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Jobs with the most openings in each U.S. state

Adriana Belmonte
Associate Editor

Some job fields are growing particularly quickly in certain U.S. states, and some gigs are in higher demand across the country.

Food preparers had the most job openings in 20 different states, including Utah, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Rhode Island. A formal education generally isn’t required for these positions, and workers earn an average of $10.93 an hour or $22,730 a year. By 2026, the industry is expected to grow by 8%, on par with the national average.

Cashiers are also in need across the country. There are 16 states most in need of cashiers, such as Connecticut, Louisiana, Iowa, Arizona, and Delaware. Like food preparers, most cashiers don’t need any kind of formal education. They see a median annual salary of $21,030, which translates to about $10.11 an hour.

Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and projections from the government-backed Projections Managing Partnership (PMP), Yahoo Finance put together a map of the jobs with the most openings in 2019:

Food industry workers are in demand. (Graphic: David Foster/Yahoo Finance)

Several states on the East Coast are seeking retail salespersons. New York, New Jersey, Maine, Massachusetts, and Florida are all in search, along with Hawaii and Alaska. Retail workers earn a median hourly pay of $11.24 per hour, though some companies recently raised their minimum wages for these workers. In 2018, Walmart (WMT) raised its minimum hourly wage to $11, while Target (TGT) upped its to $12 and pledged to reach $15 by 2020.

In California, New Mexico, and West Virginia, personal care aides are in high demand. BLS defines these workers as those who “help people with disabilities, chronic illnesses, or cognitive impairment by assisting in their daily living activities. They often help older adults who need assistance.” The job field is projected to grow up to 41% by 2026, which is much faster than the national average.

‘We’ve got to pay professional drivers what they’re worth’

Truck drivers are in luck in North Dakota. Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers transport goods through intercity routes and earn an hourly median pay of $20.42. Delivery truck drivers earn about $14.06 an hour. Generally, the U.S. is still seeing a shortage of truck drivers across the country.

(Photo: Jill Johnson/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT via Getty Images)

In order to combat the shortage of truck drivers, Walmart recruited many by changing its hiring process, including offering $1,500 referral bonuses.

“We’ve got to pay professional drivers what they’re worth to continue attracting the best,” Brian Fielkow, CEO of transportation company Jetco, previously told Yahoo Finance. “That’s just the starting point. We have a lot of work to do as an industry to bring people back into the trucks.”

Adriana is an associate editor for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @adrianambells.


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