4 IT Skills That Will Make You A Hot Prospect

By Scott Skinger, CEO and founder of TrainSignal

There are around 4.16 million information technology professionals working in the U.S. today, and that number is expected to rise by 22 percent through the year 2020. Even now, IT expertise is becoming an integral part of business strategy and decision making across all industries. Both in the U.S. and overseas, business is trending toward technology-heavy operations, which is driving people to re-train and re-brand themselves to become more valuable assets in a quickly evolving economy.

From network administrators to virtual system managers, positions are ample across the board, staking a hold in industries such as health care, education, defense and beyond. Yet, several specialized skills are particularly bountiful for those who master the art. These four overarching areas of technology are seeing massive demand from hiring managers, pushing IT professionals to skill-up and advance their competitive edge.

The people that will succeed in this new technology frontier are those who are open to blazing new trails and developing best practices for implementing cutting-edge technologies. As you consider your future in this tech-focused economy, take a look at these particular skill areas that will have employers clamoring for you.

1. Software development
The demand for talented software developers is well-known and not dissipating anytime soon. Gaining the skills to design, write and implement computer software programs is a sure-fire way to ensure you are a valued member of the team. From apps to mobile devices to the cloud, software engineering is a skill that transcends industries. To start from scratch or to brush up on programming skills, head to sites such as Codecademy and Pluralsight that offer introductory and advanced courses. While programming languages number in the hundreds, some of the most job-applicable languages to learn today are Java, Python, Perl and Ruby.

2. Security
With the rising demand for greater security at small and large companies alike, everyone is in the market for security analysts and engineers. A recent report from Burning Glass Technologies indicates that demand for cybersecurity professionals over the past five years grew 3.5 times faster than demand for other IT jobs and 12 times faster than demand for all other jobs.

As businesses invest deeply in big data and transition entirely to the cloud, the result is a greater need for privacy and security infrastructure. Inadequate security practices and the rise of cybercrime is a huge incentive for businesses to beef up their infrastructure and to do it fast. Additionally, the rising popularity of bringing your own device to work (better known as BYOD) is a security concern that has companies scrambling to find IT pros with the skills to build BYOD solutions that satisfy employees and ensure the security of vast amounts of private, internal data.

3. Cloud
The term "cloud computing" addresses all online platforms that enable communication and access to information on the Internet. Most companies have realized that a cloud-based business is not only more efficient, but is expected by customers and employees alike. According to CompTIA, more than 80 percent of companies now use some form of a cloud solution. Companies are moving in droves to shift the core of their business operations to the cloud, facilitating better customer interactions, improving internal communications and expanding their data storage capacity.

The specific IT skills needed to help move operations to an online hub are highly sought-after and are in short supply because of it. According to an IDC study, 61 percent of hiring managers are concerned about the availability of cloud skills in the marketplace. These employers are often looking for IT professionals with certifications in cloud infrastructure from major vendors such as Microsoft, Cisco and VMWare.

4. Big data
Big data experts are becoming more important as businesses expand their capacity to store, digest and use vast amounts of information. IDC predicts that enterprises are on track to buy 138 exabytes of data storage capacity by the year 2017 (one exabyte equals about 150 million gigabytes). While "big data" may be a buzzword, it's an area that all IT professionals should pay special attention to. An entire industry of jobs is emerging requiring specialization in storing, analyzing and executing on big data. By 2015, 4.4 million jobs will be created by this emerging field, but only a third of those jobs will be filled, according to a Gartner study.

Jobs in big data require a broad range of skills, but some that are particularly important to become familiar with are Hadoop, NoSQL, MongoDB, Cassandra, HBase and Pig. As big data becomes the backbone of major business decisions that determine the allocation of millions of dollars, expect this sector to innovate quickly, opening up a variety of IT job opportunities.

The best thing any aspiring or experienced IT pro can do is to constantly learn about where their industry is headed and train in a broad range of IT skills. Even if those skills don't seem to be directly relevant to a current position, IT jobs increasingly require an understanding across multiple types of technologies. For example, network management positions now have a much higher demand for the security skills to build a network infrastructure that is robust and void of vulnerability. The most successful IT pros have a hybrid of skills. That's what allows them to develop the most innovative and effective solutions. Remember, the more comprehensive and current your knowledge is, the more you can bring to the table and the more valuable (and employable) you are in any industry.

10 Fastest Growing Industries In America

A new study from Georgetown says the country will add 55 million jobs this decade.
For years agriculture and manufacturing have been stalling while service sectors have been adding jobs. And that shift will be "cemented" by 2020, according to Nicole Smith, a senior economist at the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. Smith is a co-author of a new study that identifies the fastest-growing industries and it projects that the top five will be service industries, such as health care and hospitality.

