equipment, repairing items, and transferring machinery to needed locations.

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