This Will Be the Most Important Job Skill in the Future (Hint: It’s Not Communication!)

You could make over $20,000 more per year if you have this one simple skill.

goodluz/ShutterstockIt’s true that communication is the key to success. (If Warren Buffet says so, it can’t be wrong.) Yet to turn an average past time into a life-changing career, you’ll want to learn how to code.

Experts predict that coding will be the most important skill for jobseekers in the near future. But this essential skill is no longer just for employees at Google or Apple; companies across the spectrum, from hospitals to magazines to retailers, are seeking out capable coders—and will pay big bucks for them, too.

Job market analytics firm Burning Glass reported that in 2015, occupations that required coding skills made up as many as seven million job openings alone. Programming jobs overall—including data analysts, Information Technology (IT) workers, and engineers—were growing 12 percent faster than average. Imagine what those numbers look like now.

Plus, get this: Half of all of the programming openings were found in industries outside of technology. That includes sectors like finance, manufacturing, and healthcare.

Programming languages in high demand include website-building experience in JavaScript and HTML, R and SAS for statistics, and AutoCAD engineering programs. All-purpose programming languages such as Java, Python, and C++ are valuable, too, according to the report. (Employers also look for these crucial soft skills.)

Apart from the abundant job opportunities, the pay isn’t bad, either. Jobs that require coding skills offer up to $22,000 above the average salary. And almost half of all jobs that pay above $58,000 require some coding skills, according to the report.

“For students looking to increase their potential income, few other skills open the door to as many well-paying careers,” Burning Glass researchers wrote.

Still, you’ll need a diploma before cashing in. The Burning Glass researchers found that 89 percent of coding jobs require a bachelor’s degree. Don’t have a degree? Don’t worry. There’s still significant demand for jobs that require only short-term credentials, including computer user support (help desk), engineering technicians, and drafters.

Coding wizards, you’ll definitely want to highlight this skill on your resume. But before you apply for the job, make sure you have the one thing every employer is REALLY looking for on your resume.

Source: Fast Company

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Brooke Nelson
Brooke Nelson is a researcher at PBS FRONTLINE in Boston, Massachusetts, and writes regularly about travel, health, and culture news for Reader’s Digest. Previously she was a staff writer at Reader's Digest. Her articles have also appeared on MSN, Business Insider, and Yahoo Finance, among other sites. She earned a BA in international relations from Hendrix College. Follow her on Twitter @BrookeTNelson.