Using state and national data, the report by Smith, Anthony Carnevale, the center's director, and Jeff Strohl, the center's research director, projects that a total of 55 million new jobs will be created from 2010 to 2020. Twenty-four million of the jobs are expected to be newly created positions. The rest are expected to open as baby boomers retire.

"If the U.S. Congress can deal with budgetary challenges, we are on schedule for recovery," Carnevale said in a news release accompanying the report. The catch, however, is that there may not be enough qualified workers to fill the openings. According to the Georgetown study, 5 million of the total job vacancies will remain open throughout the decade as Americans fail to receive the proper educational and technical training.

Here are the 10 fastest-growing industries:

10. Private Education Services

Total jobs in 2010: 3,450,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 1,420,000.
Percent growth: 28.

Find a job now in private education services.

9. Natural Resources

Total jobs in 2010: 3,860,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 1,460,000.
Percent growth: 10.

Find a job now in natural resources.

8. Transportation and Utilities Services

Total jobs in 2010: 5,520,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 2,080,000.
Percent growth: 13.

Find a job now in transportation and utilities services.

7. Construction

Total jobs in 2010: 7,370,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 2,760,000.
Percent growth: 12.

Find a job now in construction.

6. Manufacturing

Total jobs in 2010: 10,070,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 3,490,000.
Percent growth: 4.

Find a job now in manufacturing.

5. Leisure and Hospitality Services

Total jobs in 2010: 12,930,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 5,100,000.
Percent Growth: 18

Find a job now in leisure and hospitality services.

4. Health Care Services

Total jobs in 2010: 15,670,000
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 6,590,000
Percent Growth: 26

Find a job now in health care services.

3. Government and Public Education Services

Total jobs in 2010: 18,120,000
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 6,720,000
Percent Growth: 11

Find a job now in government & public education services.

2. Wholesale and Retail Trade Services

Total jobs in 2010: 19,450,000
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 7,160,000
Percent growth: 11

Find a job now in wholesale and retail trade services.

1. Financial Services

Total jobs in 2010: 24,400,000.
Total vacancies 2010-2020: 10,110,000.
Percent growth: 25.
Find a job now in financial services.

Eat, Pray, Find A Job: 7 Foodie Careers

By Annie Favreau

careers for foodies The stretch between Thanksgiving and Christmas is a foodie's favorite time of year. From buttery turkey to gingerbread cookies, 'tis the season of yumminess.
So we've put together a delectable selection of our favorite food-inspired careers. If you're passionate about all aspects of edible goods - from their taste and look, to their origins and history - read on.

Showcase Food as a Food Stylist
As a stylist, you make breakfast, lunch and dinner look their best for photo and film shoots. Mixing your cooking skills with creative visual style, you use many tools - from lipstick and lard, to lacquer and lotion - to get a dish ready for its close-up. However, it's not all about the artistic process: to protect your clients against legal issues, you've got to stay up to date on all truth in advertising laws.
Average Salary: $33,000–$58,000

Develop Food as a Flavor Chemist
Imagine being able to taste your job. Flavorists do it every day. These chemists use their deep knowledge of essential oils, flavor aromas, and botanical extracts to recreate and intensify flavors from nature - or create entirely new ones. The goal: give processed foods that oh-so-perfect taste.
Average Salary: $50,000–$92,000

Purchase Food as an Artisan Food Buyer
Without specialty buyers, food lovers wouldn't be able to pluck that bottle of real Italian olive oil off the shelf, enjoy the tang of Indian turmeric, or add Madagascan vanilla extract to their chocolate chip cookies. Plus, when you're not dealing with international trade regulations and paperwork, you can take time to sample your wares.
Average Salary: $37,000–$66,000

Explore Food as a Dietician
Most people associate dieticians with the idea of food restrictions. Yet much of a dietician's work revolves around introducing clients to a whole new world of flavors, from the sweetness of blueberries to the spiciness of wasabi. Using your appreciation for good, healthy meals, you guide others toward better nutritional choices.
Average Salary: $42,000–$63,000

Write about Food as a Restaurant Critic
Of all the tantalizing food writer jobs - cookbook reviewer, food blogger - this one takes the cake. While this is a competitive field (who doesn't want to get paid to eat?), if you've got a subtle palate to match your excellent writing skills, you too could thrive in this dream job.
Average Salary: $25,000–$51,000

Advocate for Food as a Food Activist
Whether working to improve school meals plans, fighting for better access to fresh vegetables in low-income neighborhoods, or striving to promote stronger food industry safety standards, it's a food activist's mission to promote sustainable and healthy systems from field to plate.
Average Salary: $26,000–$52,000

Study Food as a Culinary Historian
There's no single path for this tasty career. You might write about the history of a food product (anyone read Salt?), lecture on the effect of the coffee trade on world politics, or consult on a film set to make sure the civil war soldiers are eating historically accurate grub. Regardless of the arena, you use your unique set of knowledge to highlight the historical aspects of food and its consumption. Bon appetit!
Average Salary: $33,000–$76,000

7 Oil Field Jobs Companies Are Desperate To Fill

oil field jobs: derrick hand, roustabout

It would have seemed the stuff of science fiction if it hadn't appeared on newspapers across the world: According to new forecasts, the United States may soon overtake Saudi Arabia as the planet's largest oil producing country. Developments in technology and high oil prices have created stunning oil booms across the U.S., transforming sleepy towns into energy powerhouses, and making the longtime dream of American energy independence a possibility again.

