Find the careers of the future offering the best prospects

Jan 19, 2015

Navigating the world of careers and deciding what career might both suit you best and offer the best prospects can be bewildering acknowledges Sir Charlie Maynard, chairman of the John Lewis Partnership.

So a guide that helps young people identify the best jobs and to map careers of the future is certainly welcome.

The new report, Careers of the Future, published in December 2014 by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES), lists careers that labour market analysts believe offer some of the best opportunities for tomorrow’s job seekers. The jobs have been analysed according to pay, business need and predicted job opportunities to produce a shortlist across ten sectors.

Sir Charlie, who is also chair of UKCES, writes the forward to the new report which introduces 40 jobs across both new and emerging industries that offer good prospects for those entering the workforce tomorrow.

As the government’s skills minister Nick Boles said: ‘This insight into the jobs of the future will be an important tool in helping young people make more informed decisions about their career.’

Careers of the future that offer the best prospects

The report shows how IT and other current trends are opening up new jobs or stabilising traditional ones. For example, mechanical engineering is key to the UK economy, and there is plenty of opportunity in this area due to demands for better forms of green energy and zero emission engines. Jobs are being created due to growing interest in areas such mechatronics – a design process that combines mechanical, electronic and other engineering disciplines, with applications in fields such as robotics. With the UK’s commitment to ensure British engineers remain at the forefront of design, jobs such as mechanical engineering is set as a job of the future. Similarly, trends that are driving reforms in education are opening up new opportunities for secondary school teachers and nursery teachers.

In the post recession business market consumer confidence is up, spending is up and the emphasis is on growth. The report emphasises that ‘strong job growth is expected’ when it comes to roles in sales and business with a ‘wealth of opportunities, with lucrative rewards on offer to the best performers’. Sales and business development spans all sectors, from IT to manufacturing, and automotive to construction, and is one of the biggest occupations in employment terms.

Careers of the future in business and finance include

  • Sales accounts and business development managers
  • Business and financial project managers
  • Finance and investment analysts and advisers
  • Chartered and certified accountants
  • Management consultants and business analysts

What’s also interesting about the report is that it identifies traditional roles like farmer and train driver as jobs of the future offering good prospects. The report says technology is changing such roles, moving them a world away from what they once were.

Missing: The central role of IT in all careers

The report points to information technology as the driving force behind the changes in traditional jobs and the creation of new jobs. It does not highlight the fact the IT are now needed in every sector, including that of train driver or farmer. Digital technology is playing an increasing role in everything we do from purchasing stock to marketing and so the possession of digital skills is a must in every sector of employment.

Sir Charlie says it is important that those at the start of their career have accurate information about what a job entails and the skills needed to do it. The guide provides a starting point for anyone looking for more information on what careers of tomorrow may have in store and so will be useful when it comes to planning your university exit strategy.

View a copy of the report here: Careers of the Future

Here are 12 careers highlighted from a range of sectors featured in the report, all offering good prospects to tomorrow’s job seekers:

  • Care workers
  • Construction project managers
  • Electricians
  • Farmers
  • IT business analysts
  • Mechanical engineers
  • Nurses
  • Police officers
  • Programmers and software developers
  • Sales account managers and business development managers
  • Secondary school teachers
  • Train and tram drivers

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