What Jobs Will Be Stronger Post-Covid?
Everyone’s talking about how Covid-19 will change the working world forever—but few are giving specifics. It’s as if everyone is giving a society-wide shrug. At best, you may encounter the vague guess that more people will work from home in the future. That’s not especially helpful to those currently sitting at home, not working…or those who fear their current job is dangling by a thread.
How do you cope with this level of uncertainty? How do you prepare for a job market that’s sure to be different, but in no way anyone can describe it? Sure, you can up your skills and polish your resume, but what sort of skills will be in demand? What positions are worth polishing that resume for?
However, there are already clear indications that certain fields will thrive post-Covid, while others might shrink and collapse. The bad news is, when you start crunching the numbers, a lot of jobs just aren’t going to return.
These are the lesson businesses have learned during Covid:
- A distributed workforce is doable. This is the good news. It means you’ll have a wider field to hunt from after the pandemic because you won’t be limited to jobs in your immediate location. It’s also fantastic for anyone who is, or who wants to enter, the jobs that are required to support a distributed workforce.
- Let’s do EVERYTHING online! Even businesses that were almost purely brick-and-mortar, like gyms, may pivot to incorporating online models, such as offering remote fitness coaching.
- Resiliency is key. Shorter supply chains, local sourcing, and work teams that can think on their feet will all be in demand post-Covid.
- Automate everything. This is great news if you’re in AI, robotics, machine learning, or anything related. It’s less great if you’re not—because it means fewer jobs all around.
- Streamline, streamline, streamline. As we stare down the barrel of a major recession—or even a depression—even big companies will be thinking small. Many of the jobs that were lost in the lockdown just…will never come back. That’s why it’s so important to look ahead, and anticipate who will be hiring.
As you can see, the news is fairly grim for many professions. In particular, leisure and hospitality—which lost 7.7 million jobs in April—can’t be expected to bounce back quickly (if ever).
However, certain sectors are bound to thrive as businesses move forward with all these radical adjustments. The time to start preparing for these industries is now, so that as coronavirus dies down, your job prospects can continue to rise. Let’s discuss exactly what these jobs are.
All Things Digital
The more companies take their processes, their marketing, and even their products online, the more they’ll need help to do so.
- IT careers– software developers, database administrators, computer systems analysts, etc. This one is fairly obvious: companies that go online will need new programs and support. It helps that many in these fields already work remotely, or work for companies who adapted easily to remote work.
- Cybersecurity. Although this can fall in the general category of IT, it has been especially highlighted as a potential area of growth. Companies going online will be particularly concerned about securing their, their customer’s, data.
- Platforms for a distributed workforce. Guess who’s hiring right now — Asana and Zoom! Although there was already a plethora of competition in this category, can expect to see an even greater boom in these platforms, and also for those who specialize in using them. Which leads us to…
- Project managers. Distributed workforces come with their own unique issues. Project managers who have experience with the various platforms and who are accustomed to dealing with teams working from home will have a distinct advantage post-Covid.
- HR talent. As mentioned above, distributed workforces can be quite convenient, but they bring their own problems. For example, what’s required for a company based in Connecticut to hire someone in Wyoming? HR experts who are accustomed to these sort of challenges will be in demand.
- E-learning. Online teaching has surged—and not just because schools were closed. One benefit of quarantine was that it encouraged those stuck at home to develop new hobbies and interests, either through formal e-learning courses or by watching dedicated Youtube channels. Companies may be taking advantage of this movement by promoting courses as well as their products; alternately, if you possess a teachable skill, now might be a good time to invest in developing and marketing your own course.
- Marketing. The more time people spend online, the more companies will market online. In particular, marketers with their own media or creative teams are already sought after.
- E-commerce specialists. If you’re selling online, it’s sure handy to know how! If you know something about e-commerce, now is your time to shine as a consultant for those less experienced.
- Content. As with marketing and e-learning, the more time people spend online, the more content those websites require. Writers, photographers, videographers, and more can already find well-paying work creating high-quality for websites, and the market is likely to increase yet further.
All Things ‘Resilience’
By most accounts, lean times are ahead, and businesses are looking to tighten their belts. They’re also looking to eliminate human positions whenever possible—after all, AI can’t call in sick. If you have experience in the following fields, you can expect substantial opportunities post-Covid.
- Business strategy consultants. Even post-Covid, it will not be a time for “business as normal.” Helping companies discover their strategy will be a lucrative option going forward.
- Supply chain process design/optimization. We may be seeing a slowdown in globalization; companies are now seeing the downside of outsourcing critical manufacturing to distant countries. How much will be rerouted and localized is still up in the air, but since ‘resiliency’ is now the name of the game (as opposed to cost-cutting), supply chains are guaranteed to look quite different in future.
- 3D printing. If your work involves 3D printing, you’re in luck! 3D printing might be the most ‘resilient’ method of production—or at least the closest to home—and I expect companies who can set up their own 3D printers will do so, quickly.
- AI. Post-pandemic, the paradigm has shifted: companies now believe that the fewer human beings are involved, the better off they are. Working in computer engineering or software development will be good job security. Any tasks that can be shifted toward AI likely will be, soon.
All Things Deliverable
We’ve all gotten used to delivery; are we going back to the bad ol’ days of driving to the store? CEOs certainly don’t think so! Let’s call the post-Covid era the Golden Age of Delivery. That means opportunities at every level for everyone involved in a delivery business, or anything tangentially related to one.
- Actual deliverers. Don’t expect this to go away yet! Drone delivery services might be in development, but they can’t replace good ol’ human power yet. The apps and businesses that employ deliverers are here to stay.
- Apps/businesses that deliver. Speaking of which—if you’re wondering what business to apply to, see if it does delivery. A restaurant that delivers is likely to enjoy greater business post-Covid than one that doesn’t.
- Drone delivery! All right, everyone knows this technology is coming, so if you’re a drone expert…you know what to do.
There’s no point in sugar-coating it: the economy will not return to “normal” post-Covid.
Some industries, such as non-essential retail and hospitality, have already lost major corporations to bankruptcy. Others, foreseeing uncertain economic times ahead, will opt to remain small and agile—which means hiring fewer workers.
That’s why it’s important to start pivoting now. If you’re already fortunate enough to work in one of these fields, count yourself lucky and don’t stop up-skilling—competition will be fierce. If you don’t, explore ways to angle into these industries using your current skills. Going back to school may not be a good financial option right now, but there are careers that do not require a degree and other ways to begin exploring careers that are hot: freelancing, networking, starting your own company, etc. All of the jobs listed above demonstrate significant growth potential, but as mentioned above, you’re going to face a lot of competition. If you’re not sure what career fits you best based on your personality, consider taking a career test to find the careers that fit you. Best to get started now. Good luck!