Everyone wants to find their perfect job. With a growing emphasis on work-life balance and self-care among young generations, workers are looking for jobs that can provide them with long-term financial security, give them a creative and challenging workplace, and keep their stress at a minimum. With new generations of workers getting ready to enter the workforce, the top question is almost always what jobs and careers will offer the most growth and will provide the most security in the next decade.
The U.S. Department of Labor and Statistics releases reports detailing the projected growth of various career areas, giving future workers a chance to research fulfilling, stable, and financially rewarding job opportunities. Keep reading to discover the careers that show the most growth potential for the next several years.
Health Care Jobs
Health care is still projected to lead the pack as the fastest-growing industry for new jobs until the year 2026. Though these jobs often require significant education and training, the result can be a long-term career with a high salary and numerous benefits that will continue to bring more opportunities. Top jobs in the health care field include nurse practitioners, registered nurses, home health aides, personal care aides, physician assistants, and physical therapy assistants. As older generations age, the demand for health care providers in all areas will likely continue to increase.
With median salaries ranging from $108,400 for physician assistants to $21,920 for personal care aides, the educational requirements and time commitment for health care jobs vary substantially. Though nurse practitioners and physician assistants will need the most education, other jobs in this industry, like home health aides, can be obtained with a high school diploma, on-the-job training, and certifications in CPR and first aid.
Jobs in Alternative Energy
An increased focus on alternative energy across the United States and the world means a parallel growth for jobs in this growing industry. Wind and solar energy are two of the top areas showing massive projected increases in employment opportunities: about a 100% change between 2016 and 2026. The top two jobs on the list are wind turbine technicians (96.3% percent increase) and solar photovoltaic installers (104.9% percent increase).
Wind turbine technicians can make an average salary of $52, 260, and training for this career can take as little as six months, though more typically an associate’s degree program would take around two years. A physically demanding job, it often requires technicians to ascend ladders more than 200 feet in the air to repair equipment at the top of a wind turbine, carry heavy equipment on their backs, and work in confined spaces. Job duties for wind turbine technicians can include inspecting the exterior of the wind turbines, climbing to replace or repair equipment near the top, testing different systems in use, and collecting data from the turbines. The job can also involve performing general maintenance, including replacing older equipment.
Solar photovoltaic (PV) installers make an average salary of about $42,680 as reported in May 2018, and the only requirements are a high school diploma paired with on-the-job training. Some PV installers take courses at technical or community colleges as well before they begin work. As solar panels become more common, the demand for PV installers should balloon substantially in the coming years. The main job duties for these workers include planning solar system configurations, installing and testing the system, performing routine maintenance, applying weather sealant, and connecting the system to the electrical panel. Most of the work takes place outdoors, typically on roofs, though sometimes workers go inside small spaces like attics or crawl spaces to connect to a building’s electric system.
Software and Technology
With nearly every aspect of our lives lived online in today’s world, it should come as no surprise that jobs in software and technology are still on a steady increase. Creating websites, designing and developing software, working in robotics: all these different occupations are still on the rise. As more technology is created, technicians who help troubleshoot and repair these newly developed technologies will also be in demand.
Often topping lists of the best jobs, software developers work in network systems software and user-facing applications, making a median salary of $110,000 or $103,620 respectively, as reported in May 2018. Software developers provide the creativity and engineering behind computer programs, and often work in developing applications or the underlying platforms that support them. The demand for these jobs doesn’t show any signs of slowing down, with a projected percent change of 30.7% by 2026.
Software developers need excellent computer programming skills and often obtain a bachelor’s degree in computer science, which can take around four years. Typical job duties for this career include developing and maintaining new software, performing testing and planning upgrades, and analyzing users’ needs in order to create the most useful applications possible.
With so many diverse fields expecting continued growth and adding more jobs, everyone has the opportunity to find a job or career that will bring them increased success in the next decade. If job security is your top concern, give these career options a chance.