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Alabama Job Outlook: Overview of the Fastest Growing Careers

Searching for a new job in Alabama? Consider seeking employment in one of the state's rapidly growing fields, which include retail, food service and nursing. Read on to learn more about the fastest-growing careers in Alabama.

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Alabama's Fastest-Growing Careers

Job hunting can be a challenge in today's struggling labor market. With national unemployment rates just over nine percent and Alabama's unemployment rate at 9.6%, the availability of jobs is an important consideration for individuals seeking new careers.

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) collects data on the most in-demand occupations in each region. Their tables are based on current annual job openings and projected growth between 2008 and 2018. The top ten fastest-growing careers in Alabama are:

Profession Projected Need for Employees 2008 - 2018 Percentage Growth
Retail salespeople 9,910 9%-17%
Food preparation & service workers 9,140 18%-26%
Registered nurses (RNs) 8,290 9%-17%
Team assemblers 7,780 18%-26%
Customer service reps 5,390 18%-26%
Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers 4,860 9%-17%
Office clerks 4,550 9%-17%
Waiters and waitresses 4,360 9%-17%
Cleaners & janitors, except household maids 4,310 9%-17%
Accounting, auditing and bookkeeping clerks 4,240 9%-17%

Source: America's Career InfoNet from the DOL (

All of the above careers are in industries that are growing relatively quickly throughout the U.S. These include hospitality, retail, healthcare, business administration, financial services and advanced manufacturing.

Which Career Is Right For You?

Although job availability is an important part of identifying a new career path, it isn't the only factor that you should consider. In addition to your personal interests and skills, you may also want to think about training requirements and potential earnings. This information is available from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Profession Typical Required Training Average Salary in 2010
Retail salespeople On the job $25,000
Food preparation & service workers On the job $18,610
Registered nurses (RNs) Associate's degree $67,720
Team assemblers On the job $29,220
Customer service reps On the job $32,780
Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers On the job $39,450
Office clerks High school diploma, basic computer skills $28,240
Waiters and waitresses On the job $20,790
Cleaners & janitors, except household maids On the job $24,560
Accounting, auditing and bookkeeping clerks On the job $35,340

Source: BLS (

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