What Economists Think the Jobs Market Will Be Like in 2030

Although most economists didn't imagine the economic devastation brought upon the world by the COVID-19 pandemic, public health professionals weren't at all surprised about the wide-ranging effects of its worldwide spread. As vaccine distribution ramps up and the economy slowly recovers, economists are thinking about what the jobs market in the United States will look like in 2030. While it's nine years away, they can use demographics and consumer preferences to make some relatively safe predictions about which jobs are most likely to increase in demand and which ones are likely to decrease or even disappear. On January 8, economists with the Bureau of Labor Statistics released some updated guidance on which jobs will have the most growth and highest demand in 2030.

Care for the Elderly

Taking care of the aging American population will be a major source of new jobs in 2030. The proliferation of chronic diseases will mean that more elderly people aren't able to care for themselves. There will be an increase in demand for both in-home care as well as nurses' aides for providing care in assisted living and long-term care facilities. Healthcare jobs of all types are expected to grow at least 15% by 2030.

Pet Care Services

Dog walkers, groomers, veterinary technicians and veterinarians will also grow in demand by 2030. Part of this is related to the aging of the American population. Older people who have pets may need help caring for them. They will increasingly turn to gig workers, part-time pet care providers and others who can come to their homes to care for their pets.

IT Support and Infrastructure Specialists

The United States is continuing a rapid digital transformation. The COVID-19 pandemic hastened the rollout of 5G services in metropolitan areas. An increasing number of office workers are doing their jobs from home. Students may have new opportunities to keep engaging in remote learning at both the PK-12 level and the college level. People who provide information technology support and who have the skills to build and maintain the information technology infrastructure will find plenty of job opportunities in 2030 and beyond.

Restaurant Jobs Will Increase

The COVID-19 pandemic shuttered many restaurants, and some will stay closed for good. However, as the economy rebounds, new restaurants will open, and existing ones should be able to rehire people or bring on new people. Restaurants may change in how they conduct business. Many of the new restaurant jobs will be related to delivery drivers, people who pack the food into take-out containers, janitorial crews and cooks. The number of host and waitstaff jobs should remain stable and maintain an average rate of growth through 2030.

More Gig Workers

When entire segments of the economy had to shut down during the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, many people turned to gig or freelance work. Uber, Lyft, Door Dash, Shipt and other businesses like these found that they had an increased demand from people who lost their usual transportation or who were not able or willing to go out and do their own grocery shopping or pick up their take-out restaurant order. Gig worker jobs will likely increase. These jobs benefit employers because the employers don't have to pay any benefits to gig workers.

Drop in Manufacturing Jobs

Economists expect the number of manufacturing jobs in the United States to continue to slide on a downward trajectory. Increased automation and efficiency are fueling the trend. Cheaper foreign labor also plays a role.

Fewer Office Support Jobs

There will also be fewer jobs in reception, office and clerical assistants, office managers and data entry clerks. Customer service representative jobs are expected to maintain an average rate of growth of about 4% from 2021 through 2030. For workers to thrive over the coming decade they can expect to need more education and be willing to refresh their skills.

What Workers Need to Do

The jobs with the highest rate of growth and the best level of pay in 2030 will require more and more education and certification. A person who wants to be in healthcare or information technology should start planning now to earn the degree and certification they will need in order to be employable. Anyone who is considering a career change should take stock of their skills and determine if one of the in-demand jobs would be a good fit for them.

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