5 Growing Job Markets During COVID-19

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Many individuals have found themselves out of work during COVID-19. However, some sectors and jobs are experiencing continued growth and demand for workers. Here are five job markets that have expanded during the pandemic and will most likely continue to expand over the next five years.


Before the pandemic began, registered nurses (and other medical professionals) were in high demand. For years, there’s been a demand that’s outpaced the number of nurses. The Bureau of Labor Services anticipates that RN jobs will increase 12% over a ten year period (2018-2028).

There are many different types of nurses, whether you’re considering the specialty of nursing, such as pediatric, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), or ER, or the location where someone works, such as doctor’s office, home health care, travel nursing, or hospital. Travel nursing offers a way to explore the world (when there isn’t a pandemic) and to earn a high salary (during the pandemic). At the beginning of the pandemic, in hotspots such as New York City, nurses.org reported that some nurses (and respiratory therapists) were earning on average $10,000 per week.

CNC Machining

In order to continue to meet the increased consumer demands, the CNC machining industry has grown exponentially over the past 30 years. CNC stands for Computer Numerically Controlled and means that the machine is what actually cuts away material based on code that’s been input into a computer. Much of what you buy has been touched by CNC machining in some way. CNC machines are used to manufacture components for aerospace, HVAC, refrigeration, electronics, medical devices, and many other items. Operating, programming, or engineering a CNC machine are in incredibly high demand, and that’s not expected to change any time soon.

COVID-19 and its impact on the global supply chain, from factory floors to shipping to sourcing, has had serious ramifications on manufacturing. It’s accelerated the reshoring process that had started. Hitachi predicts that it will continue to be a trend throughout 2021, as more manufacturers anticipate how to respond to future global crises similar to COVID-19.

The desire to safeguard the supply chain will mean more manufacturing—and more CNC machining professional—jobs in a market that already cannot meet the demand. With the increased demand, and the still-depleted job market, CNC professionals can essentially walk into any factory that uses CNC machining tools, whether lathes, mills, or another type, and find a job.

Regardless of where in the United States you want to live, as a CNC machining professional, you have a range of states to choose from. With the shortage of qualified workers and the increased reshoring as a result of COVID-19, CNC machining is a job of the future—and today.

Cleaning Services

As the pandemic continues, the businesses that remain open have ramped up the amount of cleaning that they do. According to ZipRecruiter, there’s been a 75% increase in job listings for janitors and cleaning services. Even when enough people receive the vaccine that we have herd immunity, businesses won’t return to old cleaning standards. The potential for other viruses or diseases remains high, and restaurants and stores will want to advertise the cleanliness of their facilities.

If you’re entrepreneurial, consider starting your own cleaning service. You can clean homes or businesses. Plenty of parents who’ve been home for 9 months with their kids are tired of cleaning up after their kids and would welcome the help. Plus, with folks at home so much more, houses are dirtier than ever. Cleaning rates can range from $12-$20 per hour, depending on where you live and work.

Grocery Stores

Grocery stores are one of the few retail environments that have stayed open throughout the course of COVID-19. Many grocery stores, such as Kroger, Aldi, Safeway, and Costco continue to hire, even 9 months into the pandemic. With so many families and workers still staying home, the demand for food and other grocery items has skyrocketed. Some Americans shop and stockpile for weeks at a time, whereas others frequent grocery stores more regularly. The demand has also risen as many people cook from home, rather than going out to eat at a restaurant. Grocery stores often hire associates for jobs that range from cashier, to shelf stocking, to managers. Occasionally, a grocery store even has its own delivery service and needs drivers. (like Peapod!) Many grocery stores offer great benefits to their workers, and starting salaries often begin on average around $10/hour and can go as high as $23.


Although this job requires slightly more education than some of the others, the need for trained therapists or other mental health professionals will probably continue for a long time. Once COVID-19 is under control, the use of therapists may even increase more, as the ongoing trauma of the pandemic eases up and people begin to deal with the fallout.

Over 300,000 people across the United States have died from COVID-19, and there are millions of Americans who have lost their jobs. Many marriages have felt strain unlike anything ever experienced, as couples quarantined at home for months at a time. Children have experienced schooling in a new way, often a less-effective way. As stressors increase and people begin to process their grief and their losses, the need for skilled mental health workers who can assist them in the process will grow, too.

Although the end of the pandemic is on the horizon, it’s uncertain when life will actually return to normal. Some experts anticipate it’ll take until summer 2021 for the United States to achieve herd immunity. Other experts expect that it won’t be for another two years before we return to living as we knew it before the pandemic. Regardless of how long the pandemic lasts, though, its effects will continue to resonate for a significant amount of time. Job markets will continue to feel its effects, too. Whether you’re looking for a new career or you lost your job and need another, consider the five markets above.