What Are the Most In-Demand Careers in New York?

In-demand careers in New York include positions in healthcare, transportation, sales, and administration. Learn about salaries and qualifications.

portrait of Marisa Upson
by Marisa Upson

Published on May 20, 2022 · Updated on May 26, 2022

Edited by Kristina Beek
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What Are the Most In-Demand Careers in New York?
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New York boasts the top spot as the most visited state in the nation by foreign travelers. It's a state that embraces diversity, with immigrants making up almost one-quarter of its population. People flock to New York City for its entertainment, impressive landmarks, and wealth of museums and art galleries.

Of course, living and working in a place is far different than visiting. The good news for would-be New Yorkers: In 2021, New York and California tied for the states with the most Fortune 500 companies. Additionally, the unemployment rate dropped to 4.6% in March 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

On the downside, the cost of living in New York ranks well above the national average, surpassed only by Hawaii and Washington, D.C. Keep in mind that New York encompasses over 54,500 miles. While one of the highest-paying jobs in New York may make it easier to live in New York City, there are many other cities, towns, and suburbs to call home.

New York Career Outlook

According to the BLS, New York saw one of the largest job gains in the country in March 2022, second only to California. As of May 2021, over 8.6 million people were employed in New York, with some of the top employers in business and financial services, education, healthcare, sales, and office and administrative support.

The New York State Department of Labor reports the average weekly wage in New York came to about $1,690 in 2021. A few occupations projected to increase by more than 25% from 2018-2028 include education administrators, medical and health service managers, social and community service managers, information security analysts, and physician assistants.

When MoneyGeek analyzed the top U.S. cities for job seekers in 2021, the two New York cities to make the list were Buffalo-Cheektowaga and Rochester.

Top 10 Fastest-Growing Careers in New York

Registered Nurse

Average Annual Salary: $93,320 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: 9% projected employment growth (nationwide)

As of May 2021, New York employed about 188,300 registered nurses (RNs). These nurses work in various healthcare settings, conducting patient assessments and coordinating patient care. While there are many reasons to become a nurse, many seek out this profession due to a desire to help others.

In February 2022, New York legislators proposed a bill to address the critical nursing shortage. It provides incentives to pursue nursing careers, such as scholarships and loan forgiveness. In New York, prospective RNs must earn an associate or bachelor's degree in nursing, pass the NCLRX-RN exam, and gain state licensure.

In 2017, the state passed a law requiring all RNs to earn their bachelor's degree within 10 years of their initial licensure. Earning a master's in nursing may lead to increased earning potential.


Real Estate Agent

Average Annual Salary: $81,020 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: 4% projected job growth (nationwide)

Real estate agents work under the supervision of a licensed real estate broker, representing buyers or sellers in property transactions. Success in this field requires tenacity, a personable disposition, and an understanding of the local market. Real estate agents in New York boast some of the top pay out of all real estate agents in the U.S.

In New York, real estate agents must obtain licensure by completing a state-approved 75-hour real estate sales course, passing a state exam, and gaining sponsorship from a licensed real estate broker. Some go on to pursue a bachelor's degree in real estate. Earning an online master's in real estate may offer even greater opportunities.


Administrative Assistant

Median Annual Salary: $44,570 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: -7% projected job growth (nationwide)

Administrative assistants work in almost every industry, with healthcare and social assistance the number one employer. These professionals perform clerical and organizational tasks, like answering phones, scheduling appointments, and performing basic bookkeeping.

Administrative assistants in New York boast some of the highest salaries in the nation for this occupation. For example, executive administrative assistants in New York earn average yearly wages of $79,560. Earning an online associate in administrative assistant can help prepare graduates for these specialized areas. Despite declining employment, the BLS projects about 324,300 job openings in the U.S. each year from 2020-2030.


Transportation and Storage Associate

Average Annual Salary: $43,800
2018-2028 Job Outlook: 56.5% projected job growth

Transportation and warehouse associates coordinate the storage and transportation of products and materials. They may prepare and track shipments, maintain records, and perform warehouse duties. These associates may work in one of the many major New York distribution centers for companies like Home Depot, Tractor Supply Company, and DICK's Sporting Goods.

The New York State Department of Labor Division of Research and Statistics projects a 56.5% job growth in the transportation and warehousing industry from 2018-2028. This growth is much faster than the statewide industry average of 10.4%. This position requires excellent organizational skills and acute attention to detail. Qualifications vary by employer.


Retail Manager

Average Annual Salary: $64,060 (New York, as of May 2022)
2018-2028 Job Outlook: -8% projected job growth (New York)

New York City offers one of the highest salaries for retail managers who supervise staff and store operations. Some typical duties include training employees, controlling budgets, and managing purchases. This position requires strong communication and interpersonal skills and the desire to work in a fast-paced environment. Some positions require a bachelor's in retail management or business administration.

Pre-pandemic, 32,600 businesses made up New York City's retail sector and provided 344,600 jobs. Additionally, as a premier shopping destination, retail accounts for almost 9% of private-sector employment. Retail includes clothing, food and beverage, and general merchandise stores.


