The 5 most important tech job trends for 2018

AI and a tech jobs boom are poised to change the employment landscape in 2018, according to Glassdoor.

The job market will continue to shift in 2018, as technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) impact many industries, and mobile changes the way people find and apply for jobs, according to a new report from job search site Glassdoor.

Despite two major hurricanes and political challenges, the US economy experienced a strong year, Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor's chief economist, wrote in the report: 1.9 million new jobs were added in 11 months, and stock markets reached an all-time high. Additionally, the nation's unemployment rate dropped to a 17-year low, fueling a talent war in tech, healthcare, e-commerce, and other professional services, he added.

"This year has been good for many—but not all—workers," Chamberlain wrote. "Job seekers who've mastered key skills in data science, software development, and health professions are seeing rising pay and benefits. At the same time, average wages for many remain stubbornly flat. Despite a healthy job market overall, job growth is sharply divided, with tech skills earning a premium and others being left behind by rising artificial intelligence (AI) and automation."

SEE: IT jobs 2018: Hiring priorities, growth areas, and strategies to fill open roles (Tech Pro Research)

Tech jobs continue to spread: In 2017, a growing number of employers in finance, retail, manufacturing, and other traditional industries began creating more tech roles. And a growing share of tech hiring is happening far from Silicon Valley, in more affordable tech clusters such as Seattle, Austin, Detroit, Dallas, and Raleigh, Glassdoor found.

Here are five job disruptions to watch for 2018, according to Chamberlain.

1. AI changing the future of work

AI and automation will impact nearly every facet of the workforce in some way in the future. However, certain industries—particularly human resources and finance—are more likely to see big changes in 2018. New AI tools are complementing the skills of human workers in these areas, and changing many established roles that are easy to automate.

2. Modernization of mobile job applications

Since most job application systems were created in the past, applying for a job via a mobile device can be a difficult process, Chamberlain said. It's likely that 2018 will see growth in mobile application platforms, though it may take time before they are commonly used.

3. Job growth in tech, healthcare, and labor-intensive roles

Innovations in tech will drive job creation in 2018, in both tech and traditionally non-tech industries, Chamberlain said. Significant demographic shifts, such as the aging population, will also lead to massive workforce changes. Many traditional jobs, such as waiters and truck drivers, that cannot be automated easily in the near terms will continue to grow in number, he predicted.

4. Increased transparency in the application and interview process

The online job application process remains opaque for many employees, Chamberlain said. In 2018, it's likely that job seekers will gain more visibility into both the application process and the status of job applications in real time.

5. Encouraging employee passions through role experimentation

Companies are increasingly finding ways for employees to experiment with different roles within the company, to tap the changing skills and passions of their workforce, reduce turnover, and better match talent to positions, Chamberlain said. It's likely this will continue and expand in the new year.

Image: iStockphoto/nd3000

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About Alison DeNisco Rayome

Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.

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