Earning

8 in-demand jobs for the postcoronavirus economy that can pay as much as $136,000

Twenty/20

Experts generally agree the post-Covid economy will look very different — and, as a result, so could the most in-demand jobs.

As stay-at-home orders are eventually eased, it's likely that industries that necessitate close contact with other people — like retail, restaurants, and travel — will be slower to recover. Other industries are likely to adapt to the new norms of social distancing.

These eight jobs are ones that experts think will be in demand as the country begins to recover from the pandemic, and for which the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects to see growth of at least 5% by 2028. More than half command typical salaries above $70,000, according to the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook.

Jobs in fitness

Fitness trainers and instructors

  • Median salary in 2019: $40,390/year ($19/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 356,900
  • Expected growth by 2028: 13% (45,700 jobs)
  • Required education: High school diploma or equivalent

Faith Popcorn, a futurist and CEO of marketing consulting firm BrainReserve, anticipates that the move to digital, remote services could extend beyond medical care to other one-on-one services, like personal fitness. Consumers have gotten use to exercising at home during quarantine, and it may take some time before they're ready to return to the gym.

Virtual personal training services are likely to be in demand because they can create a one-on-one dynamic that more closely resembles the experience of working face-to-face with a personal trainer than going to the gym, Popcorn says. "It's a little bit different than just taking everything out there and making it virtual."

Jobs within the supply chain, like drivers and logisticians

Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers

  • Median salary in 2019: $45,260/year ($22/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 1,958,800
  • Expected growth by 2028: 5% (99,700 jobs)
  • Required education: Postsecondary nondegree award

Logistician

  • Median salary in 2019: $74,750/year ($34/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 174,900
  • Expected growth by 2028: 5% (8,400 jobs)
  • Required education: Bachelor's degree

Jobs within the supply chains that keep store shelves and warehouses stocked are among those most in-demand during the pandemic, as more people opt to shop online or have purchases delivered rather than head to the store. That's likely to continue for some time, since many consumers will be wary of congregating in public indoor spaces even after lockdowns are lifted.

"As supply chains open up, we anticipate an even greater uptick in demand for truck driver and delivery personnel, and an increase in logistics and some manufacturing," says Vicki Salemi, a career expert for Monster.

As supply chains open up, we anticipate an even greater uptick in demand for truck driver and delivery personnel, and an increase in logistics and some manufacturing.
Vicki Salemi
career expert for Monster

While the median delivery driver earned $32,020 in 2019, nearly $8,000 less than the median for all jobs, truck drivers who handle the long-distance transportation work in the supply chain earn quite a bit more. 

Similarly, warehouse workers earned a median of just over $30,000 last year, and their working conditions were a source of controversy even before the pandemic. However, the logisticians who oversee and manage supply chains, including warehousing and distribution, earn substantially more and tend to work more regular hours, according to BLS.

Jobs in health care

Registered nurses

  • Median salary in 2019: $73,300/year ($35/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 3,059,800
  • Expected growth by 2028: 12% (371,500 jobs)
  • Required education: Bachelor's degree

Physician assistants

  • Median salary in 2019: $112,260/year ($54/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 118,000
  • Expected growth by 2028: 31% (37,000 jobs)
  • Required education: Master's degree

Nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners

  • Median salary in 2019: $115,800/year ($56/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 240,700
  • Expected growth by 2028: 26% (62,000 jobs)
  • Required education: Master's degree

Demand for nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and registered nurses was already on an upswing before coronavirus. That's thanks to the growing popularity of team-based health care, which the National Academy of Medicine defines as "the provision of health services to individuals, families, and/or their communities by at least two health providers who work collaboratively with patients and their caregivers."

That trend has created many jobs for nurse practitioners and physician assistants, who handle routine medical work like patient physicals, and also work with doctors to develop treatment and wellness regimens.

Those roles are likely to be in even more demand as telehealth, and even teledentistry, become more popular, Popcorn tells Grow. The pandemic spurred growth in telemedicine services, which had struggled to catch on for years, and health-care providers will need to staff up if they want to meet that rise in demand.

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Jobs in software

Software developers

  • Median salary in 2018: $105,590/year ($51/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 1,365,500
  • Expected growth by 2028: 21% (284,100 jobs)
  • Required education: Bachelor's degree

Almost 6 in 10 employers would consider changing their work-from-home policies if their workers were able to maintain productivity during the pandemic, according to a March survey from Monster.

To enable workers to do their jobs from home, the software architecture that powers remote digital services needs to be built and maintained. As demand for those services increase, so will jobs in this area. "We may see an uptick in terms of opportunities there," says Salemi.

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Jobs in marketing

Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers

  • Median salary in 2019: $135,900/year ($65/hour)
  • People employed in 2018: 286,800
  • Expected growth by 2028: 8% (21,800 jobs)
  • Required education: Bachelor's degree

Even before the pandemic, the BLS expected marketing jobs to grow at a significant pace over the next decade. These roles have many skills that are transferable between industries, which could be especially useful as some industries thrive and others recover more slowly, Salemi says.

"Let's say they're working in marketing for a hotel, and let's say right now they're furloughed," she says. "Maybe they can consider, 'What marketing skills do I have, how can I position myself for an opportunity in health care, to get marketing within health care?'"

In some cases, she says, "it's just a matter of tweaking their resume."

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