Top 5 Most Underrated Careers of 2014

The Stephen Kings and Don Drapers of the world are pretty rare. Advertising executives don’t have the time for impromptu trips to fabulous locations or to gently hatch catchy slogans for weeks on end, and publishers aren’t lining up to read your next hot novel. Also, lawyers mostly don’t look like Lucy Liu.

A new study from—a California-based job search portal specializing in niche job markets and niche job seekers—bears this out.

Even though we tend to glamorize the jobs of lawyers, executives, writers, and even event planners, the reality is much different. Advertising is high stress and high turnover, and if you’re looking for work in that field, good luck. You’ve got a one percent chance of getting hired between now and 2022, according to CareerCast.

Writers are pretty much perpetually out of work (with a three percent chance of getting hired in the next eight years). Other “glamorous” jobs like public relations are also not what they appear at first glance.

CareerCast looked at the latest statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and factored in things like salary, growth potential, stress, and the opportunity to make a difference. It then compared those metrics against what society perceives as the most desirable jobs.

Conversely, the study found jobs that are often perceived as unglamorous, boring, and geeky have the best outlooks and promise the most rewarding careers. Many of these jobs are in the STEM (science, engineering, technology, and math) fields.

Here are 2014’s most underrated jobs:

Accountant. Accountants fare well in the hiring landscape, and those in the field have flexibility in their career paths. The increased focus on accounting in response to corporate scandals, financial crises and continued globalization of business is expected to lead to a steady demand for competent accountants in the upcoming years.

Civil Engineer. A competitive average salary of $79,340 and an excellent work environment make this a good career choice, and with the increases in infrastructure-related construction—it’s estimated that there are seventy-thousand bridges in America that are structurally deficient—demand for civil engineers is set to grow rapidly.

Computer Systems Analyst. Employment of computer systems analysts is projected to grow 25 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for most occupations. Growth in cloud computing, the Internet of Things (IoT), cybersecurity, and mobile networks will increase demand for these workers. This field requires both IT acumen and business savvy, making those who work in it indispensable and highly sought after.

Environmental Engineer. Demand in this field is projected to grow rapidly (15 percent over the coming years) as governments seek to lessen the impact of large-scale building projects and water shortages, for instance.

Geologist. Well paid with an average annual salary of $90,890, geologists will prove vital to the booming energy industry, specially in light of new mining techniques.

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