Post-COVID, economic recovery will be driven in the technology sector according to the World Economic Forum. But don’t leave out the jobs that don’t require post-secondary education. The rapid advancement in technology is changing the workforce and some of the most popular skill sets and jobs are becoming obsolete. For many, it’s time to think about the future and decide about their careers. But your career for the future if you’re good with your hands (and good with people), is just a promising as ever.
As for Generation X, the rapid change is a time to look for an alternate career that is in sync with the future, many of which wouldn’t require taking out student loans.
Luckily, there are lots of jobs in the market for everyone. Here is a list of the 40 most in-demand jobs of the future:
#1 Solar Energy Technician
Recent climate change and its impact on the environment have pressured companies to experiment with clean technologies. It is estimated that the cost of solar appliances will become affordable in the next two to three years; therefore, solar energy technicians will be in high demand until 2026. Anyone can get the required technical skills without formal education. The median salary for a technician is around $40,500 depending on the alternative energy experience and skill level.
#2 Nurse Practitioner
The aging population will open many job opportunities in health care for individuals who have nursing skills. It is estimated that there will be more than 150,000 jobs opening in the United States for nurse practitioners in the coming years. Anyone with nursing experience can get a specialized degree in treating chronic and acute diseases, which can help achieve average pay rates of $105,500, in 2019.
#3 Software Developer
The rapid advancement in technology will create more than a million job openings for software developers in the next few years. Due to a growing demand for internet-of-things, mobile developers will lead the field as they can provide customized solutions to every growing need for software. Computer and information technology is a sure win for security moving into the future post-pandemic on into 2030 and beyond.
According to independent surveys, software developers enjoy one of the highest job satisfaction levels. The average pay of a software developer is around $85,000.
#4 Wind Energy Technician
A large number of private and government-funded projects rely on wind energy to help them sustain an eco-friendly environment. According to U.S. News Rankings, it is one of the best maintenance and repair jobs in the market.
By 2026, there will be an additional 5,600 Wind Energy Technician jobs available. These technicians help repair, maintain, and install wind turbines. The median salary of a wind energy technician is approximately $54,000.
#5 Physical Therapist
The growing population means that seniors require someone to assist them with their rehabilitation and pain management issues. A lot of senior housing communities are already looking for qualified physical therapists, which means that by 2026 an additional 67,100 jobs are estimated to be available for physical therapists. For the less experienced therapist, there is no shortage of jobs either. The median income of a physical therapist is $86,850.
#6 Registered Nurse
Nursing careers are one of the fastest-growing professional fields in the market due to an aging population. In the future, nursing will remain a highly demanding career that will provide more than 2 million jobs in the market. The numbers of jobs are estimated to remain constant in the long run.
According to Forbes, the nature of the nursing job may change as future nurses will require knowledge of advanced technologies. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary of a registered nurse is $68,450.
#7 Data Analyst
The influx of information has made it difficult for organizations to control and manage their information. Since the advent of the internet, large organizations often find it difficult to make sense of the available information.
As a result, data analysts will be in high demand in the future. The role of the analyst is to identify patterns in the data and present such data in a meaningful way, which is understandable. The typical salary of a data analyst range between $50,000 and $75,000 per year.
#8 Health Service Manager
Just as medical facilities continue to grow, they also require managers and assistant managers to serve their clients. The role of a health service manager is to oversee the legal, regulatory, and management aspects of hospitals, health institutions, clinics, senior housing, and retirement communities.
CNBC suggests that there will be more than 300,000 jobs available for health service managers by the end of 2026. As of 2018, the average salary of this occupation is $65,720.
#9 Digital Content Specialist
We are living in a digital era where everything seems to be connected with a digital device. To keep things running, digital content providers are becoming a top priority of tech-savvy companies. The role of the digital content specialist varies greatly depending on the job title.
A graphic designer or a freelancer working from home can be described as a digital content specialist. There is no typical pay scale associated with this job; however, digital content specialists enjoy a lot of flexibility in their working hours, and one can do this well with just some good experience under their belt and many not even requiring so much as an associate degree.
#10 Information Security Analyst
The intricate network of computers and cloud networks makes it easier for hackers and bad guys to steal important information. Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated in how they penetrate computer systems.
To safeguard the public interest, information security analysts are a type of police force of the future. The job of information security analysts is to make systems impenetrable. There will be more than 100,000 jobs in the next five years, making it one of the fastest-growing opportunities for those with degrees in computer science or associated. As of 2017, the average salary in the field was $70,401.
