LinkedIn Data Reveals the Most Promising Jobs and In-Demand Skills of 2018

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As we enter 2018 it’s become clear that the jobs landscape in the United States is changing. How people are thinking about their careers and how they define success is changing. The rise of technology across every industry has created a flurry of new jobs and associated skills (and these aren’t necessarily all tech roles). While we all may take a different approach to reach our own definition of success, we’ve compiled a list of the most promising jobs and in-demand skills, plus a few stand-out trends, to help you get there.

The Trends

  • You don’t need to be technical to be successful. Despite the prominence of technical jobs and skills, soft skills like management, leadership, and strategy are equally as important. The proof is in the data: we surveyed 2,000 business leaders who told us the soft skills most in-demand are leadership, communication, collaboration, and time management. In fact, 57% of them said these soft skills are more important than hard skills.

  • Customer is king. As we saw in our Emerging Jobs Report, as a side effect of the technology boom, customer success, marketing, and sales-related jobs are growing quickly. Reaching potential customers and ensuring current customers are successful with your product are both critical for business success.

  • Technology is here to stay. Year-over-year technology jobs and skills have dominated these lists, and that’s a trend that’s likely here to stay. All jobs are likely going to require some technical skills in the future, so make sure to brush up on the basics.

The Most Promising Jobs

This list highlights the jobs with high median salaries, strong job openings and year-over-year growth, and the jobs most likely to lead to a promotion or advancement within an organization, as well as the top 5 skills associated with each.

1. Engagement Lead

Median Base Salary: $93,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 1,200+ (425%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 10

Top Skills: ManagementLeadershipProject ManagementStrategyCommunication

2. Software Engineering Manager

Median Total Salary: $148,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 1,100+ (38%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 8

Top Skills: Software DevelopmentAgile MethodologiesManagementJavaSQL

3. Customer Success Manager

Median Total Salary: $82,300

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 1,000+ (91%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 10

Top Skills: ManagementSalesCustomer ServiceLeadershipCustomer Relationship Management

4. Solutions Architect

Median Total Salary: $134,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 2,000+ (28%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 6

Top Skills: ManagementIntegrationSolution ArchitectureDesignProject Management

5. Sales Director

Median Base Salary: $145,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 2,000+ (31%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 6

Top Skills: SalesManagementBusiness DevelopmentAccount ManagementMarketing

6. Engineering Manager

Median Base Salary: $130,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 1,400+ (42%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 6

Top Skills: EngineeringProject ManagementManagementManufacturingDesign

7. Program Manager

Median Base Salary: $100,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 4,500+ (25%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 8

Top Skills: ManagementProject ManagementProgram ManagementLeadershipTraining

8. Product Manager

Median Base Salary: $105,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 3,600+ (30%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 8

Top Skills: ManagementProduct ManagementProgram ManagementMarketingProduct Development

9. Data Scientist

Median Base Salary: $113,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 2,100+ (45%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 8

Top Skills: PythonData AnalysisMachine LearningSQLStatistics

10. Enterprise Account Manager

Median Base Salary: $180,000

Job Openings (YoY Growth): 800+ (74%)

Career Advancement Score (out of 10): 8

Top Skills: SalesManagementAccount ManagementSolution SellingBusiness Development

To view the full list of top 20 Most Promising Jobs in the U.S. head over to our Jobs blog.

The Skills Companies Need Most

We also took a look at the most in-demand skills of 2018 to help you get an idea of what companies are looking for. If any of these skills speak to your strengths, make sure to add them to your LinkedIn Profile. If you see a skill that you’ve had on your list to work on more or even master, be sure to carve out a bit of time to learn it.

  1. Cloud and Distributed Computing

  2. Statistical Analysis and Data Mining

  3. Middleware and Integration Software

  4. Web Architecture and Development Framework

  5. User Interface Design

  6. Software Revision Control Systems

  7. Data Presentation

  8. SEO/SEM Marketing

  9. Mobile Development

  10. Network and Information Security

Check out the full list of hard and soft skills, and associated LinkedIn Learning classes here.

Most Promising Jobs Methodology

To determine the best jobs for career opportunity, we combined data from millions of LinkedIn member profiles, job openings, and salaries. We started by grouping the millions of unique, raw job titles inputted on member profiles and job listings (which have many permutations) based on common job roles. For example, the “Product Manager” job role reflects both members who list an active position as “Product Manager - Retail," as well as any job openings with the title “Product Manager, III.”

We then ranked each job using a weighted score based on five components: salary, career advancement, number of job openings in the U.S., year-over-year growth in job openings, and widespread regional availability. The results represent jobs that had the highest combined score across these five areas.

About the measures and weights for each component:

  • Salary (30%) - The median base annual salary for all job roles that have at least 40 entries collected in LinkedIn Salary in the U.S.

  • Career advancement score (25%) -  Job roles most likely to lead to a promotion or internal transfer, based on the percentage of members employed at the end of 2016 who then started a new position at the same company during 2017.

  • Job openings (20%) - The raw number of current job openings for each job role.

  • Job openings YoY growth (15%) - The year-over-year growth in job postings for each job role from 2016 to 2017, based on the percentage change in average daily openings. We only considered roles that had growth YoY.

  • Regional availability (10%) - The number of regions in the U.S. currently hiring for each job role.

Top Hard Skills Methodology

There are thousands of skills that members can add to their profiles, so we grouped these skills into several dozen categories. For example, skills like “Android” and “iOS” would fit into the “Mobile Development” category. Then we looked at all of the hiring and recruiting activity that happened on LinkedIn between Jan. 1 and Sept. 1, equaling billions of data points, and identified the skill categories that belonged to members who were more likely to start a new role within a company and receive interest from companies. Skill categories that did not meet a specific threshold for membership were excluded from our analysis.

SOURCE: LinkedIn Blog