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If you’re looking for a job or career change, there are 10 fields that will be hungry to hire, and older workers could be great fits for many of these openings, according to a report from AARP and IMPAQ International.
Many employers are “having trouble filling vacancies with qualified, well-trained workers,” says the report, which was published in 2017. That could translate into opportunities for workers over age 50. People in this group overall have relatively low levels of unemployment, but they are also more likely to face longer periods of unemployment after they lose a job. For employers and older job seekers, finding the right match could really be just a matter of looking in the right place, according to the report.
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The other key for older job seekers, the report states, is to look at occupations that make use of the skills they have already developed during their careers. “Among older workers making career changes, those who are able to make use of existing skills in their new job tend to be more successful.”
Here are the 10 occupations, in declining order, expected to have the largest labor shortages over the next few years. Clicking on the “Find jobs” link will take you to current postings for those occupations on the AARP Job Board.
1. Health Diagnosing and Treating Practitioners
Pharmacists, exercise physiologists, dietitians and nutritionists, therapists, podiatrists, optometrists, surgeons, orthodontists, dentists, and chiropractors are among the jobs in this group. Many of these positions require extensive training and advanced degrees. As a result, many of the job openings are most likely to be filled by workers already in these fields, according to the AARP/IMPAQ report.
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2. Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing
Jobs in this category include sales representative, sales executive, sales consultant, sales agent, direct salesperson and technical sales representative. Nearly 10 percent of workers 50-plus are already working in this or a similar job. Demand for employees in these fields is expected to be particularly high in Colorado, Kansas and Maryland. Generally, these positions require at least two years of secondary education in the academic area of the product.
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3. Computer Occupations
These occupations include computer and information research scientists, computer system analysts, programmers, information security analysts, web and software developers, and computer user support specialists. Entry requirements vary from a vocational degree with on-the-job training to an advanced degree. This is one of the fields, the report says, that many workers over 50 may require additional training to work in.
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