If you choose to pursue a career in the skilled trades, here’s what you should know about your job security.
Careers in skilled trades (occupations like electricians, carpenters, mechanics, medical technicians, cosmetologists, and the list goes on and on) are some of the most in-demand positions in the United States. Every month for the past several years, there have been hundreds of thousands of openings in skilled trade positions every month. The demand for workers who know a skilled trade is projected to increase faster than the national average (by a long shot!) over the next 10 years.
Why are there so many job openings?
Careers that require a skilled trade are both very difficult to automate (in the same way that Uber is trying to create driverless cars, and grocery stores utilize electronic cashier systems) and very difficult to outsource (like hiring software developers in India). This creates a ton of job openings because as the population and economy continue to grow, there is higher and higher demand for workers with a specialized skill.
Why will the demand continue to be strong?
The average age of someone working in skilled trade careers today is around 55. Compare that versus the average age of all working Americans, which is 44. This means that many of those who are working in skilled trades careers are closer to retirement and will be exiting the workforce. This means that not only is there incredible demand for people working the skilled trades today, but it means there will be a huge demand for skilled trade workers for decades into the future!
What is a skilled trade?
A skilled trade profession can generally be defined as any occupation that requires a particular skill set, knowledge, or ability. It is usually a hands-on job, but can vary depending on which industry you choose to work in. In some capacity, every industry in the world is dependent on a skilled trades worker at some point!
What are examples of skilled trade jobs?
Careers in skilled trades span every industry in the world. They can generally be categorized into the following buckets:
- Construction Trades (Occupations like electricians, welders, carpenters, plumbers, and heavy machine operators)
- Medical & Veterinary Trades (Phlebotomists, MedTechs, Vet Techs, and a variety of Medical Assistants)
- Service Focused Trades (Estheticians, Hairstylists & Barbers, Manicurists, and Chefs)
How can I get started?
There are many pathways to get started in a skilled trades career. An incredible benefit of starting in the world of skilled trades is that you can very often actually get paid while you are learning the trade (as an apprentice) instead of having to pay for school (like a university or community college). You can browse all of the different occupations in the world of skilled trades by clicking here and also view what it takes to get started!