Today's Career Landscape

The work landscape has changed by leaps and bounds since we were young.

With remote and work-from-home options, social media and major technology innovations, it’s a whole new world with many career opportunities that didn’t even exist when we started working.

Most young people have been exposed to technology from the time they could talk, and many of today’s highest-paying roles weren’t even in existence just 15 years ago. In just over a decade, advances like smartphones, streaming TV and on-demand services like Uber have created thousands of job options for our kids that just weren’t there before. According to Entefy, a leading AI software company, here are 15 careers that barely existed just 15 years ago:

  • Mobile app developer: The iPhone arrived in 2007, followed soon after by Android devices. And just 10 years later, half of the world’s adults had a smartphone. Many tasks that were once done sitting in front of a desktop and keyboard are now more commonly done on a mobile device, everything from banking to communication to shopping. So naturally there was an explosion in the number of mobile app developers.

  • Social media manager: These days, businesses large and small have personnel dedicated to managing a company’s social media presence. Social media is used for traditional marketing as well as customer service. Social media managers (and related jobs) evolved from earlier digital marketing roles to encompass the specific skills needed to help a brand stand out on today’s social media channels.

  • Ride-sharing driver: Once upon a time, urbanites stood on street corners with arms raised, hoping to attract a passing taxicab. Today, of course, ride hailing is done with a few taps of an app, and yesterday’s taxi driver is giving way to today’s gig-economy driver. Uber, the leading ride-sharing company, was founded in 2009 and quickly grew to become the world’s most valuable startup. One interesting dynamic about app-enabled ride sharing is that it has created driving jobs that will prove to be only temporary. Companies are investing heavily in self-driving cars and have their sights set on flying cars as well.

  • Self-driving car engineer: While driverless cars are poised to make a major dent in transportation, they are also beginning to create new types of jobs. Driverless cars can’t yet develop or repair themselves, so engineers, mechanics and software developers are in-demand jobs today and should remain so into the foreseeable future.

  • Cloud computing specialist: You don’t have to go back much more than 10 years or so for the statement “I work in the cloud” to sound downright crazy. While the concept of distributed software services had been around for some time, cloud computing really took off after 2006. Today, more than half of US businesses use cloud services of one form or another.

  • Big Data analyst and data scientist. Digital data management by IT professionals isn’t new, but beginning in the mid-2000s the concept of Big Data took off as the management and productive use of data entered a new phase. These days, the path out from under all the data piling up every second lies with the skills of Big Data analysts and data scientists. With data volumes growing 40 percent per year, there is tremendous demand for specialists who can analyze, process and make useable all this information.

  • Sustainability manager: Sustainability was once a niche concept, reserved for progressive companies focused on finding productive uses of human and natural resources. But in the same way that electric cars have gone mainstream in recent years, so too has sustainability. Professionals who develop corporate sustainability programs are in demand, working on projects like identifying “green” cost-saving opportunities and federal, state and local tax rebates.

  • Vloggers: The term weblog evolved into the more familiar blog and blogger in the late 1990s. You would be forgiven for not recognizing the term vlogger, a more recent term that combines video with blogger. With the rise of video-sharing platforms like YouTube and Vimeo, vlogging has become big business, with top YouTube stars earning millions of dollars through advertising, social media and sponsorship deals.
  • Commercial drone operators: Even though government regulations covering unmanned aerial vehicles—commonly called drones—are just now being written, demand for drone pilots is skyrocketing. Commercial use of drones, which were once reserved for military use, is expanding to include everything from deliveries by UPS and Amazon to aerial photography and videography of commercial real estate sites.

  • Digital content marketers: The marketing industry is one of many that has seen phenomenal changes over the last decade, and it continues to develop constantly. Go back 15 years or so and marketing budgets were still focused on traditional advertising channels like radio and TV and print brochures. Beginning with email marketing, marketing departments evolved quickly to encompass sophisticated data-driven digital campaigns covering websites, social media and digital ads. Driving much of this transformation was the rise of “content marketing,” the strategy of using high-value content like articles and explainer videos to market without really marketing.

  • Search engine optimization (SEO) specialist: Before Google came along and gave the world near-instant search of the internet, companies like Yahoo! thrived by providing directories that categorized websites. But as the number of websites exploded, a marketing problem emerged: How does my business get found among all the noise? “Getting found” became the domain of search engine optimization, the art and science of selecting keywords to support business objectives. Once limited to a handful of tips and hacks, SEO today is a complex and ever-changing field, and its professionals are in demand at businesses large and small.

  • Market research data miner: Businesses are awash in data. Making sense of the data involves turning all the ones and zeros into actionable insights. The role of market researchers has evolved in lockstep with the Big Data revolution. Today these prophets of market trends possess the highly technical specialty skill of finding meaning in reams of marketing and customer data.

  • Elder-care services coordinator: Two powerful trends are driving the demand for jobs in the elder-care space: the aging US population and the increasing complexity of the healthcare system. Demand by older Americans for in-home healthcare services is growing, but because so much of the healthcare systems is DIY, figuring out how to access those services can be complicated. Elder-care services coordinators are specialists who understand the healthcare needs of elderly patients and the intricacies of the services available to them.

  • Medical biller and coder: Here’s another newly emerged role driven by changes to technology. The US healthcare system is largely structured around fixed rates that doctors receive as reimbursement for services. A regular office visit is reimbursed at one rate, treating a broken ankle at another. Commonly employed at doctors’ offices, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, medical billers and coders provide the expertise that connects doctors’ services to insurance and governmental reimbursement.

  • Genetic counselor: Advances in genetics are taking place at a breathtaking pace, as seen by the successful uses of the Crispr-cas9 gene-editing technology. As genetic technologies move out of labs and into the mainstream, a new job title has emerged as well: genetic counselor. Genetic counselors help patients interpret the results of genetic tests to aid in the prevention and management of illness. As medical capabilities around genetic testing improves, and as innovative technologies like genetic modification of embryos mature, these counselors will be increasingly in demand at healthcare facilities the world over.

Fort Wayne, the region’s hub and Indiana’s second-largest city, consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in the U.S. and boasts some of the nation’s lowest cost of living.

No matter what field your child is interested in pursuing, one thing is for sure—it will continue to change as technology advances even more. 

There are plenty of opportunities, as well as other regional industries that are also adapting to the changing work landscape, that fit these new careers right here in northeastern Indiana. Let us help you to expose your child to all the new career options out there and find a future they can make their own, right here in northeast Indiana.

Click here to explore emerging career options.