#11 Computer Systems Analyst
Degrees in Computer Science will remain attractive as the need for computer analysts to continue to grow. These individuals work to implement hardware and software solutions for organizations.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that there will be more than 450,000 jobs for computer systems analysts from 2016 and 2026. The average salary is $92,000, while the median salary of a software developer is $106,710.
#12 Biomedical Engineer
Biomedical engineering is a relatively new job that has attracted a lot of attention lately. These engineers create medical devices that can help doctors and physicians in their day-to-day activities.
Artificial organs, body implants, and biomedical accessories are just a few examples of their intuitive creations. There will be approximately 16,000 jobs to fill between 2016 and 2026. The median salary of a biomedical engineer is $85,620.
#13 Mechanical Engineer & Specialist
Mechanical engineers and technicians are in high demand due to the growing demands from the industry to create high-tech equipment. These types of equipment include X-ray printers, advanced robotics, virtual reality hardware, and a lot of other gadgets.
In the next five to six years, there will be more than 150,000 job openings in the field. In 2018, the average salary of a mechanical engineer is $85,880.
#14 Electronics Engineer
Electronic engineers often work at the back-end of most electronic devices. They take care of computer circuits, wirings, and smaller components that power a device.
The exponential rise in technological power has increased the demand for electronic engineers. It is expected that the demand will remain steady in the long run. By 2016, more than 100,000 jobs for electronic technicians and half as much for electronic engineers will be available. According to ECE, the median salary of an electronic engineer is $102,180.
#15 Rehabilitation Counselor
Rehabilitation counselors help people with disabilities to achieve their goals by providing them counseling services. In this digital age, large organizations and human resource groups are also looking for counselors who can work and advise their workers on how to manage their lives without spending excess time on social media and related platforms. Using psychotherapy, certified rehabilitation counselors remain in demand as the profession is expected to grow more than 15% within the next two to four years.
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#16 Blockchain Developer
Blockchain is a new technology that became famous due to its implementation in bitcoin trading. An article in the Computer World suggests that Blockchain is quickly becoming a widespread phenomenon as governments, the private sector, and financial institutions are experimenting with Blockchain to protect the important data of consumers. Salaries of Blockchain developers are on par with AI – or Artificial Intelligence experts as an average engineer makes between $150,000 and $175,000.
#17 Drone Pilot
As drones go mainstream, many companies are hiring individuals that can easily handle drones in a public place. Perhaps, Amazon is the most popular example of a company using drone pilots to maneuver their gadgets for packet deliveries. As local governments pass new laws to allow drones, city governments are already hiring drone pilots for projects such as environmental cleaning and weather reports.
If you’re good at handling drones, it may be the time to become a drone pilot as average salaries are between $33,000 and $44,000 in the government sector. Private companies such as Amazon pay higher as starting pay scales can reach more than $50,000.
#18 HVAC Technician
In this modern era, new buildings demand certified installation technicians who can carefully manage the installation process. Accordingly, HVAC technicians are in demand because they are experts in providing safe solutions to install and manage futuristic appliances.
You can easily become HVAC technicians by enrolling in a two-year college. Many colleges also offer one year accelerated program; whereas some also offer a job guarantee on passing the 15-month course.
#19 Personal Care Attendant
As the population ages, seniors require someone to take care of them. A personal care attendant takes care of the personal needs of the aged. They may help individuals do minor chores such as helping them brush their teeth, bathing them, or assisting them in using bathrooms. There are hundreds and thousands of jobs available for individuals who are good at helping others.
There is no formal education requirement for a personal care attendant. A reputable agency can easily provide a job starting from $20,000 because there are more than 770,000 new jobs available in the market for anyone interested in earning some extra cash.
#20 Fast-Food Worker
Just like personal care attendants, fast-food workers who can prepare meals and serve with a smile remain in high demand. These workers mostly work in fast-food restaurants such as McDonald’s and Burger King. Their salary is mostly dependent on their skills.
For instance, an average fast-food worker makes around $22,500 a year working full-time or part-time. It is estimated that there will be more than 578,000 job openings for fast-food workers in the next two to three years.
#21 Home Health Aide
Just like a personal care attendant, there are plenty of opportunities for the home health aide. The responsibilities of a home health aide differ slightly from a personal care attendant. A home health assistant provides basic health services to homeowners.
It can include checking vital health signs, administering medications, and helping with a simple exercise. Due to their medical background, the median salary is $25,330 depending on the workload. There are more than 430,000 new job openings for this profession.
#22 General and Operations Manager
General Managers will remain in high demand because businesses need experienced individuals who can help handle the job. Usually, large organizations have one general manager in a department who oversees various operational managers involved anywhere in the business process.
