Monday, April 23, 2012

Employment Projections for Human Services, 2010-2020

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The Human Services career cluster is projected to experience fast growth between 2010 and 2020. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, occupations in this cluster employed around 6.5 million workers in 2010 and will employ over 8 million by 2020. Human Services is expected to add jobs faster than the national average, growing by 26 percent between 2010 and 2020.

Cluster Overview: Expectations for Change, 2010-2020
This cluster includes a variety of different kinds of occupations that will probably grow at different rates over the next  decade and for different reasons.

Strong growth is predicted for the counseling and social service occupations in this cluster, and it certainly seems likely that many people will need and want help from counselors and social service workers. But some of these jobs depend on funding sources that may face difficulties over the next decade. Many social service jobs depend on government funding and other human services jobs depend on funding from charitable and non-profit organizations. Counseling and mental health occupations rely on the continued wide availability of health insurance programs that pay for their services.  Cuts in government spending, charitable donations, or the availability of health insurance could have a significant impact on employment in these fields.

The personal care occupations, from Shampooers, to Embalmers, to Personal Care Aides, are not dependent on government funds or philanthropic organizations. Of these, the most rapid growth is projected for Personal Care Aides. The BLS predicts that employment in this occupation will increase by about 70 percent as the population ages and more and more people need this service.


Projections Data: What the BLS tells us about employment
Every two years the BLS releases new national employment projections for over 700 different occupations. The projections include five important pieces of information discussed in this post.
Estimated 2010 employment: The estimated number of jobs or positions in each occupation. (This is a count of positions, not workers; many people have two jobs).
Projected 2020 employment: The estimated number of jobs or positions in each occupation. (A count of positions, not workers; many people have two jobs).
Numeric Change 2010-2020 or "New Jobs:" Most occupations are expected grow by 2020 as employers  create new positions or "new jobs."
Percent Change 2010-2020: The percent increase or decrease in employment over the decade. This information helps us compare the rate of change across jobs of different sizes.
Job Openings 2010-2020: Job opportunities arise in two ways: when employers create new jobs and when workers retire or leave an occupation and need to be replaced by new hires. The BLS projects how many people will be retiring from each occupation over the decade and combines this with the number of new jobs to predict how many "job openings" will become available. Even shrinking occupations have job openings because employers  need to replace some of the people who retire with new workers.
Pathways Overview
Following the national system of career clusters, Human Services is divided into five pathways: Consumer Services, Counseling and Mental Health Services, Early Childhood Development and Services, Family and Community Services, and Personal Care Services.  Each pathway is projected to experience positive growth between 2010 and 2020, and all but one is projected to grow faster than the national average of 14 percent.
  • Personal Care and Services was the largest pathway in 2010, employing close to 3 million workers. It will remain the largest pathway in  in 2020.  This pathway includes a variety of occupations, including those in cosmetology, funeral services, and fitness. The largest occupation, Personal Care Aides is expected to grow almost three times faster than any other occupation in this pathway and to provide more new jobs and job openings than all of the other occupations combined.
  • The Family and Community Services pathway includes workers in community service, religion, and social work.  All of these occupations are projected to grow faster than the national average through 2020. Overall the pathway is projected to have over 600,000 job openings over the next decade, about half resulting from the creation of new jobs. As I said above, however, I have some doubts about the likelihood of growth in public sector and nonprofit jobs and most Family and Community Services occupations fall into these sectors.
  • Counseling and Mental Health Services is a relatively small pathway, employing about 427,000 workers in 2010. However, an additional 560,000 workers are employed in related counseling and mental health occupations classified with the Health Science and Education and Training clusters instead of with Human Services. These occupations are: Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers; Educational, Guidance, School, and Vocational Counselors; and Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists. All of the counseling and mental health occupations are projected to grow faster than the national average, although as I said above, I have some doubts about the likelihood of this.
  • The Early Childhood Development and Services pathway only includes one occupation tracked by the BLS: Childcare Workers.  This occupation employed over 1.2 million workers in 2010 and is projected to grow rapidly through 2020. Two other closely related occupations are included in the Education and Training cluster. These are: Preschool Teachers and Education Administrators, Preschool, and Childcare. Together these occupations employed over half a million workers in 2010 and are projected to grow by about 25 percent. However, actual growth in this field will be determined largely by the rate of population growth in the preschool age group. This is not easy to predict.
  • The Consumer Services pathway will be the slowest growing between 2010 and 2020. Consumer Services is also a small pathway including only three occupations tracked by the BLS. This pathway had an estimated 471,000 employees in 2010, and is projected to grow by 13 percent, between 2010 and 2020.
Pathways Employment Overview (in 1000s)

