20 Hot Job Tracks When Baby Boomers Retire
Thinking about a career in teaching? Special-education programs are crying for qualified instructors. You're a salesperson by nature? Consider the burgeoning market for electronic information. U.S. News talked to dozens of experts in 20 professions to pinpoint the "jobs for the future" profiled in the following pages. (For folks taking different paths, we also highlight salaries for other job titles.) One thing most of these promising careers have in common: Computer savvy will give you the edge.
ACCOUNTING: Forensic Accountant White-collar crime continues its climb--as does the need for gumshoe accountants. Losses from insurance fraud may run in excess of $100 billion annually; the Securities and Exchange Commission's investment fraud caseload is up 60 percent in the past five years. Number crunchers with a Dick Tracy bent are called in by law firms, government agencies and companies to sniff out phony insurance claims and improper securities trading, for example. Many small accounting firms now sleuth exclusively. One, Campos & Stratis of Teaneck, N.J., has expanded from 23 offices worldwide to 36 since 1990. Price Waterhouse has hired more than 500 forensic accountants in the past four years and expects to add 100 this year.
HOT TRACK SALARIES (AVERAGE) ENTRY LEVEL: $35,000--$60,000 SENIOR: $55,000--$80,000 PARTNER: $95,000--$300,000
TRAINING. An accounting degree is preferred, but firms may hire regulatory agents, bankers and economists. Training is often done in house.
RUNNER-UP HOT TRACK. Environmental accountant. Firms must assess the costs of environmental programs compared with the costs of inaction--like lawsuits.
WHAT ACCOUNTING JOBS PAY PAYROLL CLERK: $20,500--$24,750* CREDIT ANALYST: $26,500--$33,000* BILLING MANAGER: $27,000--$32,750* SENIOR INTERNAL AUDITOR: $36,500--$45,000* CORPORATE TAX MANAGER: $68,000--$108,000+ CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER: $235,000--$300,000
Note: Average salaries for 1996. *At firms with $150 million plus in sales, +$250 million plus, Å$500 million plus. Sources: American Inst. of Certified Public Accountants, Campos & Stratis, Federal Bureau of Investigation, National Insurance Crime Bureau, Price Waterhouse, Robert Half International
ADVERTISING: Media Planner Not long ago, the people who decided where ads should go had to choose among television, radio, newspapers and magazines. Now add cable and the online services, electronic publications from the Wall Street Journal to Woman's Day and World Wide Web sites on every imaginable interest--888 of them now accept advertising. The media planner, who generally works for an advertising agency, studies research about which consumers are watching, reading or logging on to what and huddles with the creative ad designers to work out an advertising campaign. Fallon McElligott, an agency in Minneapolis whose clients include Lee jeans and Holiday Inn, has 32 media planners, 15 of whom have been hired in the past two years.
HOT TRACK SALARIES (AVERAGE) ENTRY LEVEL: $28,000--$33,000 MIDLEVEL: $60,000--$80,000 TOP: $100,000 and up
TRAINING. A bachelor's degree is required in liberal arts, psychology or a related field; many employers really want a master's in business, advertising or communications.
RUNNER-UP HOT TRACK. Account-planning researcher. This member of the team serves up the data media planners rely on.
WHAT ADVERTISING JOBS PAY JUNIOR ASSISTANT: $23,800 ART DIRECTOR: $52,000 CHIEF COPYWRITER: $56,000 MEDIA DIRECTOR: $58,000 SENIOR ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE: $71,000 CREATIVE DIRECTOR: $90,000 CHAIRMAN/CEO: $129,000