The pandemic has completely upended the world of work, with the rate of unemployment shooting up as economies go in and out of lockdowns. Even with measures like furlough schemes in place, swathes of people have been left in an uncertain position when it comes to job security. According to the UN, worldwide working hours fell by 14% in the second quarter of 2020 alone, equivalent to a loss of 400 million full-time jobs.
However, despite all of this, there are actually some career paths that are thriving during these uncertain times. So, if COVID-19 has forced an occupation change due to a lack of opportunities in your current sector, here are three jobs you should be considering.
One of the safest bets in the current climate is to learn how to code, as the demand for developers remains high, regardless of the pandemic. “Coding skills are still a job market safe haven,” Romain Paillard, cofounder of coding bootcamp organiser Le Wagon, told Sifted. “I think tech companies in the current crisis are going to focus on improving the quality of their product — that’s going to boost the importance of developers even more.” And this bears out in reality, with two times as many developer vacancies as job seekers in the first quarter of 2020. With so many online courses out there, it’s possible to learn coding within just three months, while you may be able to teach yourself in only six. As such, getting on the developer career ladder can be unexpectedly simple to do, and tends to pay well too.
When deciding which sector to work in after you’ve skilled up, a SAP-based business could be a sensible move. The German cloud software is involved in 77% of all worldwide business transactions, and demand for developers with SAP expertise continues to rise. According to tech careers website Dice, the occupation has the highest projected growth of job listings requiring SAP skills. Consequently, you’re more than likely to find a role within the industry, and there are many specialist SAP recruitment agencies to help jobseekers with their search.
2. Data analyst
Another job seemingly immune to the effects of the coronavirus crisis is data analyst. Research by Burtch Works and International Institute for Analytics has found that 42.1% of data analysts have felt no negative impacts in terms of layoffs or furloughs because of the pandemic. A further 7.6% reported an increase in team hiring during COVID-19, and 67.7% of respondents were positive about their professional situation generally. This boils down to the fact that “45% of organisations are keeping analytics front and centre” of their operations, this being key to navigating the crisis. So, if you’re good with numbers, becoming a data analyst could be a solid career choice.
Although many entry-level vacancies will require a degree in mathematics, statistics, or economics, certain skills will help you land a data analyst role regardless. These include proficiency in popular programming languages like R, Python or C++, the ability to manage and manipulate data, and experience in using software like Excel. There are also many online data analysis courses available that can give you the know-how you need. In terms of the best industry to work in as a data analyst, hackr.io lists market research, financial and sales companies as some where the demand for these skills are highest.
3. Healthcare worker
With the World Health Organization’s State of the World’s Nursing report revealing that there was a global shortage of just under six million nurses even before the pandemic was declared, there were already plenty of opportunities available in the healthcare industry. This situation has naturally worsened over the last twelve months, as healthcare systems buckled under the strain of increased admissions. For example, there are now around 40,000 nursing vacancies in the UK, while a fifth of US hospitals are short on staff, meaning you’ll find more openings than ever in the sector. Working in the healthcare industry also has many broader benefits, including career progression, the chance to do good and help people every single day, and generous pay and benefits, particularly within the private sector.
Although you would need to undergo extensive education and training to take up certain healthcare roles, like a registered nurse, surgeon or pediatrician, many have very few requirements at all. These include jobs such as healthcare assistants, medical assistants and home health aides. As such, you can start a healthcare career pretty quickly, and work your way up in no time.