Pathways and Number of Occupations Included
Employment 2010Employment 2020New JobsPercent ChangeJob Openings
Consumer Services (3)471 532 61 13%162
Counseling and Mental Health Services (8)427 557 130 30%224
Early Childhood Development and Services (1)1,282 1,544 262 20%666
Family and Community Services (9)1,467 1,800 333 23%662
Personal Care Services (16)2,826 3,695 868 31%1,321
Total6,474 8,128 1,654 26%3,035
Counseling and Mental Health Occupations from Other Clusters (3)562 688 127 23%265
Preschool Teachers and Administrators from Education and Training (2)520650129 25%266


Job Openings and New Jobs
The BLS projects "job openings" for each occupation that arise from the combination of new jobs and the need to replace workers who retire. In total, the Human Services cluster is expected to have just over 3 million job openings between 2010 and 2020. Over half of these job openings will be from new jobs created in the cluster. The occupations in Human Services expected to have the most new jobs between 2010 and 202 are:
  • Personal Care Aides,
  • Childcare Workers,
  • Social and Human Service Assistants,
  • Hairdressers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists, and
  • Fitness Trainers and Aerobics Instructors
The occupations expected to have the most job openings are very similar to those expected to have the most new jobs;
  • Personal Care Aides,
  • Childcare Workers
  • Hairdressers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists,
  • Social and Human Service Assistants, and 
  • Child, Family, and School Social Workers
The graph below shows the ten occupations expected to have the most job openings between 2010 and 2020.


Declining Occupations
The Human Services cluster is only expected to have two occupations that will be declining between 2010 and 2020.
  • Pressers, Textile, Garment, and Related Materials (-12%)
  • Shampooers (-9%)
Complete Listing
The following table gives a complete picture of how occupations in Human Services are changing between 2010 and 2020.

Employment Projections (in 1000s)

Pathways and Occupations Included
Employment 2010Employment 2020New JobsPercent ChangeJob Openings
Consumer Services Pathway471.1531.960.813%162.3
Property, Real Estate, and Community Association Managers303.9322.218.40%82.3
Credit Counselors33.139.86.720%15.2
Social and Community Service Managers134.1169.935.827%64.8
Counseling and Mental Health Services Pathway426.9556.8129.930%223.6
Sociologists4.04.80.718%1.8
Psychologists, All Other17.520.63.218%8.7
Counselors, All Other31.638.46.721%13.5
Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors85.5108.923.427%41.7
Rehabilitation Counselors129.8166.436.628%64.4
Industrial-Organizational Psychologists2.23.00.835%1.5
Mental Health Counselors120.3163.943.636%69.4
Marriage and Family Therapists36.050.814.841%22.6
Early Childhood Development and Services Pathway1,282.31,544.3262.020%665.8
Childcare Workers1,282.31,544.3262.020%665.8
Family and Community Services Pathway1,467.41,800.0332.623%662.3
Social Scientists and Related Workers, All Other35.438.32.98%17.6
Directors, Religious Activities and Education126.0147.121.217%44.5
Religious Workers, All Other48.756.98.317%17.2
Clergy230.8271.340.518%79.9
Child, Family, and School Social Workers295.7353.958.220%128.3
Community and Social Service Specialists, All Other121.3147.726.422%52.6
Residential Advisors72.690.718.125%45.7
Social and Human Service Assistants384.2490.2106.028%189.1
Healthcare Social Workers152.7203.951.234%87.4
Personal Care Services Pathway2,826.43,694.6868.231%1,320.7
Pressers, Textile, Garment, and Related Materials57.851.0-6.8-12%4.0
Shampooers22.320.3-2.0-9%4.1
Laundry and Dry-Cleaning Workers225.2226.81.61%44.3
Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewers47.248.10.92%7.2
Funeral Attendants31.032.61.65%16.3
Embalmers7.17.40.45%3.7
Barbers62.266.74.57%15.8
Personal Care and Service Workers, All Other102.3113.511.211%33.3
First-Line Supervisors of Personal Service Workers218.9248.529.614%82.6
Hairdressers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists627.7726.198.416%218.1
Manicurists and Pedicurists81.795.313.617%28.5
Funeral Service Managers, Directors, Morticians, and Undertakers29.334.65.318%10.7
Massage Therapists153.7184.630.920%55.9
Fitness Trainers and Aerobics Instructors251.4311.860.424%100.6
Skincare Specialists47.659.311.725%20.4
Personal Care Aides861.01,468.0607.071%675.2
Counseling and Mental Health Occupations from other Clusters561.8688.4126.623%265.4
Educational, Guidance, School, and Vocational Counselors281.4334.853.419%113.7
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists154.3188.033.722%82.3
Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers126.1165.639.531%69.4
Preschool Teachers and Administrators from Education and Training520.4649.9129.425%266.2
Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare Center/Program63.679.515.825%33.8
Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education456.8570.4113.625%232.4