Last week, I looked at my Google Analytics data for Resumes that Shine to find out what blog posts were most popular with readers. Surprisingly, I learned that, while readers often say they need work right now, my post covering projections for the next 5 to 10 years has been read more than any other post. As a result, I thought it would be helpful to offer a little more information on long-term trends.
The most useful source of information turned out to be the online version of a reference book I used for the first time when I started thinking about a college major during my junior year in high school—the Occupational Outlook Handbook, (OOH). The OOH is prepared by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) at the US Department of Labor. The OOH continues to be updated although other reference books such as the Dictionary of Occupational Titles have been replaced with more modern tools years ago.
BLS gathered much data for this research in 2019, and last modified the data in September, 2020. Indications are that the Pandemic has accelerated long-term economic trends, rather than radically changing tends.
|Rank||Occupation||Growth Rate (%)||2019 Median Salary ($)|
|1||Wind turbine service technicians||61 %||$52,010|
|3||Solar photovoltaic installers||51%||$44,890|
|4||Occupational therapy assistants||35%||$61,510|
|6||Home health & personal care aides||34%||$25,280|
|7||Physical therapist assistants||33%||$58,790|
|8||Medical/ health services managers||32%||$100,980|
|10||Information security analysts||31%||$99,730|
The projections reveal interesting facts. All the job categories are in healthcare and technical fields. Several jobs pay high salaries and require advanced degrees. Others pay modest salaries but require less training and education.
According to the BLS research, growth rates in these fields will be above average. The demand for nurse practitioners, for example, will grow more than 50% according to the Occupational Outlook Handbook. BLS reported the growth rate for physician assistant jobs is projected to be 31% even though this job is ranked ninth on the list.
The majority of the 10 fastest-growth rate occupations are in healthcare.
It is not surprising that six of the 10 fastest growing occupations are related to healthcare. The occupations include nurse practitioners, occupational therapy assistants, home health and personal care aides, physical therapist assistants, medical and health services managers, and physician assistants.
Salaries for the fastest-growing medical and health occupations vary widely. Physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and healthcare managers had 2019 median salaries in excess of $100,000 per year. Occupational therapy assistants earned median salaries just above $61,500, while physical therapy assistants had median earnings just under $58,800 per year.
The demand for home health and personal care aides will increase more than one-third by 2029, but wages are low. The 2019 median salary of $25,280, or about $12.15 per hour is not a living wage in high-cost metropolitan areas.
All the remaining fields are related to technology and mathematics.
The remaining four occupations on the top ten growth occupations list are related to engineering and math. They include wind turbine service technicians, solar photovoltaic installers, statisticians, and information security analysts.
Salaries in these four fields also vary widely. Wind turbine service technicians—workers that maintain windmills that generate electrical power– earned median incomes just over $52,000 annually in 2019. Solar photovoltaic installers—workers setting-up devices that convert sunlight into electricity–earned nearly $44,900 in 2019. Neither occupation requires a college degree.
The two occupations that usually require university degrees and professional certifications—statisticians and information security analysts–paid annual salaries in excess of $90,000.
Green jobs are in the top 3 job categories.
It is also worth noting that 2 of the top 3 jobs on the list—wind turbine service technician and solar photovoltaic installers are so-called “green jobs” related to renewable energy. According to the OOH, the demand for wind turbine service technicians will increase 61% while the demand for photovoltaic installers is projected to increase 51%. Federal investment in green jobs may significantly increase in the near future, too.
All high growth-rate jobs do not require advanced degrees.
You probably think about the time and cost needed for years of education when considering healthcare and technical jobs. That’s true for occupations on the list paying more than $90,000 or more per year. Jobs such as wind turbine service technicians, solar photovoltaic installers, and home health aides do not require college degrees. Physical therapy assistants and occupational therapy assistants are expected to have associates degrees. So, you may be able to find work in a high-growth field without going back to school.
Building powerful career communications tools can help, too.
The right career communications documents—resumes, cover letters, and your LinkedIn profile—will help you land a job in a high-growth occupation, or any other job you are qualified to fill. Take a look at the resume examples on our Web site, and then click here to get a spot on our complimentary consultation calendar. We will be here for the holiday season and beyond.A final note for the week: Every line in the table above, and on the more detailed table at the OOH Website, links to details regarding each occupation. Your job search will be more successful when you do career exploration using the OOH and other sources if you do not have a job target already.