Data scientists earn $128,000 as a median salary. Financial advisors make $89,000. Registered nurses bring in about $68,000. While these are above-average salaries, there aren’t enough workers to meet demand for these jobs.
That’s according to an annual report released Thursday by job search portal CareerCast. Using recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and related industry sources, CareerCast tracks 200 jobs and pulls out the 10 most in-demand fields.
In its 2017 report, trucker and information security analyst displaced marketing managers and electrical engineers in the top 10 list. They now join home health aides, physical therapists, and software engineers, where demand for workers is expected to grow in the double digits over the next seven years.
So why the gap between supply and demand? Essentially there aren’t enough qualified workers for the more skilled professions, says Kyle Kensing, online content editor for CareerCast. For example, even though data scientist and information security analyst are essentially new professions, colleges and universities aren’t churning out enough graduates with the necessary skills to keep pace with openings, he says. Similarly, home health aides and registered nurses are in an ever-expanding field because the Baby Boom generation, the largest after millennials, is moving into old age and has growing health care needs. Nursing for example has the single most openings of all careers, and is expected to need an additional 440,000 workers by 2024, according to Careercast.
By contrast, trucking, which does not require an advanced education, is suffering from the lingering effects of the financial crisis, when the transportation industry took a hit. According to Kensing, people in the field left for other types of work, leaving a worker gap as the economy improved. The industry will need an additional 100,000 workers in the next seven years, he says.
And we can expect a continuation of many of these trends going forward.
“IT and healthcare will be the backbones of the workforce,” Kensing says.