Report Identifies the Great Jobs of 2017

Posted By Terri Williams on December 22, 2016 at 9:16 am
Report Identifies the Great Jobs of 2017

There are jobs, and then there are good jobs, and then there are great jobs. Gauging job satisfaction levels may be akin to trying to hit a moving target. A recent survey of the most and least satisfying degree choices found that the most satisfying degree choices often lead to the jobs with the lowest prospects, and vice versa.

However, classifying great jobs takes a more scientific approach, and CareerBuilder and Emsu recently released a report listing the best jobs of 2017. The rankings are based on three factors: growth rate, critical mass of jobs, and wages. The occupations are grouped into 5 key categories along with specific job titles.

Following are selected excerpts on the key categories of great jobs:

Information technology

2012-2016 Increase in Jobs: 472,104 or 12%

Average Hourly Earnings: $40.82

Top Job Titles:

  • Data Scientist
  • User Interface/Front End Development
  • Product Manager
  • Mobile Software Engineer
  • Information Security Manager

Business and financial operations

2012-2016 Increase in Jobs: 585,265 or 8%

Average Hourly Earnings: $35.09

Top Job Titles:

  • Operations Manager
  • Business Process Analyst
  • Product Development Specialist
  • Financial Analyst
  • Office Manager

Health care

2012-2016 Increase in Jobs: 606,887 or 8%

Average Hourly Earnings: $37.77

Top Job Titles:

  • Family Practitioner
  • Medical Director
  • ICU Nurse
  • Cardiologist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Rehabilitation Nurse



2012-2016 Increase in Jobs: 914,066 or 6%

Average Hourly Earnings: $19.06

Top Job Titles:

  • Account Executive
  • Account Manager
  • Business Development Manager
  • Client Services Coordinator

Skill trades

2012-2016 Increase in Jobs: 1,017,539 or 8%

Average Hourly Earnings: $21.38

Top Job Titles:

  • Electrician
  • Plumber
  • HVAC Technician

Behind the numbers on the great jobs

There’s a strong link between supply, demand, and wages. So what’s fueling demand for these great job categories? Jessica Holbrook Hernandez, president/CEO of Great Resumes Fast, tells GoodCall she is not surprised that the best jobs would fall into these particular categories. “Recruiters in each of these fields have reported that the biggest challenge they face in hiring right now is finding qualified candidates,” Hernandez says.

And since demand is so great, she explains that even new graduates who might not have the desired amount of experience will find that many companies are willing to relax their requirements.

Information technology has the highest percentage increase in jobs and the highest average hourly wages. While the sector as a whole has grown by 12%, the U.S. Department of Labor expects certain IT occupations to grow by much more through 2024. In fact, Karen Panetta, professor of electrical and computer engineering and associate dean for graduate education at Tufts University, tells GoodCall that IT professionals are needed in several areas.

For example, Panetta says the country needs cybersecurity experts who can “break things,” or “hack for good.” In other words, Panetta says, “They need to anticipate illegal access and create the safeguards to prevent others from breaking into our private data.”

On the other hand, Panetta says the need for data scientists extends beyond individuals who are good at statistics to include those with the ability to employ psychology and linguistics to learn various patterns of human behavior.

Understanding how to build an appealing user-interface is another highly sought after trait, as is the ability to create applications that can run effectively and efficiently on mobile devices. “And product managers need to balance the needs of the customer and ensure the technology meets those needs, while also sticking to the budget to generate regular profits.”

The sales category might not have been a predictable selection, but according to David Perry, an executive recruiter and the author of Hiring Greatness: How to Recruit Your Dream Team and Crush the Competition and Executive Recruiting for Dummies, the fact that it might not have been predicted is a major problem.

Perry tells GoodCall that salesmanship is the essence of excellent communication skills, and when employees cannot communicate the value of a company’s product or service, they must compete based on price. “The biggest downfall of the American education system is in NOT teaching students how to sell themselves or their ideas,” Perry says, and he believes that the country as a whole fails to be competitive on a global level.

Terri Williams
Terri Williams graduated with a B.A. in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Her education, career, and business articles have been featured on Yahoo! Education, U.S. News & World Report, The Houston Chronicle, and in the print edition of USA Today Special Edition. Terri is also a contributing author to "A Practical Guide to Digital Journalism Ethics," a book published by the Center for Digital Ethics and Policy at Loyola University Chicago.

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