5 Careers Set to Take Off in 2017

2017 is shaping up to be alright, economically speaking. According to Forbes, the economic forecast for the next two years entails a “mild rebound” from the anemic growth we’ve seen for the past several years. (Another Forbes piece says next year will be, simply, “better than 2016.”)

It’s fair to bet that the rising tide won’t lift all boats though. Some besieged industries will no doubt continue to contract. Others will flat line. And some will grow — a few, perhaps, at truly impressive rates.

Whether you’re entering the job market for the first time or considering a career change after years of toil in a particular field, it behooves you to choose your next move wisely. The right call can add tens of thousands of dollars (and years of priceless security) to your financial and personal bottom line. The wrong call…well, it never hurts to have the same conversation twice.

In 2017, the smart money is on these six careers taking off — or, in some cases, flying even higher than they already were.


  1. Social Media Manager

The machines are coming for this one, but not yet. As the advertising industry’s center of gravity goes social and the younger set gets more comfortable with their digital toys, even the most staid brands won’t be able to resist the tide. Hey, widget makers need Twitter accounts too.


  1. Accountant

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the “accountants and auditors” field is heating up. Between 2014 and 2024, it’s projected to grow some 11%, well ahead of the overall economic growth pace. Per the Bureau, that’s down to “[g]globalization, a growing overall economy, and an increasingly complex tax and regulatory environment.”

Those closer to the action agree with that assessment. “The global economy moves at disorienting speed,” says Fergus Cleaver, shareholder in Auckland-based Cleaver Partners. “Multinational enterprises — including any company that sells products or services across national borders — simply can’t afford not to employ or retain accounting professionals.”


  1. Systems Analyst

This is a perennial favorite — one of the few high-growth gigs your mom or dad could have held. The tools of the job keep changing, even if the job description doesn’t.

  1. Web Architect

Teach a man to fish — or surf. Architects sit at the top of the web development totem pole; they’re the ultimate arbiters of process and product. And they’re paid well, too: according to Glassdoor’s crowdsourced figures, the average web architect earns just shy of $100,000 per year.


  1. Healthcare Administrator

The healthcare industry faces more uncertainty than ever, but the people who keep its trains (and, er, X-ray machines) running on time have little to worry about. As hospitals and health systems look for ways to cut costs in an increasingly competitive milieu, administrators — hospital execs, practice managers, medical faculty — are sure to be in high demand.

Up for a Change? Better Be

People are changing careers faster than ever these days. CNN Money posted a thoroughly depressing piece last year about the pace of (career) change among the younger set: the average 32 year old has already changed jobs four times. Many young people effortlessly hop between economic sectors, taking gigs that bear little resemblance to the last and learning new skills with all the friction of a bowler on ice.

It’s probably a good thing that young workers are so pliable because the economy is changing fast too. The graduation-to-retirement job has just about gone the way of the dodo, and new technologies are rapidly replacing workers whose jobs once seemed secure. In other words, being up for a change is no longer the mark of an exceptionally adaptable employee. It’s table stakes in the new economic reality.

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