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Why Software Developers Have the Best Job in the USA in 2018

In recent years, the healthcare industry dominated the best jobs in America. But according to the recent U.S. News and World Report’s annual survey, the top spot has been taken over by Software Developers.

There was only one other non-healthcare related position in the top ten and that position was taken by Statisticians at number six.

All other positions in the best jobs top ten list continued to be dominated by the healthcare industry. Dentists took second place, followed by Physician Assistants in third, Nurse Practitioners in fourth, and Orthodontists in fifth place.

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The ranking that’s based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics judged each job based on the following factors:

  • Demand
  • Stress levels
  • 10-year growth percentage
  • 10-year growth volume
  • Work/life balance

According to their findings, these so-called “creative minds behind computer programs” commanded an average salary of $108,080. With the continuing shortage of top tech talent, the enormous demand for software engineers is expected to continue for years to come.

While software development can be a highly stressful endeavor, things like work/life balance, demand, and growth potential have made it the best job in the U.S.

Elsewhere in the top 100, other technology jobs like Information Security Analysts came in at 32, IT Managers at 42, and Computer Systems Analysts came in at 46.

This reflects recent trends in the job market where data analytics and problem-solving skills in technology are necessary and in high-demand across most industries.

Technology Forms the Backbone of Most Industries

As all businesses get digitally transformed, they will be more dependent on technology to function. This means that software developers won’t just be needed by just technology companies, but all types of businesses that need to develop and support both internal and external applications.

These days nearly every type of company is also looking to leverage big data to solve problems, so this technological boom has created many new opportunities for engineers, software developers, and statisticians.

These types of workers are also actively developing the algorithms that are accelerating change across the global labor market.

However, this isn’t the first time that software developers topped the list, it happened before in 2014. But since then healthcare jobs, particularly dentistry, got back on top of the best jobs list.

This phenomenon might repeat itself as healthcare related jobs are expected to grow by 18% from 2016 to 2026. This is directly attributed to the large population of aging baby boomers who will need care going forward.

The Best-Paying Jobs Are Still in Healthcare

While software developers might have topped the list, the best-paying jobs are still in the healthcare with an average salary of $269,600. As demand continues to grow within this sector over the next eight years, you can expect this trend to continue going forward.

Jobs in America that command the best remuneration are as follows:

  • Anesthesiologist
  • Surgeon
  • Obstetrician and Gynecologist
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
  • Orthodontist

But as the demand for software developers continues to outstrip supply, you can expect their salaries to continue its upward trajectory to help attract top talent.

For companies that are unable to compete in such a fierce job market, the next best option is offshoring to countries like Ukraine where there’s a pool of top tech talent at a significantly lower cost.

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IT Storyteller and Copywriter
Andrew's current undertaking is big data analytics and AI as well as digital design and branding. He is a contributor to various publications with the focus on emerging technology and digital marketing.