For the vast majority of professionals, a recession spells bad news. In the subprime mortgage crisis of 2008, unemployment levels hit 10%. More recently during the Covid-19 pandemic, a staggering 15% of people in the U.S. were unemployed.

But it's not all doom and gloom. Some industries are cushioned better than others during an economic downturn. As the travel, tourism, retail, and service sectors are hit hard, the tech industry is less affected.

Shrewd tech companies are fast to adapt to recession life. A contracting economy presents opportunities for a range of different technologies including food delivery apps, video conferencing software, cloud services, remote working platforms, and digital collaboration tools.

Which Tech Career is Right for You?

Ready to change your career and join the world’s next workforce? At Thinkful, we’ve got your back with various tech programs to get you equipped with in-demand skills.

Looking for Job Security During a Recession?

Listed below are some relatively safe career options. While not being completely insulated from a recession, if you’re looking for job security, they’re among some of the highest performing fields.

1. Cyber Security Analyst

As companies transition to remote working and increase their digital presence, cybersecurity is becoming increasingly valuable. According to the ISC (International Information System Security Certification Consortium), the cybersecurity workforce gap is already around 4 million globally. Lack of security professionals results in the vulnerability of sensitive data and information. A recession further increases the risk as team members work remotely and have access to sensitive information online.

Several high-profile instances of information security breaches have already been encountered in recent years. Cognizant faced a ransomware attack that led to a loss of around 50 to 70 million dollars. Zoom was found to face frequent privacy issues increasing its vulnerability to cyber-attacks.

The job of a cybersecurity analyst is to evaluate, plan, and implement security systems to protect IT infrastructure and data. You can expect a salary of around $86,000 and you don’t need an expensive degree to get started.

If you have a passion for tech and an interest in vulnerability management, a cybersecurity position will provide you with a rewarding career for years to come. Enroll in our online cybersecurity bootcamp to learn everything you need to kickstart your dream career. We’ll teach you trending skills in access control, network security, continuity management, and incident response. Our expert term will even provide one-on-one mentoring and coaching to help you achieve your goals.

2. Cloud Administrator

As more businesses migrate to cloud servers, the demand for cloud administrators is on the increase. The  job of a cloud administrator is to manage, update, and maintain the  cloud infrastructure. In addition to providing technical assistance,  you’ll handle cloud services, subscriptions, storage, and resources.  During a slowdown, companies use the cloud to cost-effectively pilot digital strategies. They may even move their entire system to the cloud in order to save money and reduce  costs. This shift in business approach puts a greater emphasis on the  management of cloud resources. The  IDC (International Data Corporation) predicts that cloud administrators  will be in great demand in the post slowdown scenario. It’s expected  that businesses will continue to fund cloud deployments and may even  proactively grow their cloud projects.

3. Software Engineer

According  to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in the area of software  development are projected to grow 21 percent by 2028. Though a recession would likely slow this growth, it won’t stifle it completely. While some companies will be struggling, others will be pivoting and will require software engineers to build their digital products and services.

As an economic downturn hits home, people change their spending habits.  Rather than travel to shopping malls and restaurants, they look for  cheaper products online and order food for delivery. Software engineers are required to build smartphone apps, stand-out websites, and e-commerce platforms that boom during a recession.

To become a software engineer you’ll need to learn a programming language like C++, Java, HTML, JavaScript, PHP, or Python. You’ll also need to be naturally analytical and love solving problems.

If this career interests you, we provide an online software engineering bootcamp that teaches you career-ready skills in the field. The course has been put together by industry experts who understand exactly what hiring managers are looking for. We’ll mentor you through the program and help you land a well-paid developer position at a top tech firm. Contact our course admissions team for more information.

4. Artificial Intelligence Specialist

Artificial intelligence (AI) is an area of computer science that deals with building smart systems capable of completing tasks that usually require human intelligence. The demand for AI specialists has not decreased during disruptions like lockdown and the ongoing economic slowdown.