Home Health Aide

Average Annual Salary: $33,520 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: 33% projected job growth (nationwide)

New York employs 478,620 home health and personal care aides as of May 2021, making this the number one job in the state. A survey conducted by the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Association of New York State found that 74% of people with disabilities and older adults could not retain these workers in 2021.

These professionals assist older adults and people with chronic illnesses or disabilities, helping them live independently. They may assist with daily living activities, perform light housekeeping, and provide companionship. This profession requires empathy, patience, dependability, and physical stamina. Home health aides in New York must complete a 75-hour state-approved training program that leads to certification.


Direct Support Professional

Median Annual Salary: $29,430 (nationwide)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: 33% projected job growth (nationwide)

Direct support professionals (DSPs) help teach people with disabilities how to live more independent lives. They may assist with home care, education, hygiene, and transportation. While a home health aide performs tasks for their clients, DSPs focus on helping them learn to do things on their own.

People with deep compassion that want to make a difference in the lives of those with intellectual or developmental disabilities may find this a rewarding career. DSPs must pass a criminal background check and hold a high school diploma or GED certificate and a valid New York driver's license. Additional requirements include passing a physical examination and meeting physical and agility standards.


Nursing Assistant

Average Annual Salary:$40,680 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: 8% projected job growth (nationwide)

Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) support patients with daily tasks and basic care, like dressing, eating, bathing, and transferring from beds to wheelchairs. According to the New York Department of Health, nursing assistants provide more than 90% of the hands-on care received by residents in nursing homes. New York also offers one of the highest salaries for CNAs.

Also called nurse aides, these professionals must complete a state-approved nursing assistant training program and pass a certification exam. CNA to RN bridge programs can help CNAs gain the necessary skills and qualifications to become RNs. Like other direct care workers, this position requires patience, empathy, and compassion.


Sales Representative

Average Annual Salary: $78,440 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: 5% projected job growth (nationwide)

Sales representatives sell goods or services for a company, including manufacturers and wholesalers. In New York, sales representatives that sell technical and scientific products earn some of the highest pay, with average annual earnings of $114,870. Becoming a tech sales representative may require at least two years of postsecondary education in some positions.

Success in this profession requires strong listening and communication skills, the art of persuasion, and a persistent personality. These professionals identify prospective clients and discuss a product or service's features and how they address a customer's pain points. Some sales reps travel considerably.


Customer Service Representative

Average Annual Salary: $45,410 (New York)
2020-2030 Job Outlook: -1% projected job growth (nationwide)

New York employs about 140,820 customer service representatives as of May 2021 and pays them well above the national average for this occupation of $39,070. These professionals are employed in almost every industry, processing customers' orders and responding to questions and complaints. While automation may impact demand, business support services, like telephone call centers, are projected to grow as businesses consolidate.

These professionals require precise communication and problem-solving skills, as well as patience and emotional intelligence. This position typically requires a high school diploma or GED certificate, with new employees receiving on-the-job training.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Most In-Demand Careers in New York

What jobs are the highest-paying in New York? true

New York job seekers find some of the highest-paying roles in management. A few top-paying positions as of May 2021 include marketing ($190,760), computer and information systems ($195,900), financial ($206,990), and human resource managers($180,380).

In the business and financial sector, personal financial advisors earn some of the highest pay, with average earnings of $158,040. In computer and mathematical occupations, information security analysts boast high earnings, with average wages of $133,210. Other top earners include lawyers ($179,060), art directors ($143,080), and nurse anesthetists ($225,180).

Is it easy to get a job in New York? true

>Like any place, the ease with which one finds a job depends on experience, educational level, and demand. In New York, some of the top industries with high demand include warehousing and storage, administrative and support services, education, and healthcare jobs.

Transportation and storage associates, home health aides, and direct support professionals find some of the greatest demand. Because of the high need, New York may provide access to free training and certification. According to the New York Post, additional popular employment opportunities include tech jobs, human resource positions, and account management and sales opportunities.

What city in New York has the most jobs? true

Of the over 19 million people that make New York their home, more than 8 million live in New York City. Of course, while it's safe to say that New York City has the most jobs, the Big Apple isn't for everybody.

The next two largest cities, Buffalo and Rochester, pale in comparison, with populations in the 200,000-250,000 range. These cities were the only two in New York to rank in MoneyGeek's top U.S. cities for job seekers in 2021.

How do I get a job in New York?

Finding a job in New York can feel overwhelming, particularly if you're landing your first job after college. Fortunately, whether you're finding a job as a recent college graduate or entering the New York workforce with little experience, sticking to a few proven job search steps can help you secure a position.

New York offers a wealth of job search support. For example, as the largest municipal government in the U.S., New York City employs more than 325,000 workers. The New York State employment services includes JobZone, a career development and job search tool, and employment opportunities for many other fields, including DSPs and mental health.

What are the most popular entry-level jobs in New York?

For recent college grads or those just entering the workforce, entry-level jobs offer a place to learn, grow, and start determining their career path. The hospitality, transportation, healthcare support, customer service, and office administration sectors offer some of the most popular entry-level jobs in New York.

Additionally, make sure to research a company's culture and reputation. As home to some of the top companies in the nation, such as ADP, Google, Verizon, and IBM, New York may offer great employment and career opportunities.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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