Every two years, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics updates their employment projections. The information appearing in this article was first published in January 2018, and includes job growth forecasts for the years 2016 through 2026.
This article is going to summarize some of the research conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in conjunction with the Department of Labor. The information includes several projections, including workforce demographics, job growth trends, education, training, and replacements.
According to this latest release, the civilian labor force is expected to grow by 7.4% over a ten-year timeframe from 156 million to nearly 168 million individuals. This statistic includes all workers over the age of 16. The fastest rate of growth will occur for individuals 55 and older, which will experience a 17.9% rate of growth. This increase is a direct result of an aging baby boomer population.
The labor force continues to grow in diversity too. Back in 1994, Hispanics represented 9.5% of the workforce and this number is expected to grow to nearly 21% by 2026, which is a 116.0% increase over the next ten years.
Between 2016 and 2026, the following six occupational groups are projected to provide over 50% of the new jobs growth rate:Between 2016 and 2026, the following six occupational groups are projected to provide over 50% of the new jobs growth rate:
The above occupations are expected to grow by nearly 2.7 million jobs over this ten-year timeframe.
This first table of information includes the ten fastest growing occupations in terms of numbers of jobs created.
|Occupation||Thousands Of Jobs|
|Personal care aides||777.6|
|Combined food preparation and serving workers, including fast food||579.9|
|Home health aides||431.2|
|Software developers, applications||255.4|
|Janitors and cleaners, except maids and housekeeping cleaners||236.5|
|General and operations managers||205.2|
|Laborers and freight, stock, and material movers, hand||199.7|
|Waiters and waitresses||182.5|
As the above table illustrates, the vast majority of new jobs will be in the personal care and home health aide occupations. While the above table shows how many new jobs will be created from 2016 through 2026, there's another way to look at these projections. The table below provides insights into the occupations that will experience the largest number of job openings. This includes both the growth in the number of new jobs, plus the openings created when an existing job is in need of a replacement due to employee turnover.
|Occupation||Thousands of Openings|
|Combined food preparation and serving workers, including fast food||736.0|
|Waiters and waitresses||522.7|
|Personal care aides||414.3|
|Laborers and freight, stock, and material movers, hand||388.4|
|Customer service representatives||373.5|
|Office clerks, general||356.2|
|Janitors and cleaners, except maids and housekeeping cleaners||344.1|
|Stock clerks and order fillers||269.2|
|Secretaries and administrative assistants, except legal, medical, and executive||244.3|
A third way to look at this employment information has to do with growth rates. Instead of defining a hot job as those positions with the largest number of openings, here it's defined as the percentage increase in the need for a particular job type. For example, by 2026, the data tells us there will be 108% more insulation workers than there were in 2016.
|Occupation||Increase over 10 Years|
|Solar photovoltaic installers||104.9%|
|Wind turbine service technicians||96.3%|
|Home health aides||47.3%|
|Personal care aides||38.6%|
|Physical therapist assistants||31.0%|
|Software developers, applications||30.7%|
It's also important to understand the training or education required for the above occupations. Of the 11.1 million jobs that will be created from 2016 through 2026, 35.6% of them only require short-term on-the-job training. This is because many of these positions include cashier, waiter / waitress, and retail jobs.
|Short-term on-the-job training||35.62%|
|Moderate-term on-the-job training||7.53%|
|Long-term on-the-job training||2.63%|
Finally, as the table below demonstrates, over 35% of jobs only require a high school diploma. As would be expected, jobs that do not require a high school diploma are the lowest paying jobs, while those requiring a doctoral degree pay nearly $100,000 per year.
|Education||New Jobs||Mean Salary|
|Doctoral or professional degree||4.83%||$95,158|
|High school diploma or equivalent||27.26%||$40,635|
|No formal educational credential||20.63%||$29,823|
|Postsecondary nondegree award||9.24%||$44,958|
|Some college, no degree||1.41%||$37,573|
To gain a better understanding of how much any of the above mentioned jobs are worth; our article on the topic of high paying jobs contains salary information for hundreds of job types.
About the Author - Employment Projections: 2016 to 2026