While the overall economy struggles and the job market stagnates across a wide range of industries, demand for talented employees in the healthcare field hasn't stumbled at the same rate. In fact, some healthcare jobs are experiencing steady demand that's actually predicted to surge over the next few years. Many of these expanding markets are centered around nursing and healthcare IT. What are some of the reasons for this steady and growing demand? And how can employees take advantage of a playing field that may be tipping in their favor?
Reasons for Rising Demand in Healthcare
The primary explanation for stability in the healthcare field seems to be simple: people may choose to opt in and out of other consumer markets, but nobody chooses to get sick. And as people age, their demand for healthcare services begins to spike. When the baby boomer generation entered kindergarten, then college, then the workforce, their arrival came as a surprise in every case, and their numbers overwhelmed systems that weren't ready for them. As this population surge enters retirement age, this time the healthcare system will be caught off guard, and healthcare providers will be in short supply. Specifically, new positions for RNs are likely to open up in every state.
The market for healthcare IT professionals will also continue its current surge. As electronic medical record keeping systems are developed, scaled, implemented, and maintained, providers and system designers will rely heavily on skilled engineers and technicians. Demand will also expand into areas like database consolidation and information security.
How can Employees Navigate this New Marketplace?
To take advantage of the surge in demand for RNs, colleges will likely be offering expanded nursing programs in coming years. Those who begin working toward a nursing degree this fall will likely graduate into a marketplace marked by vast opportunities, rising pay, and intense competition. Some of the key skills required for a successful career in nursing include quantitative ability, compassion, and the ability to handle multiple tasks at once on a tight schedule.
Nursing is ranked as one of the most challenging and most rewarding jobs in the healthcare field. If you have what it takes to handle these challenges, consider pursuing a career as an RN, LPN or nurse practitioner. But choose your educational institution carefully; watch out for unaccredited or unrecognized degree programs.
As for healthcare IT, demand will rise the highest for employees who have experience in areas like system implementation, ground-up application development, and database management. Healthcare facilities will need new back office systems put in place and upgrades to existing systems, so vendors and providers will be looking for employees who can handle related tasks.
Cyber security will also become a burgeoning field, especially in the context of healthcare. Privacy concerns are growing and information management systems are becoming more and more complex. And as these shifts take place, those with a background in information security will be able to command higher salaries and exercise greater control over their career options.
The healthcare field is expanding, and opportunities are rising for talented employees who have what it takes to succeed. Polish your skills and get the career guidance you need. Start with a visit toLiveCareer.com for job search tips and resume building tools that can help you get ahead.