Healthcare jobs are expected to grow the fastest through the next decade, according to a new report released on Thursday.
Total employment is forecast to increase by 10.8 percent, or 15.6 million jobs, between 2012 and 2022, with most of that growth in the service-providing industries, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said.
The healthcare and social assistance sector is projected to grow at an annual rate of 2.6 percent, adding 5 million jobs in the next decade and accounting for nearly one-third of the total increase in jobs.
The growth reflects, in part, the demand for healthcare workers to address the needs of an aging population.
As far as education goes, occupations that typically require a college education are expected, on average, to grow faster than those requiring a high school diploma or less.
All told, 19 of the 30 occupations projected to grow fastest will require some form of post-secondary education.
Those occupations generally had higher median wages ($57,770) in 2012 and are projected to grow faster (14 percent) than occupations that typically require a high school diploma or less ($27,670 and 9.1 percent).
In the next 10 years, the labor force will grow at a slower rate, at about a 0.5 percent clip compared with 0.7 between 2002 and 2012.
The overall labor force participation rate is projected to decline from 63.7 percent in 2012 to 61.6 percent in 2022, continuing the trend from the past decade.
In turn, with the help of the aging baby boom generation, workers ages 55 and older are expected to make up more than 25 percent of the labor force in 2022.
That is expected to mean slower economic growth, too.
Gross domestic product is projected to increase by 2.6 percent annually through 2022, slower than the 3 percent or higher rate often posted through the mid-2000s.
Of the 30 occupations projected to have the largest percentage increase by 2022, 14 are related to healthcare and five are related to construction.
Four major areas are projected to grow more than 20 percent, nearly double the overall growth, from 2012 to 2022: healthcare support occupations (28.1 percent), healthcare practitioners and technical occupations (21.5 percent), construction and extraction occupations (21.4 percent), and personal care and service occupations (20.9 percent).
Employment in construction is projected to grow 2.6 percent a year or by 1.6 million new jobs over the decade, the most among goods-producing sectors and third most among all major industry sectors.
Despite expected fast growth, construction sector employment in 2022 is projected to be below the peak level of 7.7 million in 2006.
Five industry sectors are projected to have decreases in employment: manufacturing (-549,500); federal government (-407,500); agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting (-223,500); information (-65,200); and utilities (-56,400).
Every major occupational group except farming, fishing and forestry occupations is projected to gain jobs through 2022.
Occupations that typically require an apprenticeship are projected to grow 22.2 percent from 2012 to 2022, faster than any other on-the-job training assignment.
While growth will lead to many openings, 67.2 percent are projected to come from replacement needs and are projected to exceed openings from growth.