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Spotlight on service: where the jobs are.

Spotlight on SERVICE: Where the Jobs Are

These days, finding a job usually means finding work in a service-producing industry. Made up of all the industries that provide transportation, trade, financial, health, education, government, and other services, this sector of the economy is now the major source of jobs by far, employing almost twice as many workers as the goods-producing industries-- manufacturing, construction, mining, and agriculture. Throughout most of this century, employment in the service-producing industries combined has grown faster than in the goods-producing ones. Almost all the job growth during the 1960's, 1970's, and 1980's was in service-producing industries. (See chart 1.)

The following three articles spotlight three groups of these industries: Health, retail trade, and miscellaneous business services. During the next decade, these industries will probably be extremely important to people planning careers for several reasons. As shown in chart 2, they represent almost a fourth of total employment. They have also been among the fastest growing industries in the economy. Between now and 1995, their rate of growth is expected to continue to be among the fastest, meaning that they will generate more than their share of new jobs. (See chart 3.) Many occupations concentrated in these industries are also expected to be among the fastest growing, including such large fields as nurse, waiter and waitress, nurse aide, kitchen helper, food service worker, store manager, and licensed practical nurse. Furthermore, turnover is high in some of the major occupations in these industries, such as retail trade sales worker, nurse aide, and guard. The combination of growth and turnover will mean that an extremely large number of people will find jobs in these industries over the next decade.

Each of the articles has a slightly different focus. "Health: Crossroads Over the Horizon?' examines some changes that are being made in the ways patients are cared for, the systems used to pay for health care, and the possible impact of these changes on occupations. "Retail Trade: Millions of Jobs, No Experience Required' looks at the various occupations in that industry, paying special attention to the large number of part-time and temporary jobs available. "Miscellaneous Business Services: Little Known but Growing Fast' examines one of the fastest growing parts of the economy; relatively little information is available about occupations within these industries, but some major occupations are discussed.

Photo: Chart 1. Service-producing industries have generated almost all the economy's new jobs in the last quarter century.

Photo: Chart 2. Three service-producing industries account for almost one-fourth of all jobs.

Photo: Chart 3. Three service-producing industries will generate almost one-third of all new jobs between 1982 and 1995.
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Publication:Occupational Outlook Quarterly
Article Type:illustration
Date:Jun 22, 1985
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