Top 10 Emerging Careers in 2021

This article first appeared in the Hindu on May 22, 2021.

It is now clear that we are hurtling towards a new world. While Engineering and Medicine continue to explode with possibilities, here are some other career options that are becoming important. This list has been put together after exploring job sites, reports from consulting firms, online course popularity and guidance from professionals and professors at leading universities. The statistics for current jobs have been taken from a leading job search site.

UX Designers 

Technology and creative skills are a deadly combination in a transitioning world. As fashion, food, education, and medical advice move to apps and websites, the demand for those who can design interfaces that create fulfilling interactions between people and products or services is rising. (64,700 jobs)

Digital Media and Marketing Specialists

Social media leads marketing today powered by digital content such as films, blogs, podcasts and online events. Those with a knack for watching, measuring and leveraging online trends are hugely valued by businesses across industries. (17,700 jobs)

Customer Success Managers

People skills never go out of fashion. Customer Success Managers who work with clients to best use a software or system, skilling them, helping them articulate their needs and interfacing with technologists to customise offerings are in huge demand. As are people who can open and build new customer relationships – or deepen existing ones. (19,500 jobs)

Teachers, Professors and Counsellors

With new schools, universities and courses being offered across the world — both online and offline — the demand for educators across disciplines and levels has grown: from primary school teachers, to professors, to education counsellors who can help people make sense of these course offerings. (58,000 jobs)

Talent Managers 

As companies rejig their business strategies, they also need Human Resource professionals who can find and hire the best talent for job and those who can reskill and prepare existing and emerging leaders. (84,700 jobs)

Digital Content Creators 

The unsung heroes of this pandemic, they provide an escape and sometimes a calming anchor. But filmmakers, illustrators, writers and animators can also visualise data, create product demonstrations, write compelling blogs,engage new and old clients and even educate millions. (14,600 jobs; many marked “urgent”)

Product, Industrial, Architectural and Interior designers 

There is a tremendous demand for those who can design user-friendly and human-safe products using emerging technologies. With social distancing and WFH changing offices, homes and shopping centres, a redesign of all spaces is imminent. These are jobs for those who marry their visual-spatial creativity with technology. (33,900 jobs)


This highly interdisciplinary field that combines Biology with Medicine, Agriculture, Engineering, Statistics, Environmental Science, Chemistry and even Computer Science opens multiple paths. Applied Research roles are growing across food technology and pharmaceuticals companies. Engineering roles in medical equipment manufacturers, hospitals, diagnostic centres and clinics are growing as are biostatistics and bioinformatics roles in clinical research organisations. (17,500 jobs)

Data Analysts

 Data Science involves a lot more than Maths. It is about insight into data through critical thinking; the why behind observed trends, which requires interdisciplinary skills to correlate diverse things such as the sales of smart phones with binge watching. It is about data visualisation that creates art that tells stories from observed data such as highlighting what emerging lingo means from millions of phone text transcripts. There is a growing space here for writers, artists, psychologists and people with liberal arts education. (19,700 jobs)

Computer Science

For those with a passion for code, software offers tremendous opportunities with fields like cybersecurity and machine learning leading the demand. Interestingly, there are many routes into this space without having to go to engineering college; like for those who master Java Script and Python and enjoy working on back-end projects. Most BCA and BSc (IT) courses require Class 12 Maths as a pre-requisite, though one has to work doubly hard on building skills to compete for growth with the engineers in the industry. (Over 1 lakh jobs)

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