GS Pay Scale 2022

GS Pay Scale 2022 – Every January of the year, the GS Pay Scale is adjusted as the universal nationwide pay increase, for salaries and wages of private-sector employees. In general, federal employees will be able to move to more advanced grades by promotion at specific intervals all the way through the highest potential of a job promotion, which is typically one whole year at minimum. These grades are determined by policies, standards of qualification, and regulations established by OPM.

GS Pay Scale 2022
GS Pay Scale 2022

What is the GS Pay Scale?

If you aren’t familiar yet with the pay scale of the General Schedule (GS), it is the pay scale set by the federal government to define the salaries and wages of more than 70% of federal workers. The standard of payment schedule is adjusted each year on the month of January as all-inclusive pay raise, again as stated above, based on the changes in salaries and wages of private-sector employees.


There are three different factors used by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to determine the GS Pay Scale 2022. This established system is relevant to the majority of civilian federal workers, with the exception of workers that belong to the category of Senior and Executive levels. Here are the said three factors:

  • General Schedule Pay Grade For GS Pay Scale 2022

This system of pay grades comprises 15 different ranges of categories. The lowest category is GS-1 and the highest is GS-15. Each one of the employees is assigned to a certain grade based on several factors such as job requirements and responsibility level. For instance, someone with the certification of higher education will acquire a higher position than those with lower education levels.

  • General Schedule Step For GS Pay Scale 2022

The system of grades in the previous factor is divided into 10 steps each. There is a 3% salary difference between every step – the step level is directly proportional to the amount of salary. An employee is able to move to a higher step if they reach a new seniority level or gain a promotion. Typically, it’d take someone about 18 years to go from the lowest step all the way into the highest one within a grade.

  • Locality For GS Pay Scale 2022

The locality system refers to the area in which the employee is assigned to work. It adjusts to the initial pay for living costs in a particular geographic region. It means that the employee’s pay rate varies by location even with the same grade position and step within the grade. The purpose of locality pay is to accommodate workers’ needs in areas with more expensive living costs such as those who dwell in major metropolitan cities.

The employers may advertise and assign jobs at any appropriate grade according to them – just as the employees may use their education and experience to obtain higher grades. It applies to both federal and non-federal workers. After the employee is hired, they entitle to receive raise each time they are promoted to higher steps and grades.

There are some positions in the field of work that is labeled as ‘corporate ladder’. Employees in those positions are qualified to be promoted to more advanced grades without having to apply for a new position. For instance, recent graduates with a corporate ladder will be able to move from GS-5 grade, to GS-7 grade, to GS-9 grade in a span of three years without having to switch jobs. As an employee or job-seekers, you may find the promotion possibility and grade of certain jobs at the job announcement in the overview section.

The GS Pay Scale 2022 is utilized by the majority of government agencies, but there are over forty agencies and/or their subdivision that use different pay scales. Some of them use the GS system with special rates. Some jobs have initial pay rates determined by the federal government due to the requirement of high skills for roles that are difficult to fill, especially in fields like medical, technical, and scientific ones. Some of the instances of agencies that obtain special pay rates are the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

GS Pay Scale 2022

GS Grade Step 1 Step 2 Step 3 Step 4 Step 5 Step 6 Step 7 Step 8 Step 9 Step 10
GS-1 $20,251 $20,930 $21,603 $22,273 $22,946 $23,340 $24,006 $24,677 $24,704 $25,332
GS-2 $22,771 $23,313 $24,067 $24,704 $24,982 $25,717 $26,451 $27,186 $27,921 $28,655
GS-3 $24,846 $25,674 $26,502 $27,330 $28,158 $28,986 $29,814 $30,641 $31,469 $32,297
GS-4 $27,891 $28,820 $29,750 $30,679 $31,609 $32,539 $33,468 $34,398 $35,327 $36,257
GS-5 $31,205 $32,245 $33,285 $34,326 $35,366 $36,407 $37,447 $38,487 $39,528 $40,568
GS-6 $34,784 $35,944 $37,103 $38,263 $39,422 $40,581 $41,741 $42,900 $44,060 $45,219
GS-7 $38,654 $39,942 $41,231 $42,519 $43,808 $45,097 $46,385 $47,674 $48,963 $50,251
GS-8 $42,808 $44,235 $45,662 $47,089 $48,516 $49,944 $51,371 $52,798 $54,225 $55,652
GS-9 $47,281 $48,857 $50,433 $52,009 $53,585 $55,161 $56,737 $58,313 $59,889 $61,465
GS-10 $52,067 $53,803 $55,539 $57,275 $59,011 $60,747 $62,483 $64,219 $65,955 $67,691
GS-11 $57,206 $59,113 $61,020 $62,928 $64,835 $66,742 $68,650 $70,557 $72,464 $74,372
GS-12 $68,567 $70,852 $73,138 $75,424 $77,710 $79,996 $82,282 $84,568 $86,854 $89,140
GS-13 $81,534 $84,252 $86,970 $89,688 $92,406 $95,124 $97,841 $100,559 $103,277 $105,995
GS-14 $96,349 $99,560 $102,771 $105,983 $109,194 $112,405 $115,617 $118,828 $122,040 $125,251
GS-15 $113,332 $117,110 $120,887 $124,665 $128,443 $132,221 $135,998 $139,776 $143,554 $147,332