Do you want to keep your job during a recession? Let’s talk about the recession-proof jobs that you can choose in any field. While no job is 100% recession-proof, certain career fields are impacted less during a recession.
During an economic slowdown or downturn, there are generally layoffs and fewer work opportunities and job offers. It is harder to get a job since many sectors get hit, and most companies tighten their operating expenses.
Though this is something that no one hopes for, everyone can experience a recession. But its impact will be felt differently based on the status of each person’s life. Regardless of whether you have high-income skills or not, recession can make all of this irrelevant quickly.
At any time a recession occurs, many are worried about their jobs. During the 2008 recession, the unemployment rate was over 10%. In 2020, the employment rates quickly rose to 14.7%. It has since come down to 8.4%, which is still significantly higher than the 3.5% in late 2019.
So, if you are looking for a recession-proof job, get your resume and make sure your resume stands out from the rest to impress your prospective employers.
Table of Contents show
What Is A Recession?
A recession is an economic downturn that results in the rise of unemployment. Recession is a common financial term that refers to a significant decline in economic activity.
Simply put, when there is a general economic decline for two consecutive quarters in a year and a rise in unemployment during the same period, a recession is happening. This can affect a single country and often happens across many countries.
Best Recession-Proof Jobs In 2021
Are you looking for career fields that are impacted less during a recession? While there is absolutely no guarantee, specific industries or professions are essential for our society. Here is a selection of recession-proof jobs at every skill level.
1. Medical & Healthcare Professionals
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a registered nurse, doctor, assistant, or anything in between. Having a job in the medical and healthcare field is a great place to be during a recession.
Even when a recession hits, people will get sick, and health care is needed. Hospitals or clinics are a great career choice if you want to have job security. Plus, if you’re someone who has a nonmedical job in a healthcare clinic or hospital, you may benefit from this as well. As long as health care is needed, you will be as well.
2. Grocery Store Workers
The moment a recession hits, people are slowly going to decrease their discretionary spending. They don’t buy things they don’t need, search for no spend ideas, and look into at-home date night ideas. They’re staying in more and going out less.
When you cut down on how often you go out to eat, you will do more grocery shopping. While there are some quick tips to save money on groceries, you will still need to get groceries. If you’re looking for a job, a grocery store worker may be more stable than other jobs.
Extra tip: Instead of working in a grocery store, you can deliver groceries through different apps. Instacart is one of the most popular options at the moment. You can determine when you work, and you get paid to deliver food to people’s doorstep.
3. Delivery Services
Online shopping and delivery services have increased over the years. In the last couple of months, delivery services are booming. People want to avoid going to shops, and ordering your things online is easier than ever.
You can deliver groceries, clothes, household items, furniture, and more. Everything that you have in your home, you can transport. The continued increase in people having things delivered makes delivery and courier services one of the most recession-proof jobs out there.
Extra tip: Deliver groceries through Instacart. With Instacart, you can determine your schedule, and you get paid to deliver food to people’s doorsteps.
4. IT Professionals
Technology is advancing daily, and we’re trying to benefit from that. Companies are improving systems to replace manual labor and save on expenses.
If you’re looking for a recession-proof job, working in the IT field is something to consider. People need help with their computers, phones, and software systems more than ever before. Our world relies on technology and needs IT professionals to function.
5. Accountants & Auditors
Whether there’s an economic crisis or not, accountants and auditors have a relatively recession-proof job. As long as businesses continue, they need an accountant to report their yearly numbers and check their books. With their qualifications and specific skill-set, job opportunities are all around.
Also, people who have an accountant file their tax returns will most likely still use that. It’s better to pay an accountant than to make a mistake that costs more than their rate.
6. Debt Management Professionals
An unfortunate side effect of a recession is that many are going into debt. People will add more money to their credit card balances, rack up more debt, and need help managing it.
As a debt management professional, you help people reduce their debt and prevent bankruptcy from happening. You help people that need money now to reduce their debt.
7. Utility Workers
When we are talking about core services that we will always need, utility workers are providing them. We still need support in waste management, water, electricity, and other utilities. Everyone is using these services daily, meaning there is constant and high demand.
The high demand combined with the aging current labor force means that there will be a labor shortage for years to come. If you’re looking for a recession-proof job, utility workers are high on the list.
8. Public Safety Professionals
Just as utility working, public safety professionals are crucial to society during any economic cycle.
