20 Hot Job Tracks When Baby Boomers Retire
Note: Median salaries for 1996. *Average salaries for 1996. Sources: American Society for Information Science, Christian & Timbers, E-Span, Novell, Source EDP, WebCrawler, Wyse Cohen
LAW: Intellectual Property Jobs are admittedly tight these days for lawyers in many fields. But pirates of original works in video, audio, print and now digital formats are giving intellectual-property specialists plenty of work. Patents, trademarks, copyrights, biotechnology advances, industrial designs and trade secrets all fall within their purview. The specialty is growing as technology makes it easier for thieves to rip off unlimited copies of computer software and electronic information, and as the market for these illegal wares expands. Congress is considering updating U.S. copyright law to reflect this reality. Membership in the intellectual-property section of the American Bar Association has nearly doubled over the past decade, to 13,689.
HOT TRACK SALARIES (AVERAGE) ENTRY LEVEL: $49,300 AVERAGE: $312,600 TOP: $600,000
TRAINING. Many in the field boast a technical degree in engineering or science, along with the J.D.
RUNNER-UP HOT TRACK. Corporate lawyer. It's true that many companies have laid off attorneys. But lawyers with years of experience in securities and transactions are in short supply.
WHAT LEGAL JOBS PAY FIRST-YEAR ATTORNEY (LAW FIRM): $49,300 GENERAL ATTORNEY (FEDERAL GOV'T.): $67,900 PATENT ATTORNEY (FEDERAL GOV'T.): $76,300 CIRCUIT COURT JUDGE: $141,700 CHIEF JUSTICE (U.S. SUPREME COURT): $171,500 PARTNER (LAW FIRM): $375,900*
Note: Average salaries for 1995. *Total compensation. Sources: Altman Weil Pensa, American Bar Association, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Jenkens & Gilchrist, the National Law Journal
LAW ENFORCEMENT: Crime Analyst Start with a map of all the burglaries in a neighborhood. Then overlay their times and days of the week, plus the addresses of local offenders. Result? An analyst armed with computer-mapping software might find out in minutes when and where the perpetrator is apt to strike next. An estimated 30 percent of the nation's police departments already rely on computer-mapping software. And most at least use a database or spreadsheet program to analyze thousands of pieces of data in minutes to discover the links between crimes that often lead to suspects. The International Association of Crime Analysts says the demand for these technical whizzes has risen 10-fold in 15 years.
HOT TRACK SALARIES (AVERAGE) ENTRY LEVEL: $25,000--$29,000 MIDLEVEL: $32,000--$34,000 TOP: $40,000--$48,000
TRAINING. Besides knowing how to put a computer through its paces, analysts often have a grounding in statistics or criminology. Civilians can hold these jobs, but police training gives an edge.
RUNNER-UP HOT TRACK. Bail enforcement agent. A "bounty hunter" typically is hired by bail bondsmen or insurance companies to locate bail jumpers and stolen property. Business promises to be brisk as long as jails and prisons are overcrowded.
WHAT LAW ENFORCEMENT JOBS PAY POLICE OFFICER (ENTRY): $26,581 SPECIAL AGENT, FBI (GS-10): $33,762--$43,888 INTELLIGENCE ANALYST (GS-13): $52,867--$68,729 POLICE CHIEF: $91,700 CRIME LAB DIRECTOR (MAJOR FACILITY): $100,000--$120,000
Note: Average salaries for 1996. Data are for 1993, the latest available, and for cities of 1 million or more.
MEDIA: Interactive Specialist The industry that looks for marriage prospects between telephone, television and computer is about to spawn even more new ways to do everything from shop for clothes to receive news. WebTV, for example, lets couch potatoes dial into the Internet on the TV screen; Gateway 2000's Destination computer lets folks watch their favorite sitcom even as they pull up pertinent Web sites. Experts expect countless jobs for hardware and software designers at firms that manufacture "convergent" technology. Content developers are needed, too: Companies that create the entertainment and other programming will be doing $10 billion in business by the year 2000, up from $500 million last year.