Future career trends
It is no surprise that one of the fastest growing areas of employment in recent years relates to computer technology. Technological advance and the continued integration of IT and digital communications into the workplace throughout the private, public and voluntary sectors ensures that this trend will continue for some time. Systems analysts, designers and developers, computer programmers, web developers, consultants and information managers reflect the range of these career areas. Hardware engineers are also needed, working in infrastructure construction and repair, fibre, cable, satellites, etc.
Another guaranteed growth area is the healthcare sector. The increasing number of healthcare jobs is directly attributable to the growing age of the population – people are living longer so there are more people in the older age groups – and the expansion of treatments available for medical conditions, whether delivered in the primary healthcare sector or within hospitals. Consequently, there is also an expansion in the number of administrative and support roles needing to be filled.
Other careers deemed to be ‘hot’ future career prospects relate to areas of scientific advance, and in particular the “bio” sciences, such as biotechnology. Tissue engineers and gene programmers have been highlighted, but all skill levels are included – as companies grow, so does their administration infrastructure. Other new scientific areas include nanotechnology and energy technology.
Demographic changes are leading to other needs in addition to healthcare. Teaching and tourism, training and development, and care of the elderly are all areas where openings are set to increase, as are financial advisors.
Services that already exist will grow further as the population ages. Standard professions include the legal sector, police, teachers, tutors, etc. Meanwhile, there is a general return amongst certain income sectors of paying for domestic support with the services of maids and cleaners, drivers, etc. This is increasingly common as the higher divorce levels yield more one-parent families.
New services are developing that are opening out into recognized career fields. Many of these are provided directly to the consumer. Counselling and various complementary therapies are obvious examples, as well as physical training instructors and coaches.
Graduates: What is the best career for the future?
Unsurprisingly, growing numbers of openings for graduates exist in the areas identified above. IT careers include network systems and data communications analysts, software engineers, network and computer systems administrators, and data**** administrators.
Healthcare careers include physician assistants, physical therapists and dental hygienists. Additionally, the relatively new area of forensic science technician is also a ‘hot’ prospect. With additional vocational qualifications, graduates could consider entering the healthcare sector as a registered nurse, nursing aide or orderly, or a licensed practical or vocational nurse.
Preschool teaching is also a healthy employment area, as is hairdressing and cosmetology. Paralegal and legal assistant openings are also set to grow in number.
Graduate openings that currently offer most new jobs (as opposed to future career trends) are:
[LIST][*]Accountants and auditors.[*]Applications software engineers.[*]Computer systems analysts.[*]Secondary school teachers.[*]Systems engineers.[*]Systems analysts.[*]Network administrators.[*]Employment and recruitment specialists.[/LIST]Declining Careers
Unsurprisingly, the technological revolution has led to a downturn in a number of work areas. Declining careers include traditional printing jobs, such as typesetting, which have been largely replaced by electronic processes. Likewise, many secretarial posts have been lost to more general personal assistant or administrator roles. Work relating to fax machines, telephone and telex operations has also declined, as so many communication tasks are now fulfilled via the PC.
The opening up of the global marketplace has also brought about a decline in certain low-skill technology jobs that are now ****d overseas. These declining careers include programming, customer call centres, technical support and other services that can be provided by telephone or online workers. The same is occurring with data entry and straightforward accounting or banking jobs. Much work is going to countries such as India or Taiwan, where overheads and salaries are far lower.
Your choice of future career
Identification of future career trends is of some help when you are seeking a career direction. You now know that it will help you to look for a career that requires a high skill level but which cannot be done remotely. Therefore, you would be safest learning a skill or profession that requires your physical presence such as a nurse, physician, dental hygienist, or hair stylist. Within the IT sector, it is safe to assume that the majority of more complex jobs will stay onshore.
Ultimately, your choice of career must depend primarily on an assessment of your own skills, abilities, personal qualities, interests, availability and geographical ********. This is essential if you want to be successful, no matter how good the prospects are in that area of employment.