Genetics, technology, data feature heavily among 2018's fastest-growing job categories
- Genetic counselor tops CareerCast's list of the best jobs for 2018 in the company's newly released "2018 Jobs Rated Report." Citing statistics from the National Society of Genetic Counselors, CareerCast said that the genetic counseling field grew 85% since 2006. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the profession to grow at a rate of 29% over the next eight years, CareerCast said.
- Technology is ushering in most new jobs, increasing the demand for skilled workers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. Among the top 10 job titles are mathematician (#2), data scientist (#7), information security analyst (#8), operations research analyst (#9) and actuary (#10).
- Digital disruption and low pay mean a lower place on the scale, according to CareerCast. The lowest ranking jobs are taxi driver, advertising salesperson, corrections officer, newspaper reporter and broadcaster. Other jobs on the decline include bookbinder, watch repairer and meter reader.
Innovation logically changes and even eliminates certain jobs by making some tasks and skills obsolete. Recruiters have a front-row seat to this dynamic, which is reflected in the skills demanded by job postings and department heads. At present, those with tech skills like programming are in such high demand that employers far beyond Silicon Valley are looking to hire workers with those skills.
Analytics skills also appear in demand; HR industry experts have long indicated the particular need for people analytics as a way to better evaluate important metrics like employee engagement, satisfaction and performance management. The ability to use (and, some predict, work alongside) algorithms and physical machines will only grow in importance across industries — from surgeons in operating rooms to couriers on delivery routes.
But are employers prepared to find this skilled talent? And, if not, are they willing and able to invest in necessary training, upskilling and retooling? To prepare workers for today's emerging professions, let alone the jobs that don't yet exist, it might not be too early to envision what work might look like 10 or even five years down the road.
At minimum, employers should be prepared for the workplace disruption predicted by experts. Governments are also evaluating which jobs in local communities are most likely to be affected and starting proactive initiatives that link workers in at-risk occupations with training, formal education and other resources. HR leaders might consider bringing executive attention to these and other opportunities.