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What are SA's most in-demand jobs for the next decade?

Unemployment in South Africa remains an alarming issue. The country has among the highest youth unemployment rates globally with 58% of 15-24-year-olds not working. To add to the challenge, we are facing the rapidly changing skill set that is required by businesses.
Jake Willis
Jake Willis

There is no doubt that 2020 has been a challenging year. With the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic shaping our lives for decades to come, most businesses and organisations have found alternative ways to work remotely. The focus for 2021 will be on honing the processes involved in working remotely.

As businesses continue to prepare for the future of work, and the internet takes an even more significant role in our lives; the reskilling process must match the accelerated pace of digitalisation in the workplace.

Therefore, it is imperative to identify skills needs in South Africa and ensure that education and training, at all levels, match the immediate needs of the economy, as technology-driven skills increase in demand.

Top jobs that will be high in-demand in the next decade

Digitalisation has already reshaped several industries, and it is expected to reset the entire business environment. While this may produce an increase in productivity, the new technology-enabled jobs will require higher skill levels and a greater application of expertise.

No matter what field you choose, having certain skills can increase your likelihood of success. Determining which jobs are most in-demand can help choose a career path. To help you with your future career choice, here is a list of industries that are predicted to experience high growth in the next decade:

Information technology

South Africa’s IT sector is generally robust, has access to the latest technologies and methodologies to equip people with the necessary basic skills. However, there is a significant shortage of specialised skills in the sector, which has a negative effect on skills output.

According to research conducted by Research and Markets, it is estimated that there are more than 20,000 companies in the ICT sector that contribute to approximately 8% of South Africa’s GDP.


South Africa is the 37th largest market for e-commerce with a revenue of R46bn in 2019, wherein 29% of South African consumers are shopping more online now than before the pandemic. Since the start of lockdown, e-commerce has grown 40%, and will continue to rise.

This rapid increase to 29% from 21% before the Covid-19 outbreak is a potential indicator of a steadily growing medium- to long-term enthusiasm for e-commerce by more South Africans.

Digital marketing specialists

Companies had to transition into the digital space and stores progressed into e-commerce platforms. This transition has led to a need for more digital marketing professionals.

Digital marketing can provide companies with outstanding advertising for lower prices and with even better results – proven.

Marketing strategists

Businesses are expected to make a full comeback post the Covid-19 pandemic. Unlike digital marketers, a marketing strategist is solely responsible for creating marketing strategies, identifying the best messaging and creative concept, and executing the strategy.

Essentially, navigating around which career path to choose can be challenging. However, the list of high in-demand jobs can prove to be particularly helpful in narrowing your career choice and equipping you with the knowledge and skills needed in different industries.

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