Best jobs and best-paying cities 2019

WASHINGTON — There are jobs, good jobs and then the best jobs. According to a new study, some of those fabled best (as well as best-paying) are in the D.C. area.

With the government shutdown making life increasingly difficult for federal workers, to the extent that many are seeking unemployment benefits, those with jobs are happy for a regular paycheck.

There’s good news for those looking for new jobs as well.

“We are nearly 10 years after the end of the Great Recession, and the job market is really doing wonders for workers,” Rebecca Koenig, careers reporter at U.S. News & World Report, told WTOP.

Wages are even starting to rise slightly, Koenig said, which is the first time in a long time economists have seen that.

Here are the Best Jobs in the District, and how much employees could make:

  • Accountant ($93,900)
  • Anthropologist ($89,760)
  • Archaeologist ($89,760)
  • Bookkeeping accounting and audit clerk ($50,000)
  • Cartographer ($88,930)
  • Choreographer ($60,640)
  • Community health worker ($63,650)
  • Database administrator ($105,070)
  • Industrial psychologist ($125,830)
  • Interpreter and translator ($71,850)
  • Mathematician ($140,720)
  • Ophthalmic medical technician ($53,890)
  • Oral and maxillofacial surgeon ($284,060)
  • Paralegal ($72,010)
  • Petroleum engineer ($161,870)
  • Political scientist ($119,280)
  • Public relations specialist ($100,120)
  • Social and community service manager ($101,590)
  • Web developer ($93,170)

Silver Spring, Maryland, also ranked highly on U.S. News’ report:

  • Cartographer ($93,430)
  • Chiropractor ($189,260)
  • Computer systems administrator ($105,500)
  • Epidemiologist/medical scientist ($113,000)
  • Executive assistant ($73,530)
  • Health educator ($101,500)
  • Interpreter and translator ($79,510)
  • Mathematician ($136,540)
  • Orthodontist ($253,540)
  • Podiatrist ($239,510)
  • Software developer ($126,260)
  • Statistician ($113,320)
  • Survey researcher ($90,950)

So what and where are the rest of the best jobs as the American workforce heads into 2019? (Before you ask, no, journalism jobs didn’t make the list.)

See the best jobs and best-paying cities below.

Programmer working in a software developing company office
For the second year in a row, software developer took the No. 1 spot on U.S. News’ 100 Best Jobs list. See the full list of best jobs on U.S. News’ website. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/nd3000) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/nd3000)
Close up of businessman's hands. He is holding clipboard and checking the data at blue graph. Concept of statistician's work
Statistician was No. 2 on U.S. News’ 100 Best Jobs list. See the full list of best jobs on U.S. News’ website. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/ismagilov) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/ismagilov)
Doctors use the computer, concept of medical consulting
Physician assistant was No. 3 on U.S. News’ 100 Best Jobs list. See the full list of best jobs on U.S. News’ website. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Visivasnc) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Visivasnc)
Senior male dentist in dental office talking with female patient and preparing for treatment.
Dentist came in at No. 4 on U.S. News’ 100 Best Jobs list. See the full list of best jobs on U.S. News’ website. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/SolisImages) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/SolisImages)
Portrait of female dentist .She standing in her dentist office..
Orthodontist and nurse anesthetist were tied for No. 5 on U.S. News & World Report’s 100 Best Jobs list. See the full list of best jobs on U.S. News’ website. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/SolisImages) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/SolisImages)
San Francisco Skyline with Dramatic Clouds at Sunrise, California, USA
U.S. News also calculated the best-paying cities for their 100 Best Jobs list of 2019 using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and compiling which cities have the most jobs associated to them from the best-jobs list. Coming in at No. 1 is San Francisco, California, with 81 of the 100-best jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/heyengel) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/heyengel)
Drone photo of sunset over downtown San Jose in California
No. 2: San Jose, California, with 55 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/SpVVK) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/SpVVK)
New York City, USA skyline on the East River with Brooklyn Bridge at dusk. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Sean Pavone)
No. 3: New York City, with 28 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Sean Pavone) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Sean Pavone)
Perry Memorial Arch in Seaside Park of Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA.
No. 4: Bridgeport, Connecticut, with 23 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/xxcheng) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/xxcheng)
Oakland, Alameda County, California, USA.
No. 5: Oakland, California with 23 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/yhelfman) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/yhelfman)
Magenta dusk shot of the Richmond-San Rafael bridge, as seen from Pt. Molate Beach in Richmond, CA, USA.
No. 6: San Rafael, California, with 23 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/ENTphotography) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/ENTphotography)
Aerial view of the city of Nassau, USA
No. 7: Nassau County, New York, with 20 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/alarico) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/alarico)
City of Fairbanks in Alaska at night
No. 8: Fairbanks, Alaska, with 19 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/DMartinez-Photo) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/DMartinez-Photo)
Here is the token nighttime long exposure shot of the U.S. Capital building in Washington D.C.
No. 9: Washington, D.C. with 19 jobs. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Jesse Stafford) (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Jesse Stafford)
In this Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, photo, pickup trucks run between farmlands and residential areas in Salinas, Calif. Salinas is an affordable location compared to Silicon Valley, where median home prices are about $1 million, but with a less-wealthy population and a median home price that has ballooned to about $550,000, it's one of the least affordable places in America. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
No. 10: Salinas, California, with 17 jobs. (AP/Jae C. Hong)
(1/15)
Programmer working in a software developing company office
Close up of businessman's hands. He is holding clipboard and checking the data at blue graph. Concept of statistician's work
Doctors use the computer, concept of medical consulting
Senior male dentist in dental office talking with female patient and preparing for treatment.
Portrait of female dentist .She standing in her dentist office..
San Francisco Skyline with Dramatic Clouds at Sunrise, California, USA
Drone photo of sunset over downtown San Jose in California
New York City, USA skyline on the East River with Brooklyn Bridge at dusk. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Sean Pavone)
Perry Memorial Arch in Seaside Park of Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA.
Oakland, Alameda County, California, USA.
Magenta dusk shot of the Richmond-San Rafael bridge, as seen from Pt. Molate Beach in Richmond, CA, USA.
Aerial view of the city of Nassau, USA
City of Fairbanks in Alaska at night
Here is the token nighttime long exposure shot of the U.S. Capital building in Washington D.C.
In this Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, photo, pickup trucks run between farmlands and residential areas in Salinas, Calif. Salinas is an affordable location compared to Silicon Valley, where median home prices are about $1 million, but with a less-wealthy population and a median home price that has ballooned to about $550,000, it's one of the least affordable places in America. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

