10 Common Jobs That Are Safest From AI — for Now

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Retail store manager at a clothing shop talking on the phone and taking an order while using a touchscreen laptop
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Indeed, the online jobs marketplace, is studying how artificial intelligence is affecting jobs and work.

The company recently published a report, “AI at Work,” that concludes:

“Virtually every job will face some level of exposure to potential [generative artificial intelligence]-driven change. But while GenAI can learn to do some tasks reasonably well, it is unlikely to fully replace many jobs — especially those that require manual skills and/or deep personal connections.”

For this research Indeed used ChatGPT, a free generative AI tool, to analyze job skills mentioned in roughly 55 million job postings over the past year.

ChatGPT estimates that it is proficient in about 20 out of 48 skill categories that Indeed identified, with four of those being to an “excellent” level. Indeed used this information to search for commonly posted jobs that rely heavily on skills at which ChatGPT would not generally perform well.

What follows are commonly posted jobs that are least likely to be replaced by artificial intelligence. Our data on pay and predicted job growth are from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Store manager

Retail stores manager or sales assistant working in a technology or electronics store
ORION PRODUCTION / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $82,540

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 4%

Store managers are about 18% of a larger BLS category called sales managers. Store managers oversee sales that take place between a retail store and its customers.

For the Indeed report, ChatGPT describes its own strengths and weaknesses in retail work:

“Even though ChatGPT is versed in the theories and principles of retail, it doesn’t have actual on-the-ground experience in a retail environment … ChatGPT can provide knowledge but it lacks the experiential wisdom that comes from real-world retail work.”

Maintenance technician

Male electrician at a construction site
Amorn Suriyan / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $44,980

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 4%

Becoming a maintenance technician can be a good path to reliable work. Aspiring students can learn basic skills in high school shop classes or technical education classes, postsecondary trade or vocational schools, or community colleges.

You could train further to become an electrician, heating and air-conditioning mechanic or plumber.

Good hand-eye coordination and dexterity and a knack for troubleshooting problems are crucial. Customer-service skills are important, too.

Restaurant manager

Businesswoman opening her business for the day
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $59,600

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 0% (no growth predicted)

Restaurant manager jobs are part of the BLS food service manager category. Jobs in this field overall are expected to have flat percentage growth, with an increase in total numbers from 357,500 in 2022 to 359,200 in 2032. The BLS explains:

“… more dining establishments are expected to rely on chefs and head cooks instead of hiring additional food service managers, which should limit employment growth in this occupation.”

And yet, for people with specific abilities and interests, restaurant management can be good work. You’ll need skill at customer service, communication, business, leadership, organization and problem solving.

And one more thing: It takes physical stamina for restaurant managers to stay on their feet at work.

Nursing assistant

Hispanic Nurse
Burlingham / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $35,760

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 4%

The hiring of nursing assistants is expected to grow by 4%, or 56,500 new hires, for a total of around 1,417,800 such jobs by 2032.

It’s not difficult to imagine why hands-on jobs in the medical field will stay in demand, despite AI. As Indeed’s report says:

“A GenAI nurse can help diagnose an illness, but can’t insert an IV or console a worried family.”

Licensed practical nurse

Nurse
GagliardiImages / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $54,620

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 5%

The BLS pay data for licensed practical nurses includes licensed vocational nurses.

Although the median pay (half earn more, half earn less) for these workers is $54,620, those with paychecks in the lowest 10% earned under $40,490 a year. Earnings for workers in the highest 10% topped $72,650 annually.

Registered nurse

nurses
Spotmatik Ltd / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $81,220

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 6%

The job growth predicted for registered nurses — 6% — is faster than the average for all types of jobs.

Almost 60% of registered nurses work in a hospital. Other settings where registered nurses commonly are hired include ambulatory health care, nursing and residential care facilities, government and education.

RNs working in government settings top the pay scale, earning a median annual wage of $92,310.

The highest-paid 10% of registered nurses earned $129,400 in 2022.

Server

fast food worker minimum wage
BalanceFormCreative / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $29,120

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: -3%

The trend toward carryout food and self-service technology such as kiosks that let customers order and pay for their food is reducing the need for waiters and waitresses.

Many restaurants, cafes and other establishments will keep using wait staff to serve their customers. Hard as the advent of AI is on the human workforce, there remain plenty of jobs that require a human touch and human capabilities.

Indeed’s study concludes:

“Ultimately, GenAI is more likely to remain only decent (at best) at performing most tasks, rather than truly masterful, and is currently bad at more skills than it is good at.”

Cook

restaurant owner with chef in kitchen
Jacob Lund / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $30,910

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 6%

The work outlook for cooks is complex.

Jobs for cooks in the fast-food industry are predicted to shrink by 14%. The number of cooks employed in private homes and in short-order jobs is expected to fall by 6%.

But the number of cooks hired by restaurants will grow by an estimated 20%, more than making up for other job losses in the field.

Cooks appear set to remain an important part of the workforce. Indeed’s report finds:

“A GenAI chef can help refine a recipe or translate a menu, but it can’t chop an onion or garnish a dessert.”

Caregiver

Old woman playing chess, with caregiver helping
JPC-PROD / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $30,180

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 22%

Caregivers — including home health and personal care aides — work in a fast-growing field.

Home health and personal care aides monitor and care for patients with chronic illnesses or disabilities. These workers help their patients accomplish the necessary activities of their daily lives.

This is not a highly paid field. Those making the lowest 10% of pay earned less than $22,500 in 2022. The highest-paid 10% made over $38,350.

The growth in the U.S. elderly population is a big part of the expansion in this field. According to the BLS, long-term care that previously was done in nursing homes is moving to homes and community-based settings. This change is creating more jobs.

Truck driver

Man driving a tractor-trailer truck
welcomia / Shutterstock.com

Median annual pay for this type of job: $49,920

Predicted job growth from 2022 to 2032: 4%

Despite efforts to develop driverless vehicles, truck drivers — specifically heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers — aren’t going away any time soon, Indeed finds.

In fact, Indeed says that driving may be the occupation most insulated from AI.

Indeed’s report notes:

“Driving roles face the lowest potential exposure to skills GenAI could reasonably replace or augment, while software development roles face the highest potential exposure.”

Most of the freight in this country is hauled by trucks, according to the BLS. As spending by businesses and households grows, the demand for drivers to transport those goods is predicted to increase.

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