The 20 Fastest Growing Jobs of the Next Decade

Early Career hiring-job-growth-talking

The job landscape is constantly changing, and if the past year has taught us anything, it’s that opportunity and security in our careers is highly valuable. For those looking to make a career change or just getting started, it may be in your best interest to find a job that’s projected to grow despite evolving technology, global disasters, and shifting work trends. Future-proof your career and use this list to gain insight on the 20 fastest growing jobs of the next decade.

Using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), we provide information on the jobs and industries projected to grow the fastest from 2019 to 2029. Feel free to jump down to the infographic for a visual on the future of jobs in America.

Note: All median salary and growth rate information reported is from the 2020 Occupational Outlook Handbook.

 

wind-turbine-technician-inspection

 

1. Wind Turbine Service Technicians

Increasing at a rate 15 times that of other occupations, wind turbine service technicians or windtechs, are projected to be the fastest growing job in the next decade. A windtech’s main responsibilities involve the installation, maintenance, and repair of wind turbines. Their work requires them to travel to turbine sites and involves dangers such as climbing and rappelling at great heights. Despite this job’s dangerous drawbacks, aspiring windtechs can find opportunities around the nation and a decent salary without a four-year degree. Wind power is also the largest renewable energy source in the U.S., and jobs in this sector are expected to increase with energy demand.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 61%
  • Median Salary: $56,230
  • Education: Associate degree or technical school certificate, plus 12 months of training
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: Midwest, Great Plains, coastal areas

2. Nurse Practitioners

Nurse practitioners are another fast-growing occupation, with an above average growth rate of 52 percent. These health care professionals either coordinate with doctors or work independently to provide health care services to patients. While the scope of care varies by state, most nurse practitioners offer preventative and primary care such as performing health diagnoses and prescribing medicine. In order to qualify for this occupation, rigorous training and a master’s degree are required. The additional time spent in school may prove to be a worthwhile investment, as nurse practitioners make a median salary of $117,670.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 52%
  • Median Salary: $117,670
  • Education: Master’s degree and previously registered nurse license
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, New York, Texas, Florida, and Ohio

3. Solar Photovoltaic Installers

In addition to wind power, solar is another fast-growing source of energy and jobs. Solar photovoltaic (PV) installers are responsible for assembling and maintaining all types of solar energy systems. Although job growth is strong, there is competition for limited positions. Entry-level positions generally require a high school diploma, but candidates with technical schooling, community college credit, or apprenticeship experience have a more promising job outlook.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 51%
  • Median Salary: $46,470
  • Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, New Jersey, North Carolina, New York, and Virginia

4. Occupational Therapy Assistants

At a projected growth rate of 35 percent, occupational therapy assistants help address the demand for patients who need help recovering and maintaining the skills necessary to go about daily life. Under the guidance of occupational therapists, assistants in this profession lead therapeutic activities for developmental disabilities, socialization, and mobility. To become an occupational therapy assistant, you’ll need an associate degree in a health-related field and at least 16 weeks of hands-on fieldwork.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 35%
  • Median Salary: $62,940
  • Education: Associate degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: Ohio, Texas, Florida, New York, and Illinois

5. Statisticians

Statisticians are in demand in fields like business, health care, government, and engineering for their ability to analyze data and problem solve with statistical techniques. In order to develop their expertise, statisticians generally need to pursue a master’s or doctorate in a quantitative field. The job outlook for statisticians over the next decade is projected to increase, with an especially favorable outlook for those with strong data analysis skills, expert statistical knowledge, and experience with modeling or computer programming.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 35%
  • Median Salary: $92,270
  • Education: Master’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Texas

 

home-health-nurse-aid-healthcare

 

6. Home Health Aides

As the population of adults age 65 and older grows rapidly, trends toward aging in place create a large demand for home health care services. Home health aides help people with chronic illness or disabilities and any others who need assistance going about daily life. In addition to assisting with daily activities, they also administer basic health care such as monitoring vital signs. To be a home health aide, you’ll need at least a high school diploma or equivalent and training from a program or on the job.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 34%
  • Median Salary: $27,080
  • Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts

7. Physical Therapy Assistants

Physical therapy assistants (PTAs) help people with injuries or illnesses recover their ability for movement and help manage any pain associated with recovery. Before becoming a PTA, most positions require that you earn an associate degree and a license or certification obtained by passing the National Physical Therapy Exam. The job outlook for PTAs is growing faster than average thanks to demand from an aging population. To find ample opportunities, aspiring PTAs should look into home health, nursing homes, and orthopedic outpatient facilities.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 33%
  • Median Salary: $59,770
  • Education: Associate degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: Florida, Texas, Ohio, California, and New York

