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These 5 industries are surprising tech hotbeds

From agribusiness to education, IT jobs are on the rise in some unexpected places.

These 5 industries are surprising tech hotbeds

We often talk about how technology is changing the world. From dating to buying groceries, there’s hardly a facet of daily existence that’s not touched in some way by the Internet.

That’s as true for careers as it is for anything else—including jobs in industries that, at first glance, would seem to have little connection to the tech world. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in IT positions are expected to experience massive growth between now and 2020. Software systems developers alone are expected to see a nearly 72% increase. 

That’s just one reason why you don’t have to work at Facebook or Google to be a programmer these days—you’d be just as well off exploring opportunities at a health care provider, retailer, or airline. Read on for a glimpse at some of the great tech jobs cropping up in industries where you might not expect to find them.

1. Manufacturing
As more and more companies take advantage of analytic software to keep track of trends and trouble spots along the production chain, careers in data acquisition have become an unexpected boon for the manufacturing industry. IT workers who analyze manufacturing data (or develop the platforms to do so) help companies streamline their process, from supplier to factory to warehouse, and can save employers millions of dollars. 
Job opportunities: Data systems associate engineer, data modeler (manufacturing and process intelligence)

2. Health care
The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act has created more then 50,000 IT jobs in the health care industry since it was enacted in 2009. Popularly known as the HITECH Act, the bill set new standards for the use of electronic medical records, and prompted the United States Department of Health and Human Services to spend $25.9 billion on the expansion of health IT.
Job opportunities: Health care IT senior product manager, systems engineer

3. Retail
In July, Amazon surpassed Walmart’s quarterly profits and snagged the title of the nation’s top retailer. If retailers (online and brick-and-mortar alike) want to stay competitive, they need to continually up their design game to create the smoothest online shopping experience possible. That’s where developers come in, along with product managers, engineers, and more.
Job opportunities: Senior UX designer, retail technology developer

4. Education
EdTech, or education technology, goes beyond your average high school computer lab to encompass apps and pedagogical tools that are transforming the educational landscape. From online courses to smart blackboards, there are plenty of tech jobs catering to the unique needs of educators at all levels.
Job opportunities: Education technology specialist, special education ed tech

5. Agriculture
Farming drones? Agricultural applications? That’s right: techies have arrived in the food-growing world, and they’re changing the way companies do business. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, 27% of the industry’s new jobs between now and 2020 will be in STEM positions, thanks in large part to an increasing reliance on computers for communication, record keeping, and predictive data.
Job opportunities: Agriculture technology specialist

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