There's just one problem: More oil requires more oil workers.

By 2020, one industry report claims that the oil industry will have created an additional 1.3 million positions. "Even if we are [energy independent], we can't hire enough people to keep it running," says Brian Aylor, who works in the oil fields in Midland, Texas, where the current oil boom plunged unemployment to 3.3 percent in September. "There's demand for everything."

Companies in boomtowns like Midland, Texas, pay workers handsomely; kids fresh out of high school can earn $80,000 a year if they're willing to get their hands dirty. And while oilfield experience is preferred (companies are desperately looking for experienced hands), anywhere with oil-soaked shale beneath the feet is probably hungry for workers with any kind of technical background, whether they're military veterans or car mechanics.

AOL Jobs spoke with a half dozen West Texas staffing firms and a number of industry people to find out the most in-demand jobs -- and what it takes to land one. Job seekers pondering a new career in the gas and oil sector can check out the list of positions below, and see if they have the skills and temperament to join America's 21st century energy revolution.

1. Truck Driver

Why It's In Demand: "Because everyone needs trucks, from moving rigs and equipment, to hauling oil and water away, and 'frack' sand," says Ryan Lellis, an oil field geologist in the Permian Basin of West Texas and southeastern New Mexico. "Right now, every company is hurting for that."

What It Pays: An oil industry trucker can make up to $2,500 a week, according to Lonnie Ortiz, who owns L J Trucking, based in Odessa, Texas, although Payscale.com places the average at $45,000 a year.

Why It's A Tough Gig: "Someone with short patience won't make it as a truck driver," Ortiz says. "Someone with a short fuse won't make it as a truck driver." Truckers have to be "go-getters who can figure out problems, self-starters, leaders," he explains, since if they break down, assistance might not come for a while.

Qualifications: "You're a mechanic. You're a tire man. You're a load supervisor," says Ortiz. "You turn out to be lots of things as a truck driver. You're a skilled motorist. You're an electrician. Anything that a job title can be -- you're it."

2. Derrick Hand

Why It's In Demand: Not only are rigs springing up almost everyday, but a lot of current derrick hands are older, and getting ready to retire. "They call it the Great Crew Shift," says Tim Cook, the recruiting manager for Houston-based Pathfinder Staffing.

What It Pays: $69,000 a year, according to Indeed.com.

Why It's A Tough Gig: The derrick hand's job is to monitor the drilling fluid, maintain the pumps, guide the drill pipe, unjam jams, and any and all kinds of lifting, pulling, pushing and climbing in-between. "You're the 'anything that is extremely dangerous' person," says Benham.

Qualifications: Applicants should have some experience with rig work, have no fear of heights, and be able to pass a drug test.

3. Floorhand/Leasehand/Roustabout

Why It's In Demand: The more wells you have running, the more crewmen you need. The name changes depending on the company, but these lower-level hands have to do it all. Brian Aylor, a lease operator, says he calls in the roustabout crew when he can't fix something on the well himself.

What It Pays: $54,000 (according to the Drilling Oil and Natural Gas Wells Salary Survey).

Why It's A Tough Gig: The roustabout does a lot of the essential things on the rig sites that require less technical know-how. "It's going to be manual labor. It's going to be hard work," says Aylor. "Running a shovel, swinging a hammer ... building on locations, maintenance on equipment out in the fields."

"You've got to be a hands-on type of person, and not be afraid to get dirty, and not be afraid to lift heavy things and be around dangerous machinery," says Benham.

Qualifications: A roughneck needs a high school diploma or equivalent, and to be able to lift 150 pounds with the aid of another person, and stand for 12 hours wearing steel-toed boots.

4. MWD Field Engineer

Why It's In Demand: A measuring-while-drilling field engineer is responsible for just that: Taking readings in the field during the drilling process -- to evaluate the drill site, and make sure that the drilling is done properly and efficiently. One job posting describes work hours as "unlimited and irregular."

What It Pays: Between $63,000 and $80,000 according to listings on Glassdoor.com.

Why It's A Tough Gig: The engineers measure "all the fun little numbers you think would matter while you're drilling a hole" says Benham, a specialist at temporary staffing firm in Midland. Those numbers are needed during the entire drilling process, so MWD field engineers can expect some serious demands on their time.

Qualifications: An undergraduate degree in engineering or science, or technical experience. 

