15 High-Demand Jobs That Pay More Than $50 an Hour

From the tech industry to sales management, these 15 jobs pay over $100K a year.
Updated April 11, 2024
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Talk of AI replacing workers and tech industry layoffs may be making the job market seem bleak.

However, many high-paying jobs across the U.S. are still projected to be in high demand for decades to come.

If you’re looking to get ahead financially, these 15 jobs pay a median hourly wage of at least $50 and aren’t expected to disappear anytime soon.

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Software developer

peopleimages.com/Adobe coding and information technology with computer screen and tablet

Developers design computer apps or programs and may also have a role in assessing quality and identifying problems with existing software.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that developers make an average of $124,200 per year or $59.71 per hour. Demand for developers is also expected to grow 25% between 2022 and 2032.

Financial manager

Rido/Adobe mature couple meeting financial advisor for investment

Financial managers are involved in creating financial and/or investment reports and developing long-term plans for their organizations.

These professionals make an average of $139,790 per year or $67.21 per hour. The BLS projects 69,600 job openings for financial managers annually over the next decade.

Marketing manager

Azeemud-Deen Jacobs/peopleimages.com/Adobe meeting to explain business strategy

Marketing managers plan programs and campaigns to generate interest and attract customers to products or services. According to the BLS, job growth is projected to be 6% between 2022 and 2032.

If you can land a management gig at a marketing or advertising firm, your average pay could be around $138,730 per year or $66.70 per hour.

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HR manager

pressmaster/Adobe HR manager sitting at office desk while conducting interview

Human resources workers are employed across many industries and often coordinate administrative tasks (onboarding new hires, managing benefits, etc.) for their company.

Landing an HR management role can be a lucrative gig, with the BLS noting that these workers make an average of $130,000 per year or $62.50 per hour.

Demand for HR managers is expected to remain steady over the next decade, with the BLS projecting about 15,500 job openings per year through 2032.

Chemical engineer

pichitstocker/Adobe production operator adjusts flow rate of corrosion

The demand for chemical engineers is expected to grow quickly over the decade, and it can be a lucrative career for science buffs.

These engineers typically work in offices or labs but may also perform work or monitor at industrial plants, refineries, and other on-site locations.

The average pay for chemical engineers is $106,260 per year or $51.09 per hour, and employment is expected to grow 8% between 2022 and 2032.

Nurse practitioner

Rido/Adobe doctor and nurse discussing medical report at clinic

If you’re looking to enter the healthcare profession, nurse practitioners are expected to be in extremely high demand over the decade, with BLS estimating projected job growth at 38%.

Nurse practitioners care for patients directly and work in various healthcare settings, including doctor’s offices, hospitals, and clinics.

The average salary for a nurse practitioner is about $125,900 per year or $60.53 per hour.

PR manager

pressmaster/Adobe businesswoman working in public relations talking on phone making notes

Public relations (PR) is a well-paying industry projected to grow steadily over the next decade. PR managers work to create or enhance the public image of the company or a specific client they work for.

On average, they make about $125,620 per year or $60.40 per hour. Employment for PR managers is expected to grow 6% between 2022 and 2032, with more than 7,800 job openings each year.

Political scientist

David/Adobe woman working with laptop thinking of professional plan

If you’re interested in politics and government, a career as a political scientist can be both lucrative and fulfilling.

They study political systems, which may include campaigns, elections, foreign relations, reform, and other topics related to politics. Some also work for politicians or teach at universities.

The average pay for political scientists is $128,020 per year or $61.55 per hour, and job growth is expected to be about 7% over the decade.

Physician assistant

stokkete/Adobe doctors examining patient's medical records

Physician assistants (PAs) work under the supervision of a doctor to provide care to patients in different healthcare settings, including primary care offices, hospitals, and specialty care offices.

Like nurse practitioners, PAs' pay and demand are expected to stay high. The average salary is about $126,010 per year or $60.58 per hour.

The BLS projects that employment will grow a whopping 27% through 2032, equating to nearly 12,200 job openings every year.

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Sales manager

gzorgz/Adobe businesswoman sitting at office desk making call

Sales managers direct company sales teams and can make lucrative careers for themselves — though exactly how lucrative naturally depends on what they sell.

According to BLS data, sales managers make an average of $130,600 per year or $62.79 per hour.

Projected job growth is at 4%, but this relatively low number still equates to about 43,200 expected job openings annually through 2032.


Jacob Lund/Adobe pharmacist dealing with a customer

The pharmaceutical industry is another high-paying sector within the healthcare field. Pharmacists typically get prescriptions to patients and offer guidance on properly using medications.

On average, pharmacists make about $132,750 per year or $63.82 per hour.

The BLS projects that employment for pharmacists will only grow about 3% from 2022 to 2032, with 13,400 projected job openings annually.


LIGHTFIELD STUDIOS/Adobe Lawyer and client

Lawyers can work in many settings, including private practices, corporate offices, or federal or local governments.

While lawyers require a bit more schooling than some of the others on the list, they typically make high salaries: an average of $135,740 per year or $65.26 per hour.

Job growth is expected to be around 8% from 2022 to 2032, equating to 39,100 job openings each year.


sofiko14/Adobe young female patient examined by male dentist

Dentistry is another high-demand track in the medical field. With projected job growth of 4% between 2022 and 2032, there will be about 5,100 job openings per year.

Dentists diagnose and treat problems with teeth or the general mouth area. They also tend to make a lot of money, with an average yearly salary of $159,530 or $76.70 per hour.

Computer hardware engineer

VadimGuzhva/Adobe two men with motherboards and tools on wooden table

Another great and lucrative gig for the tech-savvy is working as a computer hardware engineer.

These engineers research, design, and help develop computer systems and components. They may also be involved in testing these systems.

The average salary is $132,360 per year or $63.64 per hour. Job growth for computer hardware engineers is expected to be around 5% over the next decade, equalling 4,600 job openings annually.


JD8/Adobe businessman working with graphs and charts

Those who are good with numbers may want to consider a career as an actuary, which involves using data, statistics, and other tools to analyze costs and risks associated with certain events.

Actuaries may work for insurance companies or financial firms and make an average of $113,990 per year on average or $54.80 per hour. Employment is expected to grow by 23% through 2032.

Bottom line

Monkey Business/Adobe mixed group of students in class

While many of the high-paying jobs on this list require some schooling, others may suit those with experience or high-value skills.

If you’re looking to stop living paycheck to paycheck and change to a more lucrative role, consider schooling and/or certification before making the jump.

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Author Details

Laura Gesualdi-Gilmore Laura Gesualdi-Gilmore is a seasoned freelance writer who also teaches writing courses at Rutgers University. She's based in Jersey City and enjoys travel, live music and, of course, spending quality time with her pup.

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