Clark Howard is a nationally syndicated consumer advice expert
We're in an age when there's a real disconnect between skill sets and job openings. That's created a lot of demand in some high-paying fields.
Many of the job openings that are going unfilled require you to go back to school to get more education. Or they may be in fields you have no interest in whatsoever. Having said that, here's a partial list of the kinds of jobs that are available, along with average starting salary.
Top 10 jobs with lots of openings and great starting salaries
- Petroleum engineers start at $85,000
- Senior landmen start at $55,000
- Software engineers start at $60,000
- Electrical engineers start at $60,000
- Mechanical engineers start at $55,000
- Software developers start at $55,000
- Financial analysts start at $50,000
- Communication coordinators start at $35,000
- Marketing coordinators start at $35,000
- Certified public accountants start at $45,000
Continuing education is core to our future as a nation. You've got to morph yourself over time to fit the job market as it changes over time. That's key to our future -- now and tomorrow.
Other top careers in demand might surprise you...
If you're looking for work, yet you don't want to go back to a traditional 4-year college, there's one industry you might want to consider with average pay around $50,000.
It's trucking. Now, I know truckers themselves will tell you theirs isn't a field you should enter into lightly. But if you're unemployed or involuntarily working part-time, you might want to give this a second look.
Trucking companies are so short of workers to drive loads that they're having to turn away business, according to The Wall Street Journal. You may have heard deliveries have been late because of this.
"Just in time delivery" for factories will be the next domino to fall. Factories that run on lean inventories with just hours of parts in stocks have long relied on truck to be their warehouse. But if the current vacancies in trucking continue, those factories are going to need inventory on hand and will find themselves in a real bind.
See a list of 8 high-paying jobs that don't require a college degree.
Maybe trucking is not what you're interested in, but there are opportunities out there and it is possible to find some careers in demand that might be a better fit. One of the best ideas is to move to where the work is...
America's heartland is rolling in jobs and riches
Our nation's heartland is derisively labeled "flyover country" by media types in New York and Los Angeles. But the nation's bread basket is actually overflowing with bread, according to recent data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Per capita income is up roughly 4% over the last 4 years for the 50+ million who live in the heartland. This is a reversal of a longstanding trend where wealth flowed to coastal metropolises like NY and LA.
USA Today reports America's mid-section is doing just fine. For example, North Dakota has high0paying jobs in the booming energy industry going unfilled and there's a severe shortage of housing for workers.
Just to give you an idea, I've heard anecdotally and read reports that jobs at McDonald's start at $17 an hour in some locales in North Dakota. That right there gives you an idea of prevailing wages in other sectors of the economy.
So North Dakota and its heartland neighbors offer an opportunity that so many have overlooked. Sully County in South Dakota was singled out as another place that experience per capita income growth of 70% over the course of the last 4 years.
Of course, living and working in these places comes with a sacrifice involving the severe winters. You've got to be a hardy sort to deal with it, to be sure.
But the idea is we have always been a people to migrate where the opportunity is. A lot of us couldn't move because of housing lock during the recession. Yet today we have fewer people upside down in their homes.
So we are in a time when most of us, if we choose, can be on the move. Now, you may not be of a mind to pick up and relocate. Though if having more opportunity for yourself, your future, or your family is top priority, then being on the move is something you might want to at least consider.