Working as an ambulance driver, firefighter, or police officer makes you relatively recession-proof. It is also a great option when you are looking for a job where you can help others.
9. Federal Government Employees
If you work for the government, you have one of the most stable jobs there is. Government jobs will be influenced little by the economic cycles, as there is a constant need for them. Also, the government is a big organization that will not downsize the moment a recession hits.
When you are applying for jobs, check out the postings they have online. It is a stable career path for your work life. Don’t worry if you are an entry-level worker without a lot of work experience. You can choose from several jobs at all levels.
10. Teachers & Educators
People need education, no matter the state of the economy. Teachers are essential, even during times when learning takes different forms. It doesn’t matter whether you are providing online classes; the need for education is still there.
Stanford economist Caroline Hoxby found that colleges and graduate schools see higher enrollment numbers during the Great Recession. People want to postpone their entry into the job market since there are fewer openings. They enroll in higher education instead.
[Related Read: 37 Best Online Tutoring Jobs To Try In 2021]
11. Auto Mechanics
Whatever the state of the economy, people still need to get their cars fixed. While people will skip the smaller optional repairs, most auto repairs are mandatory to keep driving safely.
Many people wait to buy a new car and will get their current one repaired instead. Because older cars need plenty of maintenance, auto mechanics will not be bored.
12. Law Enforcement
If you are working in law enforcement, you have a job that won’t stop just because of a downturn. People still want to live in a safe environment, and laws need continuous enforcement. Whether you are a federal agent or a detective, your job will be relatively stable during recessions.
13. Corrections Professionals
Corrections professionals like corrections officers and parole boards are great recession-proof jobs. They often don’t see layoffs at all during a recession.
Just as in law enforcement, prisons operate as usual, and everyone involved will need to continue their work.
14. Judiciary Workers
When the economy experiences a downturn, everyone that is involved in the justice system stays employed. Whether you are a judge or work in a related service like the court’s security, you will keep working.
Currently, with the pandemic, some courts are closed or postponing services. It is not something related to an economic downturn but rather to the current global health crisis.
15. Funeral Workers
Whether the economy is crashing or flourishing, funerals and cremations will continue. Certain families may go for the less expensive option, but there will still be enough work during a recession.
While this may not be your dream job, think about it in your search for jobs. If you’re looking for a new job or are unemployed, this field may be an opportunity for you.
16. Public Transport Workers
In big cities, public transport workers are always in high demand. People taking public transport to work may even increase during a recession, as some may have to get rid of their car.
Whether you drive the bus or sell train tickets, public transport workers will have relatively high job security when a recession hits.
Just like other healthcare services, pharmacists will see a steady stream of customers. People will still need their sleep medication or antibiotics. With the population aging, this can be one of the best recession-proof jobs for years to come.
18. Senior Care Professionals
The general population ages, creating more jobs for senior care professionals. People need assistance living in nursing homes and at home, even during a recession. People need quality elder care, unrelated to the current economic situation.
19. Mental Health Professionals
On the one hand, some people may stop their therapy sessions if their financial status is declining. On the other hand, when a recession occurs, many people are stressed out. It can cause more mental health problems and more marital problems. Some people will develop an anxiety disorder, while others will turn to alcohol.
Mental health professionals are crucial at the time a recession or economic downturn hits.
As with health care for humans, pets also need health care during recessions. While people do bring their pets to the vet, they do so less regularly. With people having more pets and spending 7% more on pet care every single year, we can conclude it’s a rather recession-proof job.
Actuaries help with the risk analysis of businesses. In normal economic circumstances, their jobs are necessary for companies to assess risks and hedge for them. In an economic downturn, analyzing risks is even more essential.
Actuaries help companies analyze high-risk areas, the best places to cut costs, and increase efficiencies. In times of crisis, these are all valuable things to know. Generally speaking, actuaries will keep their jobs during an economic recession.
Digital or not, marketers have a great shot at keeping their jobs during a recession. Most marketers will increase the investment made by companies. Every dollar companies spend on their marketing budget wants to see more than that dollar returned.
For example, at my company, we have marketers who will return $1.50 for every $1 invested in the marketing budget. No matter how much money you put into it, you will get more out.
23. Divorce Attorneys And Mediators
During recessions, couples won’t stop getting divorced. On the one hand, as financial distress is one of the main reasons for divorce, recessions may increase divorce rates. On the other hand, financial hardship may keep couples together.