8. Medical and Health Services Managers

Managers of medical and health services are responsible for directing and coordinating the health services of a specific facility, group, or department. They’re also known as health care administrators or health care executives and must manage services according to changing regulations and technology. Although a bachelor’s degree is required, master’s degrees are becoming more common and are often preferred by employers. On top of a degree, clinical or administrative experience is required to reach a managerial position.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 32%
  • Median Salary: $104,280
  • Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: Less than 5
  • High Employment Locations: California, Texas, New York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania

9. Physician Assistants

Working in collaboration with doctors and surgeons, physician assistants (PAs) are needed to provide medical examinations, diagnoses, and treatments. To become a PA, a master’s degree is required, and candidates often need experience in patient care prior to applying to a graduate program. After earning your degree and obtaining a license, ample job opportunities exist for PAs in health care and medicine.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 31%
  • Median Salary: $115,390
  • Education: Master’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: New York, California, Texas, Florida, and Pennsylvania

10. Information Security Analysts

The role of information security analyst is important to protecting computer networks and systems for organizations. Thanks to the prevalence and evolution of cyberattacks, organizations are in need of professionals to develop security best practices and stay up to date on information technology and security trends. For those looking to enter this occupation, it’s important to get started in an information technology field to gain experience with computer systems and database security.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 31%
  • Median Salary: $103,590
  • Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: Less than 5
  • High Employment Locations: Virginia, Texas, California, Florida, and Maryland

 

data-scientist-working-charts-office

 

11. Data Scientists

Using data software and programming, data scientists’ careers revolve around transforming raw data into interpretable information. Data scientists analyze, visualize, and report their findings, as well as consult on analytical techniques used to solve problems. Top industries for data science opportunities include science, finance, and insurance. A bachelor’s degree is necessary to enter this field, but a graduate degree may be preferable to employers.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 31%
  • Median Salary: $98,230
  • Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Texas, New York, Illinois, and Washington

12. Derrick Operators

Oil and gas derrick operators rig and operate derrick equipment, which is used to dig oil wells and push drills into the ground. Derrick operators are also involved in a variety of activities that maintain, monitor, and control oil derricks. No formal education or experience is necessary to become a derrick operator, and training is offered on the job. The industries where this occupation is needed most are the mining, oil and gas extraction, and construction industries.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 31%
  • Median Salary: $47,920
  • Education: No formal education
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, North Dakota, and California

13. Rotary Drill Operators

As another fast-growing position involved in the extraction of oil and gas, rotary drill operators are responsible for assembling and operating drills that remove oil and gas from underground. This position demands moderate on-the-job training, despite no education or experience requirements. Job opportunities are available in the mining, coal, oil, and construction industries for those interested in this occupation.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 27%
  • Median Salary: $53,820
  • Education: No formal education
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: Texas, Oklahoma, California, New Mexico, and Louisiana

14. Roustabouts

Roustabout positions are also growing fast in the mining, oil and gas, and construction industries. This role is necessary for the setup and repair of oil field equipment, and it only requires moderate on-the-job training with no formal education. Other job titles for this occupation include floor hand, rig hand, and galley hand.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 25%
  • Median Salary: $39,420
  • Education: No formal education
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, North Dakota, and Colorado

15. Speech-Language Pathologists

To become a speech-language pathologist and help people with communication and swallowing disorders, you’ll need at least a master’s degree and a clinical license. Also known as speech therapists, they’re involved with the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of children and adults with disorders like stuttering. This role may work in health care facilities to treat patients who have suffered from a stroke, Parkinson’s disease, brain injury, cleft palate, or autism. An alternative route for this career is to provide counseling and programs in schools.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 25%
  • Median Salary: $80,480
  • Education: Master’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Texas, New York, Florida, and Illinois

 

speech-pathologist-helping-young-boy

 

16. Operations Research Analysts

Using advanced mathematical and analytical techniques, operation research analysts are tasked with solving complex problems in various industries. Operations research analysts have analytical skills that can be applied to health care, business, logistics, and science, and these skills are in demand by companies who desire savings and efficiency in their operations. A bachelor’s degree in operations research or another quantitative field is needed to get started, but those with graduate degrees will be more attractive candidates.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 25%
  • Median Salary: $86,200
  • Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Texas, Virginia, New York, and Florida