In contrast, small and mid-size companies may only have a general manager to take care of everything. Typically, you require an MBA degree and some experience to start a career as General Manager. In the next five to seven years, there will be more than 205,000 job openings for General Managers and Operational Managers. The median salary of the job title is approximately $125,000.
#23 Heavy-Truck Driver
If you have the know-how and experience of sitting behind the wheels of large trucks, heavy-truck drivers are in high demand due to NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) and other trade routes. There are also a lot of job openings for local drivers who are skilled in maneuvering trucks in tight areas, according to statistics by a prominent career website, CollegeGrad.com.
Local knowledge of the area is also a widely sought-after skill that can help get better pay rates. This is a physically and mentally challenging job that often requires long hours of work. If you think you have the guts to take it on; the median salary of a heavy-truck driver is $45,570, which excludes perks and bonuses. In 2019, there are more than 100,000 job openings in the field.
#24 Handy-Man Jobs
Both carpenters and plumbers are in high demand in the United States and Canada. These jobs don’t require any degree; however, trade certification improves the level of pay. A carpenter can do a lot of things from installing cabinets to setting concrete forms for the bridge. With a solid real estate market, there will always be a need for a good handyman.
Likewise, plumbers install and maintain piping systems in houses, offices, and public places. These jobs are expected to grow much faster than average from now to 2026. There are approximately 80,000 job openings for each of these trades; whereas the average salary is $52,000 and $58,000 for carpenters and plumbers, respectively.
#25 Computer User Support Specialist
The growing use of the Internet is also shaping job specifications as customer service specialists are turning into computer user support specialists (whereas web developers, in contrast, focus on building websites accessed by these computer users). A large number of high-tech companies require computer support individuals who can help clients understand how to use the technology.
Mostly, these support specialists work offline where they answer questions; attend phone calls; reply to queries using online chat. Their major role is to resolve problems by helping individuals understand tech issues. The average salary of a computer user support specialist is $55,000.
Despite a large number of individuals earning their accounting degrees, there is still a huge demand for accountants and auditors. An accountant helps manages the company’s financial statements. They also carry out a detailed audit of the company and help them comply with the new rules.
Accountants also help in maintaining accurate records of tax collection. A CPA, Certified Public Accountant, leads to a lot of opportunities in the public and private sector. The median salary of a CPA is close to $79,000.
#27 Market Research Analyst
Market research is an integral part of a successful business strategy. Many large and medium-sized companies require the assistance of market research analysts to understand buying patterns and behavior of consumers.
The job requires gathering useful information from the market and analyzing it in an easy-to-understand format, which can be applied to business practice. If you have good analytical skills, and you love working with mathematical problems, market research is for you. There are more than 138,000 jobs available in the market under this job title. The average salary of the analyst is close to $71,000.
#28 Medical Secretary
Hospitals are not the only places where we go for medical treatment. In fact, a lot of medical jobs are found in private medical institutions and clinics; therefore, medical secretaries are in demand.
Their primary responsibility is scheduling appointments, billing patients, and managing workload. If you have a medical background, it may be time to become a secretary. Love medical records? There are more than 125,000 new job openings for medical secretaries, and the median income of $38,000 is also higher than other medical attendants.
#29 Financial Manager
If you love working with numbers and analyzing the health of a business, there is seldom a better job than a financial manager. Anyone who has experience in running a financial database and statistical software can land a lucrative job with one of the larger financial companies such as banks, venture capital firms, and investment companies.?
The position usually requires at least a Master’s degree. However, if you have at least ten years of experience working in the financial sector, you can get a financial management position without a Masters. There will be more than 100,000 such openings in the next one to five years paying an average of $146,830.
#30 Dental Assistant
Every dentist needs an assistant who can take X-rays, sterilize equipment, and educate visitors on how to improve their dental hygiene. These assistants are the right hand of a dental surgeon who needs them during surgery to organize and hand dental tools.?
With the passage of time, the role of a dental assistant may grow wider depending on the skills. Sometimes, a dental assistant is also the first step to becoming a professional dental doctor. Dental assistants must pass an accredited medical exam before they can practice dentistry. The average salary of a dental assistant is close to $40,000.
#31 Agricultural Managers
In a quest to introduce new farmland technology and resist climate change, agricultural managers who have experience in farming are in high demand. If you’re willing to relocate to remote areas, agricultural managers can find a lot of opportunities in both the government and the private sector.
They plan, direct, and coordinate activities in ranch, aqua-cultural operations, and farmland. By 2026, there will be 68,700 new positions in this field; while the average present-day pay of agricultural managers is $66,360.
