Which occupations are in trouble? We could approach the question from a number of angles. We could ask, “Which occupations have declined the most since 2001?” However, the answer to that particular question will leave out occupations that show overall decline, but have begun to recover. We could ask, “Which occupations show the greatest percentage decline?” but that answer will have the same problem.
For this list we’re looking at the overarching trend while focusing on recent years. First, we’re looking at decline from 2001 to 2010 as well as 2009 to 2010. This helps us to ensure that these occupations are continuing their decline in the most recent data. What we’ve done further is focus on occupations showing net decline at the national level from 2001 to 2010, where 2009 to 2010 decline is a significant portion of that decline.
Note: Click on the top cell of any of the columns to do custom sorting of the following table.
|Description||2001 Jobs||2009 Jobs||2010 Jobs||2001-2010 Change||2009-2010 Change||% of Total Decline From '09-10|
|General and operations managers||1,902,519||1,784,715||1,753,973||-148,546||-30,742||21%|
|Cashiers, except gaming||3,526,974||3,458,484||3,431,583||-95,391||-26,901||28%|
|Truck drivers, light or delivery services||1,118,983||1,058,767||1,039,843||-79,140||-18,924||24%|
|Counter and rental clerks||494,853||430,392||419,730||-75,123||-10,662||14%|
|Sales reps, wholesale and mfg, excpt. tech and sci products||1,560,700||1,502,334||1,490,192||-70,508||-12,142||17%|
|Telecommunications line installers and repairers||237,616||184,670||177,813||-59,803||-6,857||11%|
|Printing machine operators||232,998||180,779||174,456||-58,542||-6,323||11%|
The occupation in this group that shows the most loss is electricians, having shed over 165,000 jobs. This loss of nearly 41,000 from 2009 to 2010 accounts for 25% of the total loss from 2001 to 2010. This is quite a chunk. Carpenters, though, show 66% percent of that decline happening since 2009, the most extreme deepening of the decline we have on the list. In fact from 2001 to 2009 we have a job loss of about 48,000 jobs for carpenters, lower than printing machine operators, who show the smallest loss on the list.
Of course, loss for electricians and carpenters stems directly from the housing crisis, and the current dismal state of construction in general. In fact, if we look at the top industries in which these occupations are staffed (using Analyst’s inverse staffing pattern report), we find that nonresidential electrical contractors have lost more electricians than any other industry, 22,074. The inverse staffing pattern also shows that new single-family housing construction has lost 16,596 carpenters.
At any rate, there’s the list of the top 10 occupations that suffered the most since 2001, and particularly suffered from 2009 to 2010. It should be noted that depending on the region, of course, some of these occupations might be doing quite well. The outlook also changes when factoring in replacement jobs.
We’re going to continue to look at other occupations showing drastic shifts, so keep an eye out.