A 2019 report from Gartner states that enterprise applications for AI have grown an incredible 270 percent in just four years. This has created a level of demand that outweighs the current supply of qualified AI professionals. AI use cases span across almost all industry sectors, providing the field with huge growth potential. From self-driving cars and intelligent kitchen appliances to sports analytics and digital ad optimization.

5. Data Engineer

As internet speeds increase and smartphone ownership continues to grow, people are spending more time online than ever before. When individuals browse the web, shop online, or use social media, they leave a trail of data behind them. Companies can leverage this data to make informed business decisions and boost sales.

Data storage, infrastructure, and cloud services aren’t expected to be significantly affected during an economic slowdown. Arguably, more data is collected during a recession as people stay at home to save money. Talented data engineers are responsible for collecting, storing, and managing the huge amount of information we share online. You’ll  need to build powerful data systems, use machine learning and AI, and  understand data wrangling techniques to make it in this field. Sign up for our data engineering bootcamp and we’ll teach you the skills you need to fast-track your big data career.

6. Cloud Architect

Unlike cloud administrators, cloud architect professionals are expected to coordinate the cloud adoption process, develop the architecture, and create a design that will guide the final product. You’ll also be responsible for bridging the gap between complex business problems and solutions in the cloud.  Numerous organizations have already made substantial investments in cloud services and platforms. Others are expected to supplement those investments and fund existing deployments even during a recession.

7. Financial Analyst

The job of a financial analyst is to research and highlight investment trends. You’ll use your analytical skills to assess balance sheets, burn rates, and cashflows forecasts. This helps firms promote financial strength and sustainability for their clients and employers. You’ll also provide recommendations on investment strategies and risk management.

According  to Glassdoor, entry-level financial analysts can earn $61,971 on  average. Gain several years of experience and become a quantitative  analyst and you can expect to take home $106,751 annually.

During a recession, the demand for financial analysts can actually increase. There is never a more important time to accurately assess the financial health of companies and assets. If you’re an analytical thinker that loves crunching numbers, enroll in our financial analyst bootcamp. This online course will teach you up-to-date skills in accounting foundations, financial planning,  STEEPLE and SWOT analysis, financial modeling, and advanced Excel. We’ll even help you find a job once you’ve completed the course with interview prep and recommendations.

8. Tech Support

Professionals involved in tech support are a lifeline to their customers and organizations. They fix network problems, diagnose issues, and install and configure hardware and software. Without IT professionals, there would be a delay in business activities after every technical issue. During a recession technology usage doesn’t disappear. Help desk and tech support professionals will always be in high demand and enjoy excellent job security.

A large technical support infrastructure is required to handle the operations of this huge sector. There’s also strong evidence to suggest future growth even after the current pandemic.

9. DevOps Engineer

According to Glassdoor, a DevOps engineer is considered the fifth-best job in the U.S. A large number of organizations have adopted DevOps to improve collaboration between software development and IT operations. Given the indispensable benefits of DevOps, engineers have become some of the most in-demand jobs in the IT field. The DevOps domain is believed to have a very promising future as many more organizations are prepared to adopt this approach.

10. Database Administrator

Database administrators are responsible for building data systems and storing  sensitive company information. You’ll need to learn database design,  SQL, data migration, database optimization, backup and recovery  techniques. You’ll also work closely with the cybersecurity team to ensure classified data is kept secure. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated a 9 percent growth in employment for database administrators from 2018 to 2028. This isn’t expected to change dramatically during a recession. Data is  still collected, stored, and managed during an economic downturn.

Boost Your Job Security by Leveling-Up Your Skills

If you’re in a completely different field, you can transition into a recession-proof tech job. And if you're already employed in one of the above-mentioned fields, it’s still worthwhile to increase your earning potential and add to your skillset. You can increase your value by investing in yourself and continually learning new skills. This will help you stand out from the crowd in a competitive job market.

Take a look at our tech careers blog for further inspiration on your future career direction.

Which Tech Career is Right for You?

Ready to change your career and join the world’s next workforce? At Thinkful, we’ve got your back with various tech programs to get you equipped with in-demand skills.

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