17. Behavioral Disorder, Substance Abuse, and Mental Health Counselors

Counselors for substance abuse, behavioral disorders, and mental health offer treatment for individuals who suffer from mental or behavioral problems that interfere with their everyday life. They evaluate and assess problems such as addiction or alcoholism and provide treatment and education for recovery. Typically, a bachelor’s degree and clinical license are necessary to become a counselor, but requirements may vary from a certification to a master’s degree depending on the state. As more people continue to seek out mental health services, opportunities in this career will continue to grow.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 25%
  • Median Salary: $47,660
  • Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Pennsylvania, New York, Florida, Massachusetts

18. Forest Fire Inspectors and Prevention Specialists

In order to prevent fire hazards, forest fire inspectors and prevention specialists examine residential and public buildings and outdoor areas for wildfire risks. They’re responsible for reporting fire code infractions, enforcing regulations, and reporting on fire conditions. As the prevalence of wildfires around the nation is increasing, forest fire inspector and prevention specialist positions will grow to meet demand. Although only a high school diploma is required, most who enter this field have previous firefighting experience and have completed some postsecondary education.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 24%
  • Median Salary: $42,150
  • Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Years of Experience Required: Less than 5
  • High Employment Locations: Florida, California, Georgia, Mississippi, and Arkansas

19. Restaurant Cooks

Aspiring restaurant cooks have many options for achieving this occupation. You don’t need formal education to become a restaurant cook, and on-the-job training on food safety and handling will teach you what you need to know. With that being said, many do choose to pursue culinary training through a professional institution, vocational program, or apprenticeship. Although this isn’t the fastest growing job on this list, with nearly 1.8 million positions projected in 2029, it’s definitely an occupation full of opportunity.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 23%
  • Median Salary: $28,800
  • Education: No formal education
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Texas, Florida, New York, and Pennsylvania

20. Animal Caretakers

If you’re passionate about working with pets and nonfarm animals, animal caretaking may be the career for you. As an animal caretaker, you’re tasked with feeding, grooming, and exercising animals, and you don’t need a formal education or any experience to perform this job. The number of animal companions continues to grow, and animal caretaking positions are expected to increase to fulfill new demand.

  • Projected Growth Rate: 23%
  • Median Salary: $26,080
  • Education: High school diploma or equivalent
  • Years of Experience Required: None
  • High Employment Locations: California, Texas, Florida, New York, and Illinois

Fastest Growing Industries

The future of jobs in America will be influenced by the fastest growing industries in the nation. Based on Bureau of Labor Statistics data, we determined the main industries for growth over the next decade to help you choose your next career path wisely.

Health Care

In the past decade, the population of adults age 65 and older has grown by over a third. As society ages rapidly, the demand for health care and mental health services is expected to increase. To keep up with this trend, new job openings in health care fields will expand to meet demand. Take a look at this overview of growth in health-related industries below to see where you might find a lucrative career:

  • Services for the Elderly and Disabled: 44% growth
  • Offices of Specialty Therapists: 34% growth
  • Other Ambulatory Health Care Services: 31% growth
  • Offices of All Other Health Practitioners: 31% growth
  • Offices of Mental Health Practitioners: 31% growth

Energy

High energy consumption in the United States drives demand for higher energy production and more jobs. With renewable energy production reaching record highs and expected to provide a boom in jobs over the next decade, wind and solar represent promising career paths in the energy sector. Although coal and oil production are trending down, fossil fuels will also provide a decent amount of job growth for the foreseeable future. Find the growth breakdown below:

  • Solar Electric Power Generation: 42% growth
  • Support Activities for Mining: 32% growth
  • Wind Electric Power Generation: 32% growth

Technology and Data Science

As the world and work become more and more dependent on technology and data, the demand for professional services and skills in this industry won’t slow down. Companies desire in-demand skills such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, and analysis to help run businesses, solve problems, and make strategic decisions. Consider a job in one of the fast-growing industries listed below:

  • Computer Systems Design and Related Services: 26% growth
  • Management and Technical Consulting Services: 22% growth

Many factors like salary, job security, and personal interests help determine your career path. It’s important to consider the advantages that ample job growth and opportunity may provide for your career. Benefits like career stability and longevity and a consistent income are very attractive in a constantly changing job landscape. Ultimately, your job should prioritize your values for work, life, and finances. Start your career in one of the fastest growing jobs to solidify your spot in the workplace of the future.

 

Mint_FastestGrowingJobs2021_IG

 

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics 1 2 3 | Career OneStop | CompTIA | LinkedIn | Manpower Group | PWC Global | TechRepublic | TowardDataScience | Udacity |

Tags:

Leave a Reply