The top 20 cities for the best jobs are:

  • 1. San Francisco, California – 81 jobs
  • 2. San Jose, California – 55 jobs
  • 3. New York, New York – 28 jobs
  • 4. Bridgeport, Connecticut – 23 jobs
  • 5. Oakland, California – 23 jobs
  • 6. San Rafael, California – 23 jobs
  • 7. Nassau County, New York – 20 jobs
  • 8. Fairbanks, Alaska – 19 jobs
  • 9. Washington, District of Columbia – 19 jobs
  • 10. Salinas, California – 17 jobs
  • 11. Anchorage, Alaska – 14 jobs
  • 12. Newark, New Jersey – 14 jobs
  • 13. Vallejo, California – 14 jobs
  • 14. Silver Spring, Maryland – 13 jobs
  • 15. Urban Honolulu, Hawaii – 13 jobs
  • 16. Boston, Massachusetts – 11 jobs
  • 17. Seattle, Washington – 11 jobs
  • 18. Kahului, Hawaii – 10 jobs
  • 19. Oxnard, California – 10 jobs
  • 20. Sacramento, California – 10 jobs

Get the massive list of all the best-paying jobs by city. (Excel spreadsheet)

U.S. News also calculated the best-paying jobs, the best health care jobs and the best business jobs.

Best-paying jobs

  • 1. Anesthesiologist
  • 2. Surgeon
  • 3. Oral and maxillofacial surgeon
  • 4. Obstetrician and gynecologist
  • 5. Orthodontist

Best health care jobs

  • 1. Physician assistant
  • 2. Dentist
  • 3. Orthodontist
  • 4. Nurse anesthetist
  • 5. Nurse practitioner

Best business jobs

  • 1. Statistician
  • 2. Mathematician
  • 3. Accountant
  • 4. Financial manager
  • 5. Medical and health services manager


Jobs in demand

According to the report, more and more people are looking for jobs that require less school time and tuition. Trends point to them seeking out gigs as nurse practitioners, anesthesiologists and physician assistants — not doctors or surgeons.

“Health care occupations continue to dominate the U.S. News 2019 Best Jobs rankings, with demand in the field highest for workers to fill roles such as nurse practitioner, physician assistant and physical therapist,” Koenig said in the report.

“That’s good news for students and career changers, because it takes less school time and tuition money to prepare for those positions than it does to become a physician or surgeon.”

Koenig told WTOP that one of the big reasons for that, as a source told her, is because health care is “pretty recession-proof.”

“We’re always going to need people to take care of us medically,” Koenig said.

What companies want

Companies are focused more on hiring workers who they can train rather than finding the “perfect candidate,” giving more room for gig workers and freelancers.

That said, Koenig told WTOP that the Best Jobs list might inspire long-time freelancers to “go back and get a credential or to apply for a more permanent, full-time position, if that interests them instead of maintaining their freelance lifestyle.”

With an overwhelming need for labor, companies have started relaxing their standards and expediting their hiring processes, giving workers the upper hand in the job market, according to the report.

“Maybe we’re finally getting to that point where demand for labor and supply of labor have met,” said Andy Challenger, vice president of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, an executive outplacement firm. “Wages hopefully will begin to rise at a quicker pace.”

What makes jobs attractive

In order to lure and retain workers, companies are also increasing the benefits they offer, including flexible hours and remote work opportunities.

And they’re “investing in individuals’ personal and professional development,” said Kim Castro, executive editor at U.S. News & World Report.

“Perks are happening more and more,” said Dawn Fay, senior district president at Robert Half human resources consulting firm. “Many people are changing their office space to be more attractive for workers. There are gym memberships and snacks in the office.”

Keonig elaborated: “I am hearing from recruiters all over that this is really a great time for people hoping to boost their benefits, either at their current job or at a new employer because they are considering things like paying for you to go back and get a degree, boosting your vacation opportunities, chances for you to work remotely.”

When it comes to choosing the job you want, Koenig said career coaches have some advice.

“[They] recommend figuring out what kind of salary you need to live the kind of lifestyle that you want, or that your family needs to maintain, though if you really do need to make $50,000 a year, you shouldn’t be considering jobs that tend to pay much less than that,” Koenig told WTOP.

“It just won’t sustain you.”

Still, she said there are lots of factors when it comes to finding the right fit.

“Before you apply for a job, find people who work there, or used to work there, and ask for an informational interview,” Koenig said. “Ask them what they like about the culture, what they didn’t like.”

And be sure to take into account those stress levels and work-life balance.

See the full list of best jobs on U.S. News’ website.

WTOP’s Kristi King contributed to this story.

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