As American workers become increasingly anxious about the economy and job security. Certain industries are particularly vulnerable during recessions, including retail, manufacturing, the financial sector and technology. However, there are always some areas that seem to be recession resistant. These often change from recession to recession, based on global, economic and societal trends at the time of the slowdown.
There are times when education systems are significantly impacted by recessions as state coffers shrink. However, educators may survive this slowdown, as a growing number of retirements, high turnover and increasing enrollment make it necessary to replace exiting teachers. Health care is another industry that is replacing retiring workers and adding workers to meet the growing demand for health services among aging baby boomers – demand that will exist regardless of the economy’s health.
Many job seekers make the mistake of attempting a career change during downturns. This can be a career-crippling move, not to mention a financially disastrous one. It is much better to focus on transferring your current occupations skills to industries that remain healthy.
Do not make the mistake of thinking that only those with industry-specific skills will be in demand. Hospitals not only need nurses and physical therapists, they need administrators and information technology workers. Firms specializing in information security need accountants and marketing professionals in addition to computer programmers. There should be a wide variety of opportunities in the industries that remain strong through the slowdown.
Security: Unfortunately the need for security is not diminishing, whether it’s the U.S. protecting its borders and ports or a company protecting its valuable information. A 2007 report by the Partnership for Public Service estimated that the government would need to fill 83,000 jobs at the Defense and Homeland Security departments over the next two years. Another 22,000 transportation security officers will also be needed. Even in Georgia – a state not often associated with technology – there is demand for more than 58,000 IT security workers.
Environmental sector: More companies are going “green” as concerns about global warming expand globally. There will be high demand for engineers and scientists to develop green technologies. There will also be a need for consultants, program managers, attorneys and others to help companies become more eco-friendly. According to a United Nations report, the environmental industry was responsible for creating 5.3 million jobs in 2005.
Health care: Almost half the 30 fastest growing occupations are concentrated in health services — including medical assistants, physical therapists, physician assistants, home health aides, and medical records and health information technicians — according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. According to the California Jobs Journal, employers in the state are trying to lure nurses with $7,500 signing bonuses for hard-to-fill positions and $3,500 for traditional posts. Additionally, employers are providing $3,000 annually to support ongoing education, relocation reimbursement, time off to pursue professional interests, overtime pay and an opportunity to work 12-hour shifts, with four days off every week.
Education: According to projections by the National Center for Education Statistics, an additional 2.8 million new teachers will need to join the existing 3.2 million
teachers over the next eight years due to retirements, higher enrollment and teacher turnover. Teachers will not be the only ones in demand. There will be a need for administrators, independent consultants and sales executives to supply text books and other learning materials.