How to Get a High Paying Job

find a high paying job

Many careers only become financially rewarding after you have years of job experience. Money isn’t everything, but it’s normal to want to feel fairly compensated for your work. If you’re looking for a lucrative job without much work experience, then you’ll need to learn how to spot and secure those positions. You may be surprised they include some of the highest paying tech jobs, like web developers and data scientists.

Highest Paying Jobs to Consider With Little Work Experience

Even if you don’t have much experience in your chosen field, there are quite a few jobs that -- with the right skill set — can be very lucrative. Here are a few high-paying jobs to consider aiming for, even if you don’t have years of experience.

Web Developer

When it comes to web design, it’s not about how long you’ve been on the job, it’s about what you can do. The starting salary for an entry level web developer can be as high as $72,424 because you don’t need job experience to hit the ground running when hired.

Web developers usually work as part of a broader collaborative effort with clients, developers, and artists. That means communication skills, interpersonal skills, and teamwork can be as important as knowing how to code.

Data Scientist

People are collecting unprecedented amounts of data every day. Data scientists build predictive models out of the data to help identify problems and answer questions. Jobs like this require the motivation and work ethic to take-on complicated problems while working independently, and the communication skills to translate complex findings into simple speech. With a strong background in math and statistics, entry-level data positions for data scientists pay anywhere from $76,000 to $100,000.

Claims Adjuster

Claims adjusters investigate insurance claims. Adjusters sort criminals from victims, and help victims get the money they need to fix their problem. Between reporting your discoveries and regular interaction with customers, you will need problem solving skills, work ethic, teamwork, and strong communication. Skills like this can be developed with little-to-no work experience, and this is just one of the many careers in insurance you can get with an Associate degree. An entry-level claims adjuster can quickly find themselves enjoying a median salary of $63,670.

For more examples of insurance careers suited to you, check out our Career Wizard tool.

How To Find A High Paying Job With No Experience

You don’t need to be a mathematical wizard or a web designer to find a high paying job without experience. Employers want hard skills like math and coding, but they also want soft skills, such as leadership and communication. Soft skills can be particularly important when two candidates have similar experience or when hard skills can be learned on the job.

Soft Skills Can Mean All The Difference

It’s hard to teach someone a leadership skill or positive attitude, which is why soft skills are so highly-regarded among employers. According to Deloitte’s Global Human Capital Trends report, soft skills are a critical priority for 92% of executives. There are dozens of different soft skills, but you’ll want to focus on those most relevant to the jobs you’re seeking. On that list, you’ll be sure to find communication, leadership, and a willingness to learn new things.

  • Communication (Written, Verbal, and Non-Verbal)
    When LinkedIn published a list of the most in-demand soft skills on their site, communication came up at number one. This includes listening, verbal, written, and non-verbal communication. Naturally, the best way to practice communication is by doing it. You can start improving your writing by proofreading everything you create. Nobody is fond of proofreading, but you only have the chance to learn from your mistakes if you catch them. Be sure to practice listening as well, which involves investing yourself in an interaction, seeing another person's perspective, and making the other person feel heard.
  • A Love of Learning
    Learning is supposed to be a life-long process. Successful people continue to learn and keep pace with a changing world, and employers know it. Recent research found 30% of executives claim willingness to keep learning is the most important characteristic of a successful employee. You can show a willingness to learn by continuing your education with a certification, getting involved in volunteering, or keeping your thumb on the pulse of an industry by joining a trade association.
  • Leadership Skills
    Leadership is another soft skill that’s always in high demand, but it’s actually composed of several soft skills. Leaders need resilience in the face of a challenge, to motivate others, and build relationships with their team. In other words, taking on a leadership role helps you develop communication, teamwork, and interpersonal skills. You can become a better leader by practicing these components individually.

Prove Your (Soft) Skills

But claiming you have these skills isn’t enough.

Reflecting on their job search, one recent graduate found it’s pointless to claim you have soft skills you can’t prove. “Saying you’re a quick learner or have excellent oral communication skills are basically a waste of air - these are promises you are making, not statements of fact people can confirm.”

Rather than make promises, develop your skills in a way that allows you to demonstrate you have them. You may be able to practice being a leader without leading, but you won’t be able to show that you’re a leader without taking on a leadership role. Focus on developing skills you can demonstrate, and how you can achieve that.

And when you’re practicing your soft skills, follow the advice of recent graduate programmers: “You can't develop social skills from reading books, and talking in the mirror only gets you so far.” If you want your soft skills to land you a job, then keep in mind that reading books and articles can only do so much. At the end of the day, you need to practice. Many soft skills are obtained over time, and many soft skills are perishable if you don’t use them.