Top 20 Jobs That Don't Require A College Degree

top jobs no college degreeBy Aimee Groth

In a tough economy where just about half of graduates are landing jobs in their fields, there's been a lot of debate lately about the value of a college degree.

Careercast.com put together a list of the top 20 jobs that don't require a college degree, ranked by average starting salary, income growth and employment growth. Income growth refers to percentage of growth from starting earnings to the top level; and employment growth refers to the projected increase in number of jobs through 2020 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Here's the list:

1. Dental Hygienist
  • Average Starting Salary: $45,000
  • Income Growth: 109%
  • Employment Growth: 37.70%
  • Average Starting Salary: $40,000
  • Income Growth: 255%
  • Employment Growth: 25.00%
  • Average Starting Salary: $43,000
  • Income Growth: 179%
  • Employment Growth: 21.70%
  • Average Starting Salary: $21,000
  • Income Growth: 114%
  • Employment Growth: 41.30%
  • Average Starting Salary: $29,000
  • Income Growth: 159%
  • Employment Growth: 18.30%
  • Average Starting Salary: $26,000
  • Income Growth: 250%
  • Employment Growth: 14.10%
  • Average Starting Salary: $26,000
  • Income Growth: 158%
  • Employment Growth: 33.70%
  • Average Starting Salary: $31,000
  • Income Growth: 190%
  • Employment Growth: 25.40%
  • Average Starting Salary: $29,000
  • Income Growth: 131%
  • Employment Growth: 12.60%
  • Average Starting Salary: $26,000
  • Income Growth: 342%
  • Employment Growth: 21.90%
  • Average Starting Salary: $30,000
  • Income Growth: 127%
  • Employment Growth: 21.60 %
  • Average Starting Salary: $16,000
  • Income Growth: 163%
  • Employment Growth: 15.70%
  • Average Starting Salary: $16,000
  • Income Growth: 163%
  • Employment Growth: 15.70%
  • Average Starting Salary: $30,000
  • Income Growth: 207%
  • Employment Growth: 7.30%
  • Average Starting Salary: $27,000
  • Income Growth: 304%
  • Employment Growth: 15.60%
  • Average Starting Salary: $26,000
  • Income Growth: 173%
  • Employment Growth: 23.50%
  • Average Starting Salary: $34,000
  • Income Growth: 138%
  • Employment Growth: 1.90%
  • Average Starting Salary: $30,000
  • Income Growth: 140%
  • Employment Growth: 3.20
  • Average Starting Salary: $17,000
  • Income Growth: 112%
  • Employment Growth: 14.80%
  • Average Starting Salary: $25,000
  • Income Growth: 156%
  • Employment Growth: 11.60%

Top 10 Jobs in Banking and Finance

banking finance
Where some people get a thrill out of finishing a crossword puzzle, you get goosebumps from balancing your checkbook. From the college loan check you pay each month to the latte you picked up today on your way to work, there's no part of your finances that goes unaccounted for. Perhaps you should consider one of the following jobs in banking and finance.
1. Financial analysts work for businesses to help them or their clients make investment decisions. Analysts must have a bachelor's degree, often in business administration, accounting, statistics or finance, analysts with a master's degree in business administration will find themselves among the most desirable employees.
Average salary: $58,205/year*;
With benefits and bonuses: $73,594

2. Personal financial advisors use their knowledge of investments, tax laws and insurance to recommend financial options that help individuals meet their short- and long-term goals. Advisors with a bachelor's degree in accounting, finance, economics, business mathematics or law will have the best opportunities for jobs in their field. <
Average salary: $66,405/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $85,553

3. Accountants analyze, plan, evaluate and advise on matters of accounting theory and practice. A bachelor's degree in accounting or a related field is usually required, but those with a master's degree or experience to boot will have better job opportunities.
Average salary: $43,215/year
With benefits and bonuses: $52,813

4. Auditors examine and analyze accounting records and prepare financial reports for clients. Auditors usually need a bachelor's degree, but as with accountants, experience and advanced degrees increase their chances of getting hired.
Average salary: $57,365/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $68,138

5. Loan officers assist individuals and organizations in applying for loans, assess the individuals' creditworthiness and help them determine the most appropriate type of loan for his/her needs. Employers usually require loan officers to have a bachelor's degree in finance, economics or a related field. Loan officers will find experience in banking, lending or sales and knowledge of computers to be huge assets in their job search.
Average salary: $48,318/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $58,685

6. Collectors keep track of accounts that are overdue and attempt to collect payment on them, making computer literacy and good communications skills a must in this job. Most collectors are required to have at least a high school diploma; however, employers prefer workers who have completed some college or who have experience in other occupations that involve contact with the public.
Average salary: $27,960/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $33,215

7. Bank tellers cash checks, accept deposits and loan payments and process withdrawals. They also may sell savings bonds and travelers' checks, accept bill payments and process paperwork. Most tellers have at least a high school diploma, but people with bachelor's degree in business, accounting or liberal arts may get jobs as tellers to break into banking with the hopes of being promoted.
Average salary: $19,828/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $24,793

