Ohio’s Top Industries

On Rivet, we’ve talked a lot about the open, well-paying jobs in Ohio’s top industries, but what exactly are Ohio’s top industries? We’ve broken down some of the largest and fastest-growing sectors in Ohio. Each industry has its own unique careers and skills — and we’d like to share them with you!

1. Agriculture

Everybody eats. The Ohio agricultural industry boasts over 540,000 jobs, and as we learned in Chris Dible’s episode, these jobs are much more than just farming. Agricultural careers can range from sales to engineering, to food science and more. Due to a large skills gap among Ohio workers, however, 20,000 of these jobs remain unfilled.

Possible Careers:
  • Service Technician: Like Chris, some people prefer the hands-on work and systematic thinking that comes with maintaining agricultural equipment. Service technician positions are expected to increase over the next five years.
    • Qualifications: Two-year certification program
    • Skills & interests: Logical, enjoy hands-on work like assembling and repairing things
  • Agricultural Salesperson: Are you a people-person with a penchant for nature? Agricultural salespeople provide livestock equipment, animal health products and feed to farmers in need.
    • Qualifications: Generally does not require a four-year degree
    • Skills & interests: Good communicator, persistent, enjoy working with people
  • Agriculture or Food Science Technician: These technicians provide detailed, analytical work to maintain food quality standards — essential for public safety and disease prevention.
    • Qualifications: Associate’s degree in a related field like biology, chemistry or animal science
    • Skills & interests: Organized, observant, methodical
  • Rail Transportation Worker: Agricultural rail transportation workers bustle produce, livestock and equipment across the country. Ohio is one of the largest employers of rail transportation workers in the U.S., with an average annual wage of $61,480.
    • Qualifications: High school diploma and moderate on-the-job training
    • Skills & interests: Independent, good communicator, comfortable with long periods of travel

2. Insurance

Remember Jake from State Farm (with the khakis)? Though your perceptions of insurance may be limited to advertisements and your monthly bill, insurance actually has several lucrative career opportunities. Home to 245 different insurance companies, Ohio is the seventh largest employer of insurance workers in the nation. With the rapid retirement of insurance employees (50% expected to retire by 2025), approximately 2,617 insurance jobs open up every year.

Possible Careers:
  • Customer Service Representative: These representatives interact with customers on a daily basis, handling complaints, managing orders and answering questions. Entry-level positions come with myriad opportunities for advancement.
    • Qualifications: High school diploma
    • Skills & interests: Patient, enjoy working with people, good listener
  • Auto Damage Appraiser: Auto appraisers inspect and evaluate vehicle damage and adjust claims accordingly—perfect if you’re interested in some mild detective work! The work is not only rewarding, but well-paid, with a median annual wage of $65,900.
    • Qualifications: Technical school or community college courses on damage appraisal and cost estimation
    • Skills & interests: Observant, investigative, good negotiator, mathematical
  • Insurance Sales Agent: These positions are growing two times faster than average. Although a bachelor’s degree is not required, employers tend to prefer candidates with some business, finance or public-speaking experience.
    • Qualifications: Sales license (obtained by completing specified courses and passing a state exam)
    • Skills & interests: Self-confident, good public speaker, initiative
  • Underwriting Assistant: Underwriters weigh insurance application risks and decide whether or not to provide coverage, but they can’t do it alone. Enter the underwriting assistant. Skilled with document management, underwriting rules and scheduling, these assistants offer support with a variety of daily tasks.
    • Qualifications: High school diploma
    • Skills & interests: Organized, attentive, detail-oriented

3. Healthcare

Healthcare jobs continue to be in high demand. As the population grows and ages, we’ll need more workers to fill the gap in employment. Job growth in this sector is expected to reach 14%, with 2,000-2,800 job openings per year. Since healthcare encompasses a variety of different careers, workers can easily find jobs suited to their needs and interests.

Possible Careers:
  • Health Information Technician: Health information technicians are concerned with the quality, accuracy and accessibility of medical records. Job opportunities open up every day, as health information technician positions are growing much faster than average.
    • Qualifications: Postsecondary certificate or an associate’s degree to gain a management position
    • Skills & interests: Customer service, multi-tasking, good with computers
  • Medical Biller: Most of us have been the recipient of a staggering medical bill at one point or another, all thanks to your local billing clerk! (Just kidding.) In actuality, medical billers provide a crucial service reviewing documents, calculating fees and generating bills.
    • Qualifications: High school diploma
  • EMT or Paramedic: Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics fill the constant need for emergency services, which is only expected to increase with the growth of middle-aged and older populations.
    • Qualfications: A year or less of postsecondary education for EMTs, though paramedics often require longer training
  • Dental Hygienist: Jobs in the dental field are growing much faster than average, and hygienists can expect to make an average of $74,820 per year (if you can stand the sight of chewed up food, that is). Prospective workers typically study at community colleges, universities or career technical schools.
    • Qualifications: Associate’s degree and a license from the Board of Dental Examiners
    • Skills & interests: Dexterous, meticulous, good with people


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