#32 Construction Supervisor
A growing and stable economy ensure that there are ample opportunities for construction supervisors. The position does not require any advanced degree; therefore, anyone with a high-school diploma is a potential candidate to become the first-line supervisor of trade and extraction workers. There will be more than 70,000 new positions by 2026 for a position that already pays approximately $62,980 on an annual basis.
#33 Elementary School Teacher
Teaching has remained in demand due to increased enrollment of youngsters even despite the recent battles for higher teacher wages. It means that anyone who can manage and teach young children basic skills in school is a prime candidate to land a great job with excellent perks.
In the United States, more than 15,000 elementary schools teachers are required until the next ten years. Becoming an elementary school teacher doesn’t seem a bad choice as the average salary of teachers was $55,800, in 2016.
#34 Health Specialties Teacher
Anyone who has an advanced medical degree and a research background can teach students topics related to dentistry, medicine, and lab technology. In the last two years, there’s a number of vacancies have opened in public health, veterinary, and therapy medicine.
The only caveat is the requirement to get a professional or doctorate degree before you can teach post-secondary students. More than 66,000 jobs are projected to be available by 2026, which seems attractive as health specialty teachers were paid almost $100,000, in 2016.
Lawyers remain in high demand in certain niche specialties. Most lucrative job offers are available in areas such as civil litigation, environmental law, bankruptcy, labor law, intellectual property, e-discovery practice, and foreclosure law.
Despite the potential demand, lawyers need to be flexible in their relocation demands as the private sector seeks lawyers who can travel to other countries if required. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be more than 75,000 new openings by 2026. Typical education requirements include a doctoral or professional degree, while the average income is more than $120,000 per annum.
#36 Medical Technologist
Job growth in medical research requires hospitals and clinics to build research labs. These labs require experienced medical technologists who can perform medical tests and analyze body fluids. Their job mainly consists of collecting samples for medical reports.
It is estimated that there will be a 14% growth rate of medical technologists in the next five years, which is attractive considering that most positions require only a bachelor’s degree, and the annual median salary is $51,770.
#37 Retail Salesperson
If you need a job that doesn’t require you to come up with a college degree or any experience, you should start looking for a job as a salesperson in some of the well-known superstores.
In the next two to three years, there will be plenty of jobs available in the retail sector as the position has some of the highest growth rates at 16.6% every year.
The salary mostly depends on the type of retail store and the experience of a candidate. Popular retail outlets may be your best bet to land a decent salary and employee perks.
#38 Customer Service Representative
Regardless of how large businesses operate, they will always need someone to handle their customer support. In the last few years, businesses in North American and Europe have started to hire their own workforce instead of outsourcing CSR jobs to third-world countries.
The reason for reverting back to the local workforce is evident in improved productivity using local resources. The change is reflected in a growth rate of 15.5% in the next two to three years, which is higher than most professions described in this list.
Anyone who has been to a hospital must have met a phlebotomist. These are individuals who are experts in extracting and analyzing blood samples. They draw blood for blood transfusions, donations, and research. You don’t require an advanced degree to become a phlebotomist.
According to Careerignitor.com, a certificate or diploma from a university, technical institution, or community college is sufficient to get the job. Individuals with professional certification from schools such as the National Center for Competency Testing are in high demand. There will be more than 152,600 projected openings until 2026. As of 2016, the median annual wage of phlebotomists was $32,710.
#40 Rotary Drill Operator
Oil and gas platforms rely on the operational skills of rotary drill operators to take care of the drilling operations. They oversee a variety of tasks associated with erecting and dismantling machinery. From maintaining machines to managing the drilling crew, rotary drill operators are the backbone of drilling operations.
Formal education is not required to enter the career field. Most operators start by gaining first-hand experience working on the oil rigs. Just like a motor mechanic, a rotary drill operator must have knowledge of his machines, tools, environment, and strong technical expertise. The projected total employment in the field is expected to be more than 20,000, in 2026. The median pay of a rotary drill operator is approximately $58,000.
Hopefully, everyone will be able to find something for them in this technology-driven market that requires technical skills and market know-how. If you’re looking to change your career or you are not sure about your career path, this list can help you guide you in the right direction.
The job market is constantly evolving along with several driving factors including information technology advances. The good news is that future careers that involve personal services, from a financial advisor to advanced practice registered nurses, there will always be the need for those in the trades and labor markets. Vertical farming, for example, is expected to rise in popularity and we’ll still need plumbers and electricians no matter how smart homes become.
So what’s your best option for a future job? Go with what you know or love and find out where it’s heading. You’ll be sure to avoid enduring job losses if the job role can transition laterally to something related.
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