8. Buyers buy the goods and services a company needs either to resell to customers or for the establishment's own use. Educational requirements vary with the size of the organization, but many manufacturing firms prefer applicants with a bachelor's or master's degree in engineering, business, economics or one of the applied sciences.
Average salary: $44,919/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $54,428

9. Treasurers direct an organization's financial goals, objectives and budgets. Their duties may include overseeing the investment of funds and executing capital-raising strategies. Employers require a bachelor's degree in accounting, finance, economics or business administration; however, employers increasingly are placing emphasis on advanced degrees in these fields.
Average salary: $97,645/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $130,957

10. Budget analysts provide analysis and assistance to help companies develop their annual budgets, decide how to allocate current resources and estimate future financial requirements. A bachelor's degree -- often in finance, economics, accounting, business, statistics, political science or sociology -- is the minimum requirement for most employers, but an advanced degree is often preferred and sometimes required.
Average salary: $55,566/year;
With benefits and bonuses: $67,586

8 Careers For Cubicle Haters

By Larry Buhl
a dog walker with 4 bulldogs
Spring has arrived, and with it comes longing glances from office windows as employees dream of a chance to work away from fluorescent lights and cubicle warrens. If you're considering a career change and want it to involve fresh air, here are eight occupations that can be done, at least partly, in the great outdoors.

1.Animal care worker: This job can be done in a variety of settings, such as kennels, zoos, stables, animal shelters, pet stores, veterinary clinics and aquariums. The job can be physically demanding and the pay is generally low. Experience with animals is more important than a specific degree.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: Faster than average.
Median pay: $19,780 annually, $9.51 hourly*.

2.Archaeologist: Although some archaeologists work in offices or laboratories, others spend time in the field on duties such as assessing the significance of a potential construction site. A master's degree or doctorate is required.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: Faster than average.
Median pay: $54,230 annually, $26.07 hourly.

3.Conservation scientist: Sometimes referred to as foresters, these professionals manage and monitor overall land quality of forests, parks and other natural resources. A bachelor's degree in botany or a related field is expected.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: Slower than average.
Median pay: $57,420 annually, $27.60 hourly.

4. Construction manager: These workers oversee construction projects through organization, scheduling, budgeting and implementation. A bachelor's degree and experience in a construction-related field, plus certification, are usually expected.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: About as fast as average.
Median pay: $83,860 annually, $40.32 hourly.

5. Environmental engineer: Environmental engineers spend much time indoors but can be in the field on construction projects. A bachelor's degree in environmental engineering or a related field -- civil, mechanical or chemical engineering -- is required.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: Faster than average.
Median pay: $78,740 annually, $37.86 hourly.

6. Geological engineer: There are a variety of job titles associated with this profession; duties involve surveying the characteristics of land for mining or other development sites. A bachelor's degree and a state license are required.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: About as fast as average.
Median pay: $82,870 annually, $39.84 hourly.

7.Landscape architect: This job is primarily done inside, but it can also involve frequent visits to job sites. A bachelor's degree and state certification are minimum requirements.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: About as fast as average.
Median pay: $62,090 annually, $29.85 hourly.

8. Surveyor: Many duties are conducted outdoors in various types of terrain. But surveyors also work indoors to prepare legal documents and other reports. A bachelor's degree is usually required, and surveyors are often licensed.
Projected job growth, 2010 to 2020: Faster than average.
Median pay: $54,880 annually, $26.39 hourly.

10 Highest-Paying Temp Jobs

high paying temp jobs
One way to get a foot in the door of a desirable employer is to get hired as a temp. This year, 40 percent of employers plan to hire temporary and contract workers, compared to 36 percent last year, according to an annual forecast by CareerBuilder (an AOL Jobs sponsor). Of these companies, 42 percent plan to offer some of their temporary workers permanent, full-time work.
Employers turn to temporary workers when they need to quickly ramp up operations in response to rising demand for their services or goods, says Eric Gilpin, president of the career site's staffing and recruiting group. "For job seekers, it's a great way to build relationships with employers and expand your resume, and is often an in-road into permanent placement within firms," he says.
What's more, many temp jobs are well-paying, providing wages that top $25 an hour (which during the course of year would top $50,000, based on a 40-hour workweek.) Using data from CareerBuilder, Economic Modeling Specialists and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, AOL Jobs has compiled a list of the highest-paying temp jobs, pulled from more than 90 national and state employment resources. (Note: the median wages noted for each occupation are those paid to workers regardless of whether they are permanent or temporary employees.)
Check out the list below, and then let us if these temporary jobs are careers you'd consider in your next job search.

10. Human Resource, Training and Labor Relations Specialists (recruits, screens, interviews and places workers, and may handle other HR work, such as employee relations, training, and payroll and benefits):
  • Number of people employed: 59,597.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 11,893 -- 25 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $26.44.

