With unprecedented advancements in technology, rapid economic growth, and a growing emphasis on sustainability, it’s anticipated that over 85 per cent of jobs that will exist in 2030 have not yet been invented, according to a report by Dell. The job market is bracing for an upheaval, one that demands today’s students to not just adapt, but to innovate and lead. To equip themselves, students today must understand the career shifts that are expected in the future and the skills they would need to thrive in such an environment.
Careers Options in the Future
Data Scientist: The data explosion in every sector drives the growth of this field, making it integral to harness insights for informed decision-making. As per the Bureau of Labour Statistics, a growth of 28 per cent is forecasted for jobs in this domain by 2026. Essential Skills: Machine learning, data science, Python, R, Apache Spark and Systems analysis
e-Gaming Expert: The entertainment industry’s shift towards digital platforms and the increasing popularity of eSports globally makes this field a promising one. The global eSports market is expected to grow by 21 per cent annually, as per reports. Essential Skills: Gaming expertise, information technology, data analysis, digital media communication and psychology.
Actuary: Actuaries use mathematics, statistics and financial theory to help companies manage uncertain events, particularly for insurance and risk assessment programmes, functions that are becoming increasingly important in today’s complex environment. As per Bureau of Labour Statistics, the demand for actuaries is projected to grow over 20 per cent till 2026.
Essential Skills: Advanced mathematics and statistics, finance, computing and analytical skills.
Environmental Economist: As climate concerns continue to grow, environmental economists are needed to play a crucial role in developing policies and business strategies that balance economic growth with sustainability. The Bureau of Labour Statistics expects employment for environmental economists to grow at 14 per cent till 2026.
Essential Skills: Economics, environmental science and statistical modelling.
Cyber Security Specialist: With cyberattacks becoming more frequent and businesses increasingly data-reliant, cyber security professionals are in high demand. In fact, since 2016, the unemployment rate for cyber security professionals has been 0 per cent. According to Cybersecurity Ventures, there are over 3.5 million open cybersecurity jobs globally.
Essential Skills: IT, programming, network security and risk management
Artificial Intelligence (AI) Specialist
Advances in AI in the past year are disrupting how humans will engage with technology in the future. The integration of AI in industries from healthcare to finance to retail is driving the demand for AI specialists. AI and machine learning are expected to create an additional 12 million in this decade, according to WEF, including 2.3 million jobs in technical roles as per Gartner.
Essential Skills: Machine learning, deep learning, programming and natural language processing
Cyber Lawyer: The surge in cybercrime cases and the increased use of digital platforms necessitate the need for legal professionals specialising in cyber law. India witnessed a 63.5 per cent increase in cybercrime cases in 2019, as per NCRB, indicating a promising future for this field.
Essential Skills: Knowledge of cyber law, IT Act, legal research, litigation and counselling
Blockchain/AR Developer: The growing adoption of blockchain technology across various industries and the rise of Augmented Reality (AR) applications fuel the demand for these professionals. As per Statista, while the AR/VR market is expected to grow by 25.3 per cent annually, the blockchain market is expected to grow by 56 per cent till 2029, creating significant job opportunities in the near future. Essential Skills: Blockchain development, AR development, DAPPs, coding and cryptography
Pharmacologist: The continuous evolution in the field of medicine and the increasing demand for personalised medicine are driving the growth in this field. As the Indian and global pharmaceutical market grows rapidly, crossing $1 trillion in 2023, hospitals, universities, pharmaceutical and biotech industries are all looking to bring on board pharmacists.
Essential Skills: Pharmacology, biochemistry, research methodologies and pharmaceutical law.
Behavioural Health Technician: The rising awareness of mental health issues and the increasing need for personalised patient care underpin the growth of this profession. Jobs in this field are projected to grow 12 per cent from 2019 to 2029, as per the Bureau of Labour Statistics.
Essential Skills: Applied behaviour analysis, understanding of autism spectrum disorders and mental health counselling.
Preparing for Dynamic Future
As the future of careers is dynamic, students must focus on acquiring a broad range of skills and a growth mindset. They should be open to lifelong learning and adaptability. Even as careers evolve, soft skills such as problem-solving, creativity, critical thinking skills, and teamwork will remain timeless. Whichever domains students wish to pursue, they should actively work on cultivating these.
While academic qualifications will continue to hold importance, practical exposure through internships, projects, and workshops will be equally valuable. Students should also actively engage in networking opportunities, both online and offline, and seek mentorship.
Parents can facilitate this by encouraging children to explore various disciplines, learn new technologies, and develop a passion for learning. Schools and universities should also integrate future skills into their curriculum and promote experiential learning.
The future job market is full of opportunities, but it demands a fresh perspective and a proactive approach by understanding the evolving trends and adapting. The future belongs to the prepared!