Recession-proof Jobs and Careers – Do They Exist and How Can You Secure One?

Oct 12, 2022

While there are no jobs that are 100% recession-proof, there are careers that are more secure during an economic downturn compared to others. These specific jobs can provide peace of mind and keep you on a positive financial trajectory. Industries to keep in mind with recession-proof jobs include tech/software, healthcare, and skilled trades.

Lessons from the Great Recession

The Great Recession in the late 2000s is considered the most significant downturn in the economy since the Great Depression. The economic downturn began when the U.S. housing market went from boom to bust and the housing bubble burst, from 2007 to 2009. As a result, during the Great Recession unemployment rates skyrocketed and housing prices and stock portfolios plummeted. Nearly 9 million American workers lost their jobs during the Great Recession and unemployment in the U.S. peaked at 10% in late 2009. In response to the Great Recession, the federal government put in place extensive regulations on the financial system.

Some lessons of the Great Recession are:

  • Recessions are hardest on people already working to overcome barriers to opportunity and employment.
  • Recessions leave dramatically different local long-term effects.
  • It is critical for the federal government to provide stimulus packages.
  • Systems need to keep helping people until the economic recovery takes off.


Top Recession-proof Industries

The top recession-proof industries include tech/software, healthcare, and skilled trades.

  • Tech/Software/IT: Networks, databases, websites, and global communications operate around the clock and are needed regardless of a recession. Most workers in this industry remain in demand, even in an economic downturn. This includes computer systems analysts, programmers and developers, website designers, project managers, IT support professionals, IT administrators, customer service specialists, and more.
  • Healthcare: People need healthcare services regardless of how the economy is doing. Healthcare careers like nurses, physician assistants, medical technicians, and hospital administrators remain mostly untouched by recessions. We know that the Great Recession had a little negative impact on job growth in healthcare compared with its effect on the national economy. Training and pursuing a job in the healthcare field is a great way to prepare for a recession.
  • Skilled Trades: No matter the economy, everyone still needs utility services like electricity, water, sewer services, telephones, and the internet. Jobs that employ welders, HVAC technicians, electricians, carpenters, solar panel technicians, plumbers, and many more skilled trades are more likely to be recession-proof.

SkillUp’s training catalog can help you find a great training program that fits your needs and schedule to prepare you for a potential economic downturn. Earn and Learn jobs can also be extremely helpful as you prepare for a potential recession—you’ll be able to grow your job skills while earning good pay and full-time benefits. Explore some of our open Earn and Learn jobs on our website. Additionally, Sho Dewan (workhap on Instagram) is a career coach who can help you learn how to stand out and get hired for a job you love. Check out their video on recession-proof jobs here!

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