5 Dying Professions Job Hunters Should Avoid Read more at http://www.kiplinger.com/slideshow/business/T012-S001-worst-jobs-for-the-future-2015/index.html#8P4fSvD1LAV6fxrf.99

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The U.S. job market is steadily improving, yet many Americans are still struggling to get hired. And if they work in dying professions, that may be the case not only today but also in the years ahead. The challenge will be particularly big for job seekers with limited education.Employment opportunities will be fewer for those who lack coveted degrees and training, and the pay will be lower.

We analyzed 784 popular occupations, looking at which jobs have been adding to their ranks over the past decade and which are projected to continue the trend into the next decade. We also looked at recent hiring demand for each occupation. We favored bigger salaries, of course, but also promising careers that require lower levels of education to get started. After all, a good-paying job that doesn’t require a college degree saves on student loans and earns you a paycheck faster.

Despite that advantage, jobs calling for just a high school education or less littered the bottom of our rankings. (By contrast, all of our picks for the best jobs for the future require at least an associate’s degree to get started.) “It’s bad news for people who only have a high school degree,” says Anthony Carnevale, director of the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. He notes that the U.S. economy has moved from being production-based to service-based, with a rising need for professionals in finance, information systems, education and health care—”all of which require high-skill, higher-educated workers,” he says.

Floral Designer

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Total number of jobs: 58,440

Job growth, 2004-2014: -24.7% (All jobs: 5.2%)

Projected job growth, 2014-2024: -10.5% (All jobs: 11.1%)

Median annual salary: $23,088 (All jobs: $41,683)

Typical education: High school diploma or equivalent

For floral designers, the bloom has fallen off the rose. After a surge of new flower-shop openings in the 1980s and ’90s, their numbers have fallen dramatically. Blame budget-conscious consumers, who are opting to buy loose, fresh-cut flowers from grocery stores instead of elaborate bouquets and arrangements from florists. Plus, the rise of the Internet has allowed some florists to operate more efficiently and reduce the number of brick-and-mortar shops. If your heart is set on a floral-focused future, apply for a position at a grocery store, where hiring demand will be stronger.

 

Door-to-Door Sales Worker

 

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Total number of jobs: 86,979

Job growth, 2004-2014: -23.1%

Projected job growth, 2014-2024: -18.8%

Median annual salary: $19,968

Typical education: High school diploma or equivalent

Better dramatized by sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick than Arthur Miller, the death of the traveling salesman can be chalked up to advancing technology. When businesses are able to contact millions of customers online with the press of a button, going door to door has become an enormously inefficient way to push products. And the people once charged with doing so are being replaced by solicitations broadcast via Web sites, e-mail and social media outlets.

Woodworking Machine Operator

 

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Total number of jobs: 70,207

Job growth, 2004-2014: -32.3%

Projected job growth, 2014-2024: 3.0%

Median annual salary: $27,331

Typical education: High school diploma or equivalent

Woodworking machine operators man drill presses, sanders, planers and the like. But as advancing technology has streamlined the production process, fewer people have been needed to do this type of work. “The old job, where you punch in every day and do the same thing for eight hours and then you go home and forget about it, that’s kind of gone,” says Carnevale. “Now there’s a new requirement to be able to use knowledge effectively, to solve problems and think critically about what you’re doing.”

If you are determined to stick with wood, the good news is that some lost positions are expected to slowly return over this decade. However, the jobs are likely to require more skill and training. Completion of woodworking courses or certification may help you compete. Classes in wood technology, furniture manufacturing and production management, for example, are offered at some technical schools, community colleges and universities. Check with the Architectural Woodwork Institute or the Woodwork Career Alliance of North America for more about professional certifications.

 

Cabinetmaker

 

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Total number of jobs: 100,745

Job growth, 2004-2014: -29.4%

Projected job growth, 2014-2024: -3.6%

Median annual salary: $30,846

Typical education: High school diploma or equivalent

Cabinetmakers and bench carpenters suffer from the same job-loss pains as woodworking machine operators. Most of these jobs have been lost over the past decade due to advancing technology; fewer people have been needed to operate the machines that pump out the same products. The field is also very sensitive to economic cycles and is likely to rise and fall with the housing market.

Metal and Plastic Molding Machine Operator

 

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Total number of jobs: 127,292

Job growth, 2004-2014: -19.2%

Projected job growth, 2014-2024: -5.8%

Median annual salary: $28,454

Typical education: High school diploma or equivalent

Although metal and plastic are durable materials, the U.S. labor market for people who work with them is not quite as sturdy. Many of the old metal- and plastic-production jobs are now being done more efficiently by machines or more affordably abroad. Even robots are getting into the act. Lower-skill positions that involve manually setting and operating machines—including molding, core-making and casting machines—are becoming increasingly scarce.

kiplinger.com

 

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