In a tough job market, it pays to be strategic, and to look for positions in industries with the best opportunities for career growth and upward mobility. ITCareerFinder examined tech job growth rates from the leading unbiased employment sources, including the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, to identify the fastest growing IT careers for 2012 and beyond.
Here are the top five fastest growing IT career paths:
Web DeveloperEmployment for web developers is expected to increase by 53%from 2008 to 2018, placing it among the fastest growing of all occupations. More web developers will be needed to accommodate the increasing amount of data sent over the Internet and the growing number of Internet users. Each year, more businesses bring their offerings to the World Wide Web; as the number of products and services online grows, web developers will continue to see increased employment opportunities. Developers with Web 2.0 programming skills will be in especially high demand, as businesses compete to engage consumers and gain competitive advantage in the fast growing world of social media and peer-to-peer networking.
Mobile Application DeveloperEmployment for mobile application developers and software engineers is expected to increase by at least 32%from 2008 to 2018. Smart phones and tablets are revolutionizing the way we communicate, do business, and access news & entertainment; as mobile devices continue to become increasingly capable and accessible, the demand for new and innovative applications – and talented mobile developers to create them – will continue to rise. Mobile application development is home to one of the largest skills gaps in the U.S. job market, meaning there are currently more mobile development job openings than skilled developers to fill them.
Video Game DesignerEmployment for video game designers and software publishers is expected to increase by 30%from 2008 to 2018, almost 3 times as fast as the 11 percent job growth projected for all industries combined. The multi-billion dollar gaming industry has more than tripled in size over the last decade with no signs of abating. Beyond the growing market for video games on PCs and the major consoles – Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo Wii – the increased sophistication and popularity of emerging handheld & wireless technologies has opened up a new world of employment opportunities for video game designers, developers, and publishers. Game designers with expertise in mobile development & deployment will be particularly in-demand as smartphones and tablets, such as Apple’s iPhone & iPad, continue to change the way video games are accessed and played.
Network AdministratorEmployment for network administrators is expected to increase by 23%from 2008 to 2018, twice as fast as the 11% average for all occupations. In challenging economic times, organizations retain and/or hire network and systems administrators to maximize existing network and communications technologies in order to increase efficiency and reduce costs. In periods of economic recovery and expansion, firms invest in new technologies – for instance, the adoption of mobile devices into the corporate infrastructure – which translates to increased demand for systems and network administrators to integrate, secure and utilize these new technologies. This consistent demand for network administrators, independent of economic conditions, leads many employment experts to dub network administration a "recession proof career."
Health Information TechnicianEmployment for health information technicians is expected to increase by at least 20% from 2008 to 2018, much faster than the average for all occupations. Flush with federal funds and facing aggressive regulatory deadlines to implement new electronic health record (EHR) systems, medical practices will hire a record-number of health information technicians over the next five years. Widespread use of electronic health records will lead to increased demand for technicians who are trained and certified in the duties and responsibilities associated with electronic data management. Also, as the population continues to age, specialized health information technicians, such as Cancer Registrars, will experience increased job growth as the incidence of disease rises in the aging population. The proper accredited training and certification is critical to success when entering the healthcare IT job market – learn more about the importance of accredited healthcare IT training.
Sources: U.S. Dept. of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov); O-Net Online (onetonline.org); Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (himss.org); CNN Money (money.cnn.com)
Read deep dive job descriptions of the most sought-after IT career paths.
Find the author of this blog on Google+ for a first look at similar stories.