3 Reasons Why New Collar Jobs are the Future of Hiring

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Historically, colleges weren’t meant for people to acquire hard skills; the very first high education institutions provided mostly theoretical knowledge and their main purpose was to build the future leaders of the community. Meanwhile, practical skills were learned through apprenticeships, on-the-job training, and by shadowing experienced professionals. This all worked out well for a while, but as times changed, so did the needs of the labor market.

Today’s job market and the current economy call for professionals who can work with both their heads as well as their hands. As a result, nowadays, having a 4-year degree is no longer enough to keep people professionally competitive or to help companies fill their skill gap. Here’s where new collar jobs find their niche.

Why New Collar Jobs?

New collar jobs combine both hard skills and soft skills that aren’t necessarily acquired through a bachelor’s degree alone. In other words, these type of jobs require the sort of abilities that are not only taught through a formal education, but that can also be learned through alternative educational paths such as vocational training programs and certifications. Positions like front-end developer, medical assistant, financial sales advisor, and maintenance manager are just a few examples of today’s professions that fall somewhere in between technical skills and theoretical knowledge.

But this isn’t the only reason why new collar jobs are more than likely to become the solution of the new recruitment era’s skill shortage. Even though they won’t replace blue or white-collar workers, these types of jobs are a practical addition to the rising new positions that technological evolution has brought to the recruitment scene. But how?

Here are some ways new collar jobs are helping fill the job market gap:

As we mentioned earlier, today’s companies are in need of a workforce that not only can combine basic knowledge with specific technical skills, but that understands the importance of constantly developing new abilities. For HR experts and managers, new collar jobs represent an alternative for those very specialized positions in fields that are suffering from a shortage of skilled talent (such as IT and manufacturing) and that require the kind of practical abilities that new collar workers possess. With the advancements in the job market, different sectors of the economy have been developing new positions that require a more “learning by doing” approach than a traditional education training.

For instance, professions such as account representatives or sales specialists have a growing demand for talent that can show a thorough understanding of the product their company offers, the abilities to lead an effective conversation with customers, and the adaptability to address their demands. And while some of the theory taught by traditional education comes in handy with this type of jobs and their tasks, these skills can’t be learned at colleges or schools, since they are more on-the-job acquired abilities.

Technology advancements create new and skill-specific jobs every day. As tech takes more and more ground, many industries have been forced to reshape their recruitment strategies and requirements, leading to the creation of a whole lot of new positions.

For example, fields such as manufacturing, IT, and healthcare have seen an increase in openings related to building, programming, and maintaining machinery and tools as a result of the rapid growth of innovative tech. These types of tasks require not only a specific set of skills, but also special training that traditional education paths lack to offer. As a result, the whole business world has started to feel the need for specialized workers that can perform the kind of job that new and fast emerging technologies demand.

The most in-demand jobs now are new collar jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, healthcare and IT take the gold home as the fields with the most in-demand jobs, alongside management and sales. But professions such as medical assistant, computer support specialist, and physical therapy assistant are only a few of the many examples of new collar jobs that rank high on the list of the most sought-after jobs.

Registered Nurses working in critical care, telemetry, or in the emergency room have also been gaining ground in today’s labor market. The reason? They master some of the most in-demand skills and are not necessarily required to have a 4-year education, making them a less pricey option for recruiters looking to fill such positions. As a result, these jobs made it on the best-paid jobs list of this year and that’s not it; people working in these fields are expected to reach an annual income of 70k by the end of 2018.

In Summary

As the technological revolution advances, new collar jobs have gained great importance within the labor market and the economy itself. They are an alternative for industries looking to solve some of today’s job market gaps. But while new collar jobs may seem like a tempting candidate pool for most, it doesn’t mean that 4-year degree holders will become obsolete in the eye of companies and recruiters. There are still many roles that require the type of formation that traditional education offers and which are essential for the steady growth of a strong economy.

Nany Indriago / NEUVOO
Content Marketing Strategist