Inflation has outpaced wage growth for the first time in three years, according to a new report from Glassdoor, a jobs site that has a database of millions of company reviews, CEO approval ratings, salary reports, and more.
Basically, that means that for many workers, even though they may have gotten a raise, their overall purchasing power has decreased. Inflation grew by 1.9% in June 2017 over the same month in 2016, while pay growth fell from 2.2% last year to 1.7% in 2017. Pay growth has now slowed for five months in a row, and prior to June, the cost of living/inflation had not risen faster than wages since July 2014.
"Overall, pay growth is slowing in the U.S. This remains a puzzle for economists because unemployment is setting new record lows in many cities," said Glassdoor chief economist Dr. Andrew Chamberlain. "Looking at average U.S. wage growth alone doesn't tell the whole story. Few earn the median U.S. salary; most employees earn a salary relevant to their specific job and city."
Chamberlain went on to explain that wage growth has declined in fields where automation is coming, but he noted that he has seen "strong pay growth for certain in-demand jobs, as well as sustained high median pay gains for many retail, technology, healthcare, and professional services jobs."
The following 10 jobs are all seeing wage growth outpace the median, so if your profession has trended in the opposite direction, these are fields you may want to seek out.
10. Delivery Driver
Year-over-year (YoY) growth: 4.3%
Median salary: $38,660
In the changing economy as led by Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), the demand for delivery drivers has increased. It's possible that this may change through automation, but for the foreseeable future, the ever-increasing amount of product being ordered for home delivery will increase the need for drivers.
9. Pharmacy technician
YoY growth: 4.5%
Median salary: $30,696
While many retail fields have gotten smaller, it seems that everywhere you look, there's a new pharmacy. All of those locations need people to work behind the counter aiding the pharmacist, making pharmacy technician a growth field.
8. Maintenance Worker
YoY growth: 4.8%
Median salary: $44,018
The nation's expanding fleet of robot workers can't maintain itself. There's still demand for humans to maintain the growing number of robots, along with the other machines that automate many jobs that were once dominated by human workers.
7. Warehouse associate
YoY growth: 4.9%
Median salary: $41,442
Even though Amazon uses robots along with human workers, the company has thousands of jobs listed at its various warehouses. The online leader is one of many companies hiring people to man its warehouses in order to keep the orders flowing.
6. Bank teller
YoY growth: 6.2%
Median salary: $28,870
Even though some banking services have been automated via smartphone and automated teller machines (ATMs), a demand for actual tellers still exists. That's partly because some people simply prefer handling certain tasks in person, and automatons can't answer every question or meet every banking need.
5. Customer service manager
YoY growth: 6.4%
Median salary: $54,054
Automated customer service tends to enrage customers when it does not work, and they end up mashing buttons or screaming into their phone. The same is true for many companies that have sent their customer service operations overseas, only to bring them back after consumer complaints. Those two things have made American customer service managers increasingly valuable.
4. Claims adjuster
YoY growth: 6.6%
Median salary: $51,320
A claims adjuster reviews insurance claims to determine liability and who needs to pay what. That's work still best-suited for humans, and it's a field where salaries are going up.
3. Restaurant cook
YoY growth: 7.2%
Median salary: $29,025
While a robot may someday make your Big Mac, most food is still prepared by human chefs. It's demanding work that requires you to be on your feet while often working difficult hours, but wages are rising.
YoY growth: 7.7%
Median salary: $24,953
Blame Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) for this one. Even as the fast-growing coffee chain has automated ordering and payment, it has kept its baristas purely human. Rising sales and new locations for the coffee chain have created a demand for baristas both at Starbucks and at local coffee houses.
YoY growth: 8.4%
Median salary: $51,585
The changing American workforce makes filling some jobs a challenge. That makes recruiters more valuable, as they have to find the right person for open jobs in a rapidly changing market.