4 of the fastest growing jobs for seniors


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It’s no secret: seniors are working at historic rates. Almost a quarter of seniors are now in the job market, up 18% from 10 years ago, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects this to increase over the next eight years. Relatedly, unemployment for seniors has dropped to an impressive 2.6%, below the national rate of 3.5%.

At SimplyWise, we help seniors maximize their retirement income, and have talked to many of our users about why they choose to work in retirement. The reasons tend to fall into a few categories:

  • Working to delay Social Security: Some seniors work not only to generate short-term income, but also to be able to put off claiming Social Security benefits and thereby maximize the monthly benefit they receive when they do claim.
  • Working after the passing of a spouse: Widows and widowers are sometimes under intense financial pressure. While survivor benefits help, the sudden downward shock in household income can force the surviving spouse to continue working.
  • Working as a divorced spouse: Similar to the case of widows and widowers, some seniors work into retirement due to the financial pressure of a divorce. Many divorcees are eligible for spousal benefits, but for some, income from spousal benefits doesn’t cover all of their financial needs.
  • Working for fulfillment: Many seniors simply feel good and would prefer to stay active and feel useful than to transition swiftly into a more slow-paced retirement. 

So how exactly are seniors extending their careers? We ran the numbers and found four of the fastest growing jobs for seniors in 2019. We also highlighted some current openings.

Image Credit: DepositPhotos.com.

1. Counter and rental clerks

Counter and rental clerk jobs grew 150% for seniors in 2019.

Clerks receive orders, generally in person, for repairs, rentals and services. It is an ideal fit for people who are personable, organized and outgoing.

How much they get paid: The average hourly wage is around $15, but some make up to $25/hr, depending on experience, industry and location.

Who hires them: The top industries employing counter and rental clerks are: real estate; automotive equipment rental and leasing; and dry cleaning and laundry services.

Open positions currently include:

  • ShopRite
  • Avis Budget
  • Toyota
  • UPS

Image Credit: iStock/XiXinXing.

2. Administrative services managers

Administrative services manager jobs grew 100% for seniors in 2019, adding 9,000 jobs.

Administrative services managers plan, direct and coordinate supportive services of an organization. For people who are strong communicators, team players and thrive in deadline-driven environments, this could be an excellent work option.

How much they get paid: On average, administrative services managers make $46/hr or a salary of $96,000, according to the BLS.

Who hires them: The industries offering the most of this job are: healthcare and social assistance; educational services; professional, scientific and technical services; local government; and finance and insurance.

Open positions currently include:

  • Chicago Public Schools
  • Edward Jones
  • Delta

Image Credit: iStock/SeventyFour.

3. Couriers and messengers

16,000 more seniors became couriers or messengers in 2019, 94% more than in 2018.

Couriers and messengers pick up and deliver messages, documents, packages within or between offices or to other businesses or people. They may do this by foot, car, motorcycle, bike or public transportation. For seniors looking to stay active and avoid the sedentary rhythm of office life, courier and messenger jobs have an extra appeal.

How much they get paid: Couriers and messengers earn roughly $15 per hour, on average.

Who hires them: The five industries that employ the most couriers and messengers are: local messengers and local delivery; medical and diagnostic laboratories; couriers and express delivery services; legal services; and general medical and surgical hospitals.

Open positions currently include:

  • FedEx
  • UCLA
  • Oppenheimer & Co. Inc

In addition, companies like Uber and DoorDash have emerged and are always looking for more help, while providing a greater degree of flexibility in regards to work hours than many traditional employers.

Image Credit: iStock/Ridofranz.

4. Animal caretakers

The number of seniors working as non-farm animal caretakers increased by 70% in 2019.

As the name would suggest, nonfarm animal caretakers are responsible for taking care of animals like dogs, cats, fish, birds, mice and even zoo animals. Tasks include feeding, watering, grooming, bathing and exercising the animals. Nonfarm animal caretakers may work in animal shelters, zoos, kennels, circuses and aquariums. For seniors with a passion for their furry friends or fish, becoming an animal caretaker can be an excellent way to make extra money.

How much they get paid: On average, nonfarm animal caretakers take in between $12 and $13 per hour.

Who hires them: Industries with the highest levels of employment of nonfarm animal caretakers include: personal services; professional, scientific and technical services; miscellaneous store retailers, social advocacy organizations; and spectator sports.

Some opportunities currently available include:

  • Texas Biomedical Research Institute
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Children’s Fairyland

Additionally, sites like Rover connect dog owners with dog sitters, and can be a good place to find employment.

Image Credit: iStock/PIKSEL.

The job market has shown to be increasingly favorable to seniors

While we highlighted four occupations showing significant job growth for seniors, it doesn’t stop there; 640,000 more seniors worked in 2019 than the prior year, and over 60 occupations saw greater than 50% growth in the amount of seniors. Seniors are more capable workers than ever and employers are taking notice, evidenced by historically low unemployment rates for seniors despite a greater number of seniors in the workforce.

This article originally appeared on SimplyWise.com and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

Image Credit: iStock/fizkes.