9. Accountant and Auditor (prepares and examines financial records; ensures financial records are accurate, and taxes are paid properly and on time):
  • Number of people employed: 10,885.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 1,689 -- 18 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $30.04.

8. Business Operations Specialist, other (works with various departments to coordinate operations, hires workers and buys supplies needed to ensure that a company can provide the goods and services that its customers want):
  • Number of people employed: 10,528.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 1,677 -- 19 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $30.82.

7. Registered Nurse (provides care and educates patients about various health conditions):
  • Number of people employed: 66,844.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 8,766 -- 15 percent growth..
  • Median hourly wage: $32.10.

6. Computer Programmer (writes code to create software programs, and turns designs created by software developers and engineers into instructions that computers can follow):
  • Number of people employed: 11,487.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 1,821 -- 19 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $34.48.

5. Management Analyst (proposes ways to improve the efficiency of companies, and advises managers on how to make organizations more profitable through reduced costs and increased revenues):
  • Number of people employed: 9,891.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 1,492 -- 18 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $35.81.

4. Computer Systems Analyst (studies employers' current computer systems and procedures, and makes recommendations to management to help the organization operate more efficiently and effectively):
  • Number of people employed: 8,197.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 1,278 -- 18 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $37.62.

3. Software Developer, Applications (develops applications and operating systems for computers and other electronic devices that allow workers to perform specific tasks, e.g., word processing):
  • Number of people employed: 5,266.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 804 -- 18 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $42.92.

2. General and Operations Manager (manages and motivates workers, develops business strategy, and solves organizational problems as well as those of customers):
  • Number of people employed: 21,935.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 2,919 -- 15 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $46.39.

1. Software Developer, Systems Software (creates software to help companies operate more efficiently and effectively):
  • Number of people employed: 5,795.
  • Jobs added from 2010 to 2012: 861 -- 17 percent growth.
  • Median hourly wage: $46.69.

10 High-Paying Entry-Level Jobs

high paying entry level jobs In today's competitive job market, it can be hard to imagine that there are jobs that pay well but don't require years of experience. But many sectors offer high-paying entry-level jobs that are appealing to mid-career changers or recent college graduates (who are likely eager to get out from under a mound of student loan debt).
With the help of PayScale.com, a salary data and software company, AOL Jobs has compiled a list of 10 careers that offer high salaries to entry-level workers -- those who have been on the job for two years or less. Many of them require a college degree, but there are exceptions. (Note: The jobs listed below are a sampling of highly paid entry-level jobs and not a comprehensive, ranked list.)
Check out the list below and tell us what you think. And if you have other suggestions for great-paying entry-level jobs, let us know.

Merchandise Planner (plans, directs and coordinates the activities of buyers, purchasing officers and others involved in buying materials, products and services):
  • Median Annual Pay: $51,400.*
  • Degree: Bachelor's (merchandising, marketing, business or finance).**

Forensic Accountant (examines tax and business records for accuracy and irregularities):
  • Median Annual Pay: $51,400.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (accounting or finance -- certification may be required).

Pharmaceutical Sales Representative (provides drug information and product samples to physicians and monitors prescribing patterns of physicians in a designated geographic area):
  • Median Annual Pay: $52,900.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (pharmaceutical science, pharmacology, toxicology or related fields).

Power Plant Operator (controls systems that generate and distribute electric power, which may include shift work):
  • Median Annual Pay: $54,400.
  • Degree: High school diploma.

Network Security Analyst (plans, installs and monitors security measures that protect computer networks and information):
  • Median Annual Pay: $55,700.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (information technology, mathematics or computer science).

Software Developer (creates operating systems or applications for computers and other devices):
  • Median Annual Pay: $58,200.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (computer science).

Actuarial Assistant (assists with setting insurance premium rates and performing related data research):
  • Median Annual Pay: $58,400.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (mathematics, actuarial science, statistics or finance).

Investment Banking Analyst (provides financial services, investment advice and banking products to wealthy individuals and institutions):
  • Median Annual Pay: $69,100.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (business or finance).

Business Technology Analyst (helps to improve business performance through the use of information technology):
  • Median Annual Pay: $69,900.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (business, information technology or computer science).

Petroleum Engineer (designs and develops methods for extracting oil and gas from deposits below the earth's surface and from older wells using novel methods):
  • Median Annual Pay: $87,600.
  • Degree: Bachelor's (engineering, preferably petroleum engineering).

7 Part-Time Jobs That Pay Up To $40 An Hour

For some 8 million Americans, part-time jobs are a way of life. Many are cobbling together several part-time gigs while they search for that elusive full-time job. Some, though, prefer part-time work because it offers flexibility and time off for other pursuits, including raising kids.
But whether you are looking for part-time work out of choice or necessity, you probably want to find one that offers some personal satisfaction and good wages. With the help of PayScale, AOL Jobs has a compiled a list of the seven best part-time jobs. Some require little training, and many pay more than $25 an hour.

