According to CNN Moneysoftware engineers have the bestjob in the USA.
That may be less of a surprise than one might think; a recentpoll on the embedded.com sitesuggested that many of us love this field. 58% of respondents were veryenthusiastic about their decision to be an engineer.
CNN looked at salaries and job-growth prospects, stress,flexibility, creativity and a sense of how easy it is to enter andadvance in each career to select the 50 best jobs in America.
Here's the top ten: Software engineers, College professors,Financial advisors, Human resources managers, Physician assistants,Market research analysts, Computer/IT analysts, Real estate appraisers,Pharmacists, and Psychologists.
I plotted the data and found that there's no correlation between”great jobs” (where #1 on the horizontal axis is software engineering)and salary. Numerous studies have shown this to be true in ourindustry, but I was interested to find it hold across a wide range ofcareers.
The average for the top 50 is $80k, which is exactly where softwareengineers fell. Lawyers were number 30 on the list despite their $154kincome. Dentists do well financially ($123k) but are down at number 43.Doctors top the big bucks scale at $248k, yet score only 30 on the”best job” metric.
Prospects for 10 year job growth (using Bureau of Labor Statisticsnumbers) correlated highly to the top jobs. The black trend line showsthis clearly on the following graph.
There's important advice for managers on the CNN site: “Workers whoexpressed satisfaction at work had substantially better conditionsacross the board, with easier unscheduled time off, scheduleflexibility and better telecommuting options.”
No doubt software developers engaged in IT projects or webdevelopment can do their work with toes dug deep in the sand at anybeach sporting wi-fi, but a lot of embedded people need access toexpensive target hardware one is unlikely to find at a Starbuckshotspot.
Perks count. Workers at New Belgium Brewing get a free case of beera week. If it's distributed on Fridays, I wonder what time employeesstraggle in Monday?
Jack G. Ganssle is a lecturer and consultant on embeddeddevelopment issues. He conducts seminars on embedded systems and helpscompanies with their embedded challenges. Contact him at . His website is .
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