Finding the highest-paying job is never easy. Only a small percentage of all jobs offer big starting salaries. Plus, competition is fierce. In other words, applying for the top positions means you’re mixing it with the best of the best. And when you’re operating at the elite level, the smallest advantages can often be the difference between failure and success.
The Highest-Paying Jobs In The US
And Resume.io has found a way for you to get that all-important competitive edge. The online resume provider analyzed data from Payscale, dozens of job websites, and LinkedIn to identify the highest-paying jobs with the least (and most) competition.
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There's good news for ambitious law graduates and legal professionals looking to climb the career ladder. Assistant City Attorneys in the US make a very respectable $76,028 a year, with only 1.2 people applying for every position. And it gets even better: there are currently around 62 Assistant City Attorneys jobs advertised across the US. An Administrative Law Judge is the second least competitive job that offers a high salary. It pays $83,000 a year, and you've got a 50/50 chance of landing the job.
The Jobs With The Least Amount Of Competition
The highest paying job with the least amount of competition in the US job market is a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. Being an "NP" comes with a six-figure salary of $108,623 and great health benefits. And just 2.7 people apply for the job. Other well-paid jobs in the US that don't receive many applicants include School Principal, Air Traffic Controller, Fire Chief, and Technical Services Manager. On average, less than 5 people get an interview for these jobs, and salaries range from $75,000-$102,000.
Things get more competitive in the US private sector, especially for executive positions in leading tech and finance companies. Jobs like Chief Operations Officer and Chief Information Officer receive over 100 applications per role. And every candidate will turn up to the interview with a world-class CV listing years of experience at the top level.
Those at the peak of large-scale organizations, like a Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or Vice President of Operations, would have seen off another 135 ambitious and highly qualified applicants during the recruitment process. But while the standards are extremely high, so are the remuneration packages. A President of Operations earns $170,674 per year, while a CEO will take home $155,512. And that's not counting extra benefits like expense accounts, company cars, and maybe even stock options for those directing publicly-traded companies.
Clinical Operation Manager offers the best opportunity to grab a senior management role without having to fend off challenges from a hundred other competitors. 9.4 people apply for advertised positions, and the salary starts at $83,460.
Management and executive roles are slightly less competitive in the UK, but these are still the country's most crowded job sectors. An average of 57.4 people send in applications for every position. But some higher management jobs in the UK attract just three applicants. They include Senior Manager Auditor, Data Science Manager, and Software Development Manager.
The Best Risk/Reward Return
For the best risk/reward return, look at becoming a Data Science Manager. Only 1.6 people make it through to the interview. If successful, you'll start on £70,000 a year. What's more, data science is the 21st-Century's sexiest job, according to Harvard Business Review. Data scientists play a leading role in future industries like AI and automation. And as more companies and services go digital, data scientists will become increasingly in-demand. In fact, Forbes magazine has already called big data the new oil. Some experts think data is now the world's most valuable resource, and it's only a matter of time before the others agree.
Rising demand coupled with skill shortages means the tech sector is full of well-paid job opportunities for those with the right experience. Senior Network Engineers will still be up against another 50 applicants, but there's less competition for entry-level roles, such as IT Consultant and Software Engineer. Plus, the number of candidates applying for every job is offset by the volume of vacant positions. Around 700,000 IT jobs in the US were unfilled in 2019/20.
The Highest-Paying Jobs In The UK
There's a similar situation in the UK. It's struggling to fill 600,000 high-skill tech jobs, costing the UK economy an estimated £63 billion a year. This explains why the UK has 15 IT job titles that attract no more than 10 people for each position. And applicants for Software Development Manager vacancies are often the only candidate being considered. The UK has even introduced a new high-skilled visa scheme and global talent initiative to make its tech sector more competitive. In some cases, skilled workers don't even need a job offer to qualify. The new visas will make the UK one of the most popular destinations for computer scientists, software developers, and coders. Those that arrive first could have the pick of the best jobs.
With the world reopening again after COVID lockdowns, now is the time to launch a new career or take the next step up. Mark Cahill is Managing Director of ManpowerGroup, one of the UK's biggest recruitment firms. He said, "The numbers are moving in the right direction. We're seeing a continued resurgence in sectors like finance and business, giving us reasons to be cheerful as we head into 2021."
So take some risks, aim high, and fine-tune your job search to boost the chance of landing that dream job.