One caveat: The wages shown for each position represent a range of amounts paid to the 25th and 75th percentiles of workers who've been operating in their fields for five to eight years. In other words, a quarter of workers within a given job description earn less than the reported low wage, while the rest earn less than the reported high wage.
Also, PayScale notes that the range of wages shown are national numbers. If you live in a metropolitan area, you'll probably earn far more -- sometimes twice as much -- than what's listed here.

School Bus Driver
Hourly Wage Range: $12.40 to $16.70, nationally. (As noted, pay is often higher in urban markets, such as New York City, where the hourly median wage is $29.50.)
Median Weekly Hours Worked: 26
What you'd do: No surprises here -- school bus drivers transport children to and from school and related special events. Depending on several factors, including the distance to be traveled on a given route and when school starts, part-time school bus drivers may start work early in the morning -- 6 a.m. or earlier isn't unusual. Others work the afternoon "shift," picking up children from school and bringing them back home. Weather, heavy traffic and unruly children can make the job challenging at times, though one perk that many school bus drivers enjoy is summer break, giving them two to three months to pursue other jobs or interests.
What you need to get started: A commercial driver's license is usually required, and certain hearing and vision requirements must be met.
Looking for a job as a school bus driver? Click here get started.

Makeup Artist
Hourly Wage Range: $14.70 to $23.50
Median Weekly Hours Worked: 20
About the Job: Makeup artists enhance performers' and consumers' appearance through the application of cosmetics, which may include knowledge of period styles to reflect actors' roles. They work in a wide variety of settings, including theaters, broadcast studios, amusement parks, as well as boutiques and department stores. States with a significant show business industry -- New York, California and Nevada -- have the highest numbers of workers employed in this profession. Ohio and Texas, with numerous large media markets and amusement parks, also rank high.

What you need to get started: Most makeup artists complete formal training that requires a high school diploma and may include obtaining an associate degree in cosmetology or bachelor's degree in theater. Some states also require cosmetologists and makeup artists to be licensed.
Looking for a job as a makeup artist? Click here get started.

Hourly Wage Range: $12.70 to $27
Median Weekly Hours Worked: 8
What you'd do: Think of a tutor as a personalized teacher, who typically works one-on-one with students who are are having difficulty comprehending a specific field of study, such as language or math. The job requires patience and a willingness to listen. It also requires organization, an attention to detail and the ability to show up on time.
What you need to get started: There are few industry standards that apply to tutors, who generally gain expertise in a field of study through their own achievements, such as a high school diploma, an associate degree or a bachelor's degree. Certification is available through numerous organizations, such as the College Reading & Learning Association and the American Tutoring Association.
Looking for a job as a tutor? Click here get started.

Dance Teacher
Hourly Wage Range: $15.30 to $24.50
Median Weekly Hours Worked: 8
What you'd do: Teaching dance often involves working one-on-one with students to help them master the techniques in different styles of dance -- jazz, ballroom, Western swing, tap, children's -- though instructors frequently work with large groups. Settings vary and include dance halls or studios, classrooms, restaurants, retirement communities, resorts and even cruise ships. It requires a willingness to work with people and patience in dealing with students struggling to learn.
What you need to get started: Education and training requirements vary, however, part-time dance instructors typically require two years of teaching experience.
Looking for a job as a dance teacher? Click here get started.

English Teacher for Non-Native Speakers
Hourly Wage Range: $18.10 to $30.50
Median Weekly Hours Worked: 17
What you'd do: Teaching English as a foreign language can be rewarding but also challenging. Students may be reluctant to learn or find English to difficult to master. For instructors, that means being well prepared with lesson plans, a knowledge of how to inspire and motivate struggling students and a degree of patience. Public and private grade and high schools, college campuses and community organizations are typical settings. Demand for English as a second language, or ESL, instruction is such that qualified teachers can land a job in virtually any country in the world.
What you need to get started: Generally, a bachelor's degree is required; a certification specializing in teaching ESL is also available from numerous institutions, including many colleges and universities.
Looking for a job as a English teacher for speakers of other languages? Click here get started.

Flight Attendant
Hourly Wage Range: $26 to $34.80
Median Weekly Hours Worked: 20
What you'd do: Though viewed by some travelers as little more than airborne waiters and waitresses, the primary responsibility of flight attendants is the safety of passengers aboard aircraft, which often includes reminding them about what is and isn't allowed during flight. There are perks, of course, which may include travel to many destinations and pay that's near the top for part-time work. Downsides include dealing with stubborn or unruly passengers, frequent downtime, and working in an industry that has gone through major layoffs in recent years.
What you need to get started: Many major airlines require flight attendants to have a college degree. A professional appearance and an outgoing personality are also key to landing the job.
Looking for a job as a flight attendant? Click here get started.

