“Hybrid jobs” represent a major shift in the makeup of occupations—and hybrid jobs growth is increasing twice as fast as the rest of the job market.

Hybrid jobs are a challenge and an opportunity for educators and jobseekers alike, because they meld skills from different disciplines. For example, mobile application developers have to understand programming, design, data analysis, user experience and core marketing skills. Those who possess the right combination of these skills are highly sought – twice as much in demand as compared to skills requested in the overall job market.

Burning Glass Technologies has developed a hybridization score for jobs, based on the extent to which they draw on skills from different fields. Our projections, based on our analysis of labor market demand via job postings, shows jobs with a “very high” hybridization score will grow nearly 16% by 2026, compared to 8.7% for jobs overall. Jobs with a low hybridization score, where skills are concentrated in one field, are only projected to grow 7.7%.

Hybrid jobs growth; hybrid jobs growing twice as fast as jobs overall

In a 12-month period, we found that more than a quarter million job postings sought this kind of hybrid talent. The advertised positions included user experience designerdata scientist and product managers. The good news: Those with the needed skills can command salaries comparable to those for positions with more advanced technical requirements. The challenge: these skills aren’t traditionally thought of as linked. Thus business, design and programming are skills and disciplines that aren’t typically taught together – or sought out as a package by students.

Fortunately, it’s possible to prepare for an entry-level hybrid job without a second degree or the equivalent, because the required technology skills can be learned in a range of venues, such as accelerated “boot camp” programs.

What’s Driving Hybrid Jobs Growth?

  • Data analytics, digital marketing and mobile marketing are growing especially fast: Demand for data science skills has tripled over the past five years, while demand for digital marketing and mobile skills has more than doubled.
  • High-level, enterprise-type web development and mobile development positions are in the highest demand: More than 100,000 positions for web and mobile developers were available over the past year.
  • The pay is good: Advertised salaries for these roles range from $65,000 to $111,000 per year, well above the national average starting salary and in line with IT roles requiring more significant technical training.
  • Mobile development, data analytics and product management positions pay the most: Their average advertised salary is more than $100,000.

The takeaway for educators: hybrid jobs growth will require students to mix skill sets, which means there’s an opportunity for institutions that make it easier for students to combine courses and disciplines into these hybrid skill sets.

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