The health care sector in the U.S. was unsurprisingly the leader in job gains in the last month of 2017, according to data reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
However, no occupation in the industry could win the first place spot on U.S. News & World Report’s latest ranking of the best overall jobs for 2018.
Most likely due to the ever-increasing demand and reliance on technology worldwide, software developer took the No. 1 spot, marking the first year since 2015 that a health care job did not top the list. Other tech jobs that made the list include information security analyst (No. 32), IT manager (No. 42) and computer systems analyst (No. 46) due to the high-demand for problem-solving skills in technology and data analytics across most industries today.
“Nearly every type of company is looking for people who can analyze and interpret data to solve problems,” said Kim Castro, executive editor at U.S. News. “This technological boom is creating new opportunities for statisticians, engineers and software developers– these workers are developing the algorithms that are rapidly changing the global job market.”
Still, jobs in the health care sector dominated the list due to their high salaries, low unemployment rates and the predicted growth within the job market in the years to come due to the demand for doctors, nurses and medical support workers across the nation. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the health care field is expected to grow by 18% by 2026, which would add 2.3 million new jobs—more than in any other industry. Dentist, physician assistant, nurse practitioner and orthodontist fill out the rest of the top five spots on the best jobs list, in that order.
Moreover, the majority of best-paying jobs can be found in the health care industry. With an average salary of nearly $270,000, anesthesiologist takes the top spot, followed by surgeon (nearly $253,000) and obstetrician and gynecologist (roughly $234,300), respectively.
In the business community, the top five jobs were: Statistician, actuary, mathematician, cost estimator and business operations manager, in that order.
Meanwhile, the three of the top five best-paying cities were in California—San Francisco, San Jose and San Rafael, respectively—while New York, N.Y. and Anchorage, Alaska rounded out the list.
U.S. News calculated the best jobs ranking by taking data from the BLS to identify jobs with the greatest hiring demand, using seven component measures to score the occupations. These include 10-year growth volume, 10-year growth percentage, median salary, employment rate, future job prospects, stress level and work-life balance.