Fortune 500: 10 Best Companies To Work For In 2013

Man reaching out to shake handsOn Monday, Fortune magazine released the Fortune 500, its annual ranking of the 500 wealthiest publicly traded U.S. companies. You can learn a lot from the businesses that dominate the list, like the fact that America loves oil, credit cards, and cars. But for your average job-seeking American, there's an important detail missing: Which of these companies would you actually want to work for?

So Fortune magazine looked at which of the Fortune 500 also appeared on their best-companies-to-work-for list this year, which takes into account factors such as work-life balance, training, pay and turnover. So if you like the stability, benefits and opportunities offered by extremely rich corporations, but don't like the bureaucracy, invisibility or slow-pace that sometimes dog them, check out Fortune's top picks below.

10. Whole Foods
Whole Foods is known as an ethical company when it comes to its food, from locally-sourced produce to lovingly raised chickens. But its heart extends to its employees too, giving them a better starting pay than their competitors and encouraging them to move up.
Looking for a job at Whole Foods? Start your search here.

9. Darden Restaurants
Darden Restaurants is a curious find on this list, since the parent company of casual eating favorites Red Lobster, Olive Garden, The Capital Grille and LongHorn Steakhouse has been sued repeatedly by employees for wage theft, discrimination and other alleged sins. But it seems that many employees are more than happy on the job, including 135,000 part-timers, Fortune points out, to whom Darden offers low-cost health insurance.
Looking for a job at Darden Restaurants? Start your search here.

8. Marriott International
"You will want to make a career here," says a current Marriott employee in enterprise operations. By most accounts, Marriott is just incredibly well-run: open and encouraging management, reasonable policies, great pay and benefits, superb discounts on hotel rooms for family and friends. On the downside, working for a major hotel chain means sometimes working weekends and holidays, and moving to a new town if you want to climb the ladder.
Looking for a job at Marriott International? Start your search here.

7. Stryker
"I enjoy coming to work every day and I have a lot of best friends at work," wrote a current Stryker engineer on Glassdoor.com. And while some employees gripe that they're slightly underpaid, everyone gushes about the drive and integrity of their co-workers. Fortune notes that the medical device manufacturer also tries to keep the culture fun with ping pong tables and "pie-your-manager" contests.
Looking for a job at Stryker? Start your search here.

6. American Express
For a company so large, American Express offers its employees an impressive level of flexibility, according to reports on Glassdoor.com, including the opportunity to work evenings and weekends or from home. The financial services firm also has won numerous accolades for its commitment to diversity.
Looking for a job at American Express? Start your search here.

5. Devon Energy
"Fast paced and performance based," writes a Devon Energy senior systems administrator on Glassdoor.com. "You are very well rewarded for delivering and meeting your goals." And that's in addition to the top-of-the-line salaries and benefits at this Oklahoma City-based oil and gas producer. And like many of the companies on this list, the openness of the C-suite sets it apart. Fortune reports that President and CEO John Richels sometimes calls up employees to thank them for good work.
Looking for a job at Devon Energy? Start your search here.

4. Chesapeake Energy
Employees at the oil and gas exploration and production company, from geologists to truck drivers to IT support, enjoy an extensive benefits package, including a 401(k) match of up to 15 percent. Workers at the Oklahoma City campus say it's beautiful, and that its onsite restaurants are remarkably good. Employees also enjoy regular bonuses, and in 2011, 8,000 of them received $8 million in bonuses simply for following safe practices, Fortune reports.
Looking for a job at Chesapeake Energy? Start your search here.

3. Qualcomm
This electronics company has made it onto Fortune's best-companies-to-work-for list for years, in addition to winning accolades for its training opportunities and the leg up it offers interns and entry-level staff. Employees on Glassdoor.com say the work is cutting edge, the benefits generous, and the culture welcoming, although perhaps not as hip as other tech firms.
Looking for a job at Qualcomm? Start your search here.

2. NetApp
At this data storage company, "everything just works," says one former senior analyst on Glassdoor.com. That includes training opportunities, time off to volunteer, competitive salaries, and flexibility. Others praise how accessible the executives are, and Fortune reports that Vice Chairman Tom Mendoza calls 10 to 20 employees into his office everyday to personally thank them for their work.

 Looking for a job at NetApp? Start your search here.

1. Google
There's nary a best-place-to-work list that Google hasn't topped. The perks of working at the world's most popular website, including free gourmet sushi and free haircuts, have become the stuff of legend. So much so that it's subject of an upcoming movie  starring Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn.
Google is even developing a new mega-campus, so perfectly designed that every employee will purportedly be able to work by natural light, without any glare on their screens. In fact, the only thing that employees seem to complain about is that all the employees are so amazing that they're too amazing for their jobs.
Looking for a job at Google? Start your search here.

Source: AOL

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