growing career fields

Unsplash /Hush Naidoo

These five jobs will offer the most lucrative and rewarding prospects in upcoming years

Quick notes

  • Despite the rising prevalence of AI, there will still be plenty of good job opportunities for motivated individuals in the near future

  • A college degree isn’t necessary to land a high-paying job with growth opportunity

Deciding on a career can be nerve-wracking. You want to choose something that you will enjoy, but you also want to choose something that offers a secure future. With AI projected to replace humans in many roles in the coming decades, people are wondering which jobs are the safest bet.

Not to worry! There are still plenty of careers that offer a promising future. Many of them reflect our growing reliance on technology, and others have to do with the changing demographics of the country and the rising numbers of elderly adults.

These jobs are not only lucrative now, but they’re expected to be the top five fastest-growing careers in the next five years. Jump on them while you can!

Home health aides

Opportunities in the medical industry are almost endless – but for home health aides in particular, there is a predicted growth of 41 percent through 2026. The earnings may start low in these positions (about $22,000 per year, on average), but if you put in the work, you’ll definitely reap the benefits.

[Steve Buissinne]\[stevepb] via pixabay
A home health aide provides personalized, in-home care to individuals requiring extra help in their day-to-day lives. Often, their clients are senior citizens, but they can serve anyone who needs personal assistance due to health-related issues. Duties may include anything from bathing and dressing to meal preparation and planning. Typically, this career requires a high school diploma or equivalent, in addition to on-the-job training.

Software development

It should go without saying that the future lies in technology. Almost everything these days happens via computer, and that’s not going to stop. In fact, the field of software development is expected to see a 16 percent growth in the next five years.

Deciding on a career can be nerve wracking. You want to choose something that you will enjoy, but you also want to choose something that offers a secure future.

Software developers have been in demand since the advent of the computer – but with smartphones, tablets, and cloud-based computing now in the mix, the role is even more vital. Developers do everything from creating new apps and computer programs to developing the underlying systems that run networks.

Most entry-level jobs require a bachelor’s degree to get started, but you can expect an average salary of more than $100,000 a year.

Medical assisting

Another career slated for growth is that of the medical assistant. Medical assistants can hold positions in doctor’s offices, hospitals, jails, and many more places where their skills are required. Because of this flexibility of the environment, the role is expected to grow over 14 percent in the next five years.

A medical assistant’s job typically involves administrative tasks, such as record keeping and scheduling appointments, though they may also perform basic health care duties like measuring vital signs. To become a medical assistant, individuals must complete a certificate or degree program. Wages start at just over $30,000 a year.

Market research analysts and marketing specialists

Research pays big time – and being a market research analyst and marketing specialist offers HUGE benefits. For starters, it pays well, with the median hourly earnings around $48.00 an hour. In addition, the field is expected to grow by 12.6 percent in the next five years, opening more opportunities for seasoned vets and newbies alike.

[fancycrave1]\[fancycrave1] via pixabay
Research suggests that there may be a particular need for content marketing specialists in the coming years. As society becomes more reliant on digital media, there is a constant demand for fresh information and entertainment online. Digital content specialists can fill a variety of roles (often via remote work or freelance gigs), and no formal degree is required, though it’s smart to get trained in areas such as internet marketing or writing for the web.

Billing and posting clerk

Not all jobs slated for substantial growth over the next five years require a degree or any special skills. Some just require a person who is organized and good with numbers! With the rise of small businesses, the need for billing and posting clerks is becoming more and more evident. Business owners need individuals that can keep good records, prepare billing invoices, and much much more – hence, the 8.59 percent growth that is expected in the field.

Billing and posting clerks can perform a wide variety of duties, including generating invoices, reviewing purchase orders, and contacting customers to collect billing information. The role typically requires a high school diploma or equivalent, though some employers prefer a college degree in business or economics. The median wage is just over $30,000 a year, though there is a lot of opportunity for growth in the finance field.

A deeper dive – related reading on the 101:

You CAN switch careers after 40 — and still find success! 

While it can be challenging to turn a hobby you enjoy into a career that pays, it is possible