Even in this economy, there are some jobs that employers are desperate to fill, and can't seem to find enough candidates. These are high-paying jobs, too, starting in the $80,000-per-year range. Unfortunately, they're also the types of jobs that leave most of us smacking ourselves in the forehead and saying, "If only I'd paid more attention in math class!"
Tom Silver, senior vice president of Dice.com North America, which is "the career hub for tech insiders," says that the job openings on his site have increased 35 percent over the same time last year, with 66,672 job openings currently listed on the site. There's a lot of competition among employers for people to fill some of these positions, and those candidates who are qualified will find themselves in the driver's seat when it comes to negotiating salaries and benefits.
"Not only is demand strong for these professionals, but these positions as a group pay on average $10,000 more than the average national paycheck for tech professionals," Silver says. "And confirming their coveted in-demand status, these IT pros are receiving double the pay raise this year, as compared to technology professionals as a whole."
Top 10 hardest tech jobs to fill
- Software Developer
- Database Administrator
- Active Federal Security Clearance
Granted, you have to be extremely tech savvy and "quantitatively and process oriented," but some of the top positions require that you also be creative and a problem solver. In other words, you don't have to be a number cruncher exclusively to be of value in these fields.
And you don't necessarily have to live in the Silicon Valley or other high tech bastions to find a job in these fields. "Demand for security experts is so broad-based, these professionals could work for defense contractors, retailers, or transportation companies, to name a very few," Silver explains. "Not unlike security experts, database administrators are consistently sought after -- earning an average of $91,000 annually."
If you have a knack for this kind of work but haven't been trained in these specific areas or need to brush up and become current, Dice's educations site, Dicelearning.com can help. At this "learning hub for tech insiders," you will find what you need to learn and where you can learn it. For example, if you've been out of school for awhile, it would behoove you to brush up on Sharepoint. "Job postings for that skill are up 66 percent from last year," notes Silver.
So if you were recently laid off and still have some unemployment or severance benefits left, or if you just graduated and are on the verge of returning to school because you can't find a job in your major, you might want to investigate these fields. If you haven't graduated yet and still have time to change your major, even better. That English, history or art major may be fun and fascinating, but it probably won't feed you any time soon. Consider an area with generous paychecks, plenty of raises and -- best of all -- an overabundance of openings.