Job Market Insight: The Best Careers For Women in 2013

December 28, 2012  |  

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Planning on looking for a new job in 2013? You are not alone. According to recent surveys, more than over 80 percent of workers said they planned to look for a new job in the New Year, reports Forbes. And 60 percent said they wanted to change career paths. And it appears more women will be making career shifts. “For the last few years, more women than men have pursued MBAs in order to make a mid-career switch,” states the magazine.

So what fields should you look into? Forbes has the answer. They just released the “The 10 Best Jobs For Women In 2013” list. The magazine based the ranking on jobs satisfaction, salary, projected growth as well as annual openings. The data was analyzed by jobs expert Laurence Shatkin, Ph.D., author of Best Jobs For The 21st Century.

Topping the list were jobs in health care, which is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy and dominated by women. What was surprising, writes Forbes is that most of the jobs on the roundup “are high-level professional jobs requiring a major education and time commitment. For example, lawyers and judges and top-level managers and executives — jobs known for long hours and a lot of stress — have some of the highest satisfaction levels among women.”

Also, some of the best jobs for women are ones where women are in the minority of workers, such as actuaries (only 29 percent are women) and petroleum engineers (five percent).

There are more women in the professional ranks these days; they now earn the majority of professional and doctoral degrees, up from just 10 percent in 1961, writes Forbes.  The number of women in law school too has increased from four percent in 1963 to 44 percent today. Women in medical school jumped from six percent to 49 percent. But as Forbes points out, women still face significant leadership and wage gaps, earning just 82 percent of what their male counterparts earn with just one year out of college.

Here are the top five best jobs for women in 2013:

No. 1: Diagnosing Doctors (e.g. Dentists, Optometrists, Physicians)

Percentage reporting high satisfaction levels: 60%
Median salary: $121,000
Forecasted growth through 2020: 27%
Average annual openings: 79,000

No. 2: Health Professionals (e.g. Registered Nurses, Pharmacists, Dieticians)

Percentage reporting high satisfaction levels: 52%
Median salary: $70,000
Forecasted growth through 2020: 26%
Average annual openings: 141,000

No. 3: Medical Scientists*

Percentage reporting high satisfaction levels: 56%
Median salary: $76,000
Forecasted growth through 2020: 36%
Average annual openings: 4,000
*Excluding practitioners

No. 4: Lawyers and Judges

Percentage reporting high satisfaction levels: 55%
Median salary: $112,000
Forecasted growth through 2020: 10%
Average annual openings: 23,000

No. 5: Actuaries

Percentage reporting high satisfaction levels: 56%
Median salary: $91,000
Forecasted growth through 2020: 27%
Average annual openings: 2,000

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