Go back

What is I-O Psychology?

The field of Industrial-Organizational (I-O) Psychology applies the science of psychology to all aspects of the workplace. "Industrial" refers to a wide variety of concepts related to personnel (e.g., selection, training, performance management), and "organizational" refers to concepts that apply more broadly to the organization as a whole (e.g., culture, change management, diversity). Another field of study related to I-O Psychology is Occupational Health Psychology (OHP). OHP is a separate, interdisciplinary field that focuses on employee health and wellbeing. Though OHP is not a sub-field of I-O Psychology, it is a natural extension for many I-O scientists and practitioners given the overlap between areas of interest. I-O psychologists who specialize in OHP issues often approach them from both a personnel and organizational perspective. 

graphic of io psyc subfields

As an I-O psychologist, you can contribute to the success of organizations by improving employee performance and wellbeing. According to the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP), I-O psychologists assist organizations by:

For more information about the study and practice of I-O Psychology, check out these links:

Growing Need for I-O Psychologists

The need for I-O Psychology is growing as organizations look towards evidence-based procedures in hiring, training, and retention of employees. Jobs in I-O Psychology can be found in every sector of the labor market- including fortune 500 companies, factories, sports teams, universities, and volunteer efforts, just to name a few.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs in I-O Psychology are one of the fastest-growing needs in the labor market. Before the pandemic, BLS predicted an 8% increase in growth between 2016 and 2026. The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the need for individuals specializing in I-O Psychology. As of August of 2021, the latest BLS report indicates the need for jobs in I-O psychology is at 13.3%, with a mean annual wage of $112,690 (BLS)

What do I-O Psychologists do?

Employment Training & Development

Employment Selection

Organizational Change & Development

Performance Management

Employment Motivation and Attitude

Occupational Health and Wellbeing

Where do I-O Psychologists work 

pie chart showing where io psychs work