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The 10 Most in-Demand Career Fields in Kenya in 2021

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When it comes to making a career choice, it is always good to be well-informed. The last thing you want is to get into a career that is going nowhere. In 2021, the Covid-19 pandemic and technology are the key factors driving the job market.  

In Kenya adoption of tech from the grassroots level upwards has created many new jobs. The tech sector has been especially critical to the creation of new jobs. Out of 10 career fields in this list, 5 are in tech. And even the other industries, tech jobs are proliferating.

Out of 10 career fields in this list, 5 are in tech. Click To Tweet
  1. E-commerce

Online commerce is taking over the world and there are millions of order fulfilment careers added to the job market to show for it. So important has e-commerce become, that it is now ranked as a frontline job in the corona pandemic. But e-commerce was exploding before the pandemic, the lockdowns just created the optimum conditions for it to proliferate.

Many careers in e-commerce jobs are for auxiliary workers such as drivers, frontline e-commerce workers, package handlers, etc. But a good many supply chain jobs also fall here. In fact, nearly 75% of new e-commerce jobs require a degree.

To thrive in an e-commerce career, customer service is a critical soft skill. Leadership will help you climb up the ladder anywhere, and time management is just a good skill to have in this demanding industry.  

  1. Wellness

Careers in wellness include professional trainers, personal coaches, and mental health specialists. The primary role of wellness workers is to help others to maximize their productive years.

For example, the professional coaching industry is dedicated to discovering the secrets of productivity at work and teaching people how to implement them. Jobs include life coaches, business coaches (management skills) and career coordinators.

Personal coaches focus more on the individual. Some, like fitness coaches, focus on one aspect – physical wellness. But others provide more holistic attention, combining physical, emotional, and spiritual treatments for a more rounded individual.  

A career in psychology is also quite popular today – as is the idea of mental health. Already growing 25% a year, the demand is only going to rise as barriers to access continue to be broken.

For a career in the wellness industry, mindfulness and a nurturing spirit are needed. A good education will also be necessary, as 97% of jobs require a degree.

  1. Business Development and Sales

A highly charged start-up space has seen an implosion of new businesses in desperate for good sellers. A highly turbulent market has also made it necessary for even the smallest businesses to start embracing strategic advisors. In a gig economy, the cost of business development has gone down, driving up demand.

In Kenya, a career in business development or sales will see you most probably working in the field as a sales assistant, consultant, or specialist. Here, people appreciate your results more than your qualifications, which leaves room for creative solutions and ideas to win the day.

Agriculture has been one of the sectors most transformed by business development ideas. Entrepreneurial solutions have brought us new farming strategies, apps to manage farming operations, cooperatives, and other ideas.

  1. Content Creation

You can never go wrong with a career in content. The world is consuming content at the rate of many gigabytes per second, so the demand will always be there. In some jobs, simply having video editing, writing, or public speaking skills is enough.

Creativity is all you need to start a potentially profitable career as a social influencer; the niches are too many to number. And it is pointless anyway – more come up, some die off. Being socially plugged is the greater qualification here.

In the more technical aspects of content management, there are also ample jobs for content coordination and consultancy, which might require a degree certificate. In many cases, however, an online course is all you need to rank up.

  1. Data Analysis

Data scientists are tasked with sorting through data collected through various collection systems and generate meaningful information from it. Working behind the scenes (in the belly of the so-called beast) data specialists analyze, model, and interpret data on a daily.

 Some of the potential careers include data scientist, data management specialist, data specialist, among others. Statistical modelling is a necessary skill to survive here. Specialized skills like TensorFlow and SPSS wouldn’t harm either.

  1. Information Technology

The rise of the Information Technology career is not slowing down any time soon. Instead, IT roles are becoming more specialized – more engineer-like. Formal education is important, but the programming and web development skills can be acquired informally as well – online, for example.

IT engineering careers will be even more crucial in the smart future. Our smart homes, smart cars, and everything in-between will require handymen of a different calibre when they malfunction – the sort that carries a laptop bag as opposed to a toolbox.

  1. Education

Education careers, just like the education field itself, have been changing very drastically in Kenya in the last few years. New ways of teaching are being incorporated into the education system, as well as a new curriculum.   

Opportunities for employment have been rising as the new system absorbs fresh graduates for quick training and forces older teachers into retirement. But opportunities for educators are not just in classrooms – many new ‘skill educator’ careers are being created through e-books, blogs, and speeches.

  1. Healthcare

I honestly expected healthcare to rank higher on this careers list. But at about 30% growth rate, it is still a career field with solid prospects. Your choice of jobs includes nursing, medicine, research, pharmacy, therapy, among many others.

Education is critical to land a job in healthcare, but medical specialists require nurturing skills, clinical research, and a strong stomach more than anything else. Even though it has been a troubled profession plagued by constant strikes, the prospects are still strong overall.   

  1. Digital marketing  

The digital economy has created a new batch of careers like social media management, search engine specialists, digital marketers, etc. Digital marketers enjoy the special privilege of being paid to use social media. Tempting, right?

Barriers for entry into a profitable digital marketing job are astonishingly high – over 90% of jobs requiring a degree! But seeing as you will probably end up managing digital brands for multitude businesses, the training is needed.

  1. Banking and Fintech

The banking sector continues to have huge prospects for employability. Since Kenya is still not fully banked, these jobs will only continue to grow.

As governments continue to push banking solutions to their citizens, technology has been widely adopted to accomplish this. Financial technology has been filling many gaps in this market. Class training is needed – a course in accounting or economics.   

When all is said and done, entrepreneurship remains the one constant in every career field. The businesses formed to solve a specific problem in the market tend to disrupt the industry and change momentum. Kenya, like the rest of Africa, is cresting in the digital age. This means the economy will be less capitalistic and more solution-based.

Peter Gatuna

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