If you are a divorce attorney or mediator, you will still have enough work during downturns.
Common Aspects Of Recession-Proof Jobs
Why are some jobs recession-proof while others aren’t? Plus, how is your specific job doing when it’s not on the list? Don’t worry. The fact that your job isn’t on the list doesn’t mean that you’ll get fired next week.
There are a couple of things to consider when you want to know if your jobs can survive a recession. Ask yourself:
- Is your job essential for society? For example, without healthcare or public transport workers, there would be chaos quickly.
- Are you filling a need? For example, people want to get their pets healthy again.
- Do you need specialized training or experience? For example, IT professionals or accountants have specific education and experience that is hard to obtain quickly.
If you don’t answer yes to all three questions, don’t worry. There are so many jobs that are crucial to our society and general well-being. We simply weren’t able to list them all.
Conclusion – Recession-Proof Jobs
While no job is 100% recession-proof, some positions are more recession-proof than others. Regardless, a recession can negatively impact you and your family. It can change your financial plans in more ways than one.
If you’re worried about getting laid off or you already lost your job, go through the list of these best recession-proof jobs again. See what jobs suit you and start to include those jobs into your job search. Searching for a new job and job-hunting, in general, can be challenging.
Find career opportunities for a job you enjoy by checking online job boards, (online) job fairs, vacancies, and make sure you connect with recruiters. This is a sure way of taking a step in the right direction so that you can manage your career regardless of how the economy is in your place.
Finding a job or finding employment depends on the career path you want to take. Check out the available jobs that are currently trending and looking for staffing. You may find your entirely recession-proof dream job!
Do you have a recession-proof job?
Marjolein is a financial consultant who has built over €4,000 monthly passive income and saves over 70% of her income. Read Radicals’ inspiring story, from stuck in the 9-to-5 to loving life. Feel free to send Radical a message at the bottom of this page
What industries are recession-proof in 2023? ›
Some recession-proof industries include healthcare, food manufacturing and supply, infant care and education, repair services, financial services, legal services and others.What is the safest job during a recession? ›
1. Healthcare Professional. Whether you're a physician, a nurse, or a hospital administrator, your job is safe during a recession. No matter the state of the economy, healthcare is an essential service.How to prepare for recession 2023? ›
- Keep debts under control. ...
- Review your tolerance for losses. ...
- Build up your liquidity. ...
- Re-evaluate your job prospects. ...
- Delay retirement if you can.
- Retail. According to economists, the retail industry is among the industries most affected by recession in 2023. ...
- Restaurant. ...
- Travel & Tourism. ...
- Real Estate. ...
Generally, the industries known to fare better during recessions are those that supply the population with essentials we cannot live without that. They include utilities, health care, consumer staples, and, in some pundits' opinions, maybe even technology.What companies thrive after a recession? ›
- Childcare. Daycare will always be in demand as long as parents need someone to care for their children while they work. ...
- Repair Services. ...
- Funeral Homes. ...
- Trash Haulers. ...
- Cigarettes and Alcohol.
While no investment is guaranteed to be recession-proof, some tend to perform better than others during downturns. These include health care and consumer staples stocks (or funds tracking those sectors), large-cap stocks and income investments.Where should I make money during a recession? ›
That said, if you have cash to invest, you may want to consider buying recession-friendly sectors such as consumer staples, utilities and healthcare. Stocks that have been paying a dividend for many years are also a good choice. These tend to be long-established companies that can withstand a downturn.What sectors will outperform in 2023? ›
- Consumer staples. ...
- Precious metals. ...
- Energy. Information. technology. Health care. Utilities.
- Real estate. Materials. Industrials. Communication. services.
- Consumer. staples. Consumer. discretionary. Financials.
Which sectors will grow in 2023? ›
With the budget coming in the beginning of 2023, the sectors that the government is looking to focus on - 1) manufacturing, 2) capital goods, 3) defence, 4) sustainability, 5) railways, 6) public sector banks are already seeing fresh investments. We expect these sectors to continue to be in the spotlight.How likely is a recession in 2023? ›
The threat of a U.S. recession remains alive in 2023. The consensus estimate on the probability of a meaningful downturn in the American economy in the next 12 months is at 65%, according to Goldman Sachs Research. But our own economic analysis rates that probability much lower, at 35%.