Projected Job Growth vs. Openings

Job openingsWhat if you were asked to identify the top 10 fastest growing occupations in Florida? The answer might be quite surprising. According to the Statewide Demand Occupations List, these are the winners with the highest percentage of growth expected:

1. Brick masons and Block masons
2. Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
3. Cost Estimators
4. Heating, A.C., and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers
5. Interpreters and Translators
6. Physical Therapist Assistants
7. Medical Secretaries
8. Dental Hygienists
9. Meeting and Convention Planners

What if, however, you were asked which occupations had the most projected openings in Florida? The answer would be quite different, and more in line with typical responses to the former question.

1. Registered Nurses
2. First-line Supervisors of Retail Sales Workers
3. Sales Representatives, Wholesale, and Manufacturing
4. First-line Supervisors of Office and Administrative Support Workers
5. Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks
6. Business Operations Specialists
7. Carpenters
8. Truck Drivers, Heavy and Tractor-Trailer
9. Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses
10. Real Estate Sales Agents

Why does this matter? Labor Market information is a critical element to consider when determining which Career & Technical Programs of Study to develop.

The fastest growing occupations are not always where we want our resources invested, if that growth factor will only result in a small number of job openings. Glaziers have a 4.45 percent projected growth rate, but projected openings of only 221 per year statewide. Registered Nurses, on the other hand, only have a projected growth factor of 2.45 percent, but a projected 7,100 openings every year! If our job is to create opportunities for students to be college and career ready, students need to start focusing on careers that will exist when they are ready to enter the workforce, and more importantly, that will be in demand.

Post by Mellissa Morrow, Former Curriculum Manager for Career & Technical Education (CTE)

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