What is a job field? (Plus how to choose your ideal job)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 24 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

It's often easier and more beneficial to choose a job when you know your options. There are numerous job fields, each with different roles and work opportunities. Learning about different job fields helps you locate employment opportunities that suit your abilities, talents and qualifications. In this article, we explore 'What is a job field?' review the importance of job fields, look at some common examples and discuss how to choose your ideal job.

What is a job field?

To answer 'What is a job field', it describes an area or category of jobs that share certain similarities. This can help people who are looking for work better understand different job roles and their requirements. It can also help people narrow down their employment options and select a career path that best suits their qualifications since each job field has unique qualifications and responsibilities that it demands from its employees.

Once you know the job field that best matches your skills and interests, you can research the positions in that field to determine which roles are most suitable for you. You can explore your options by applying to any job openings within your field that you qualify for. Learning about the typical responsibilities in your desired job field may also influence your decision. Here are a few ways that job fields are important:

  • they categorise similar jobs

  • they help candidates to know which jobs their qualifications enable them to do

  • they help candidates streamline their options when job searching

Examples of common job fields

Here are some examples of common job fields:

Architecture and engineering

Individuals in the architecture and engineering field focus on designing, creating and building eye-pleasing and functional structures. Most positions in this field demand certain educational qualifications including a degree in a specific or related subject area. Examples of jobs in this field include:

  • civil engineer

  • architect

  • mechanical engineer

  • landscape architect

  • structural engineer

Related: What does an architect do? (Responsibilities explained)

Education

The field of education focuses on disseminating knowledge to others. While teachers make up a large portion of this field, there are also other managerial or administrative positions in education. Here are some job examples:

  • school principal

  • teacher

  • librarian

  • counsellor

  • professor or lecturer

Related: How to get teaching experience (plus benefits of doing so)

Science and technology

The fields of science and technology are broad with many career options. Your specific field of study may help you to narrow down your options, as most of these jobs demand special requirements. Scientific or technological roles may require some knowledge of computer science or complex mathematics. Here are examples of jobs in science and technology:

  • laboratory technician

  • physicist

  • microbiologist

  • software engineer

  • IT personnel

Related: 10 examples of careers in STEM (with definitions and types)

Health and medicine

The healthcare field consists of jobs that involve caring for the sick and recovering. This field forms an essential part of society, as these professionals handle the lives and well-being of individuals. Most positions in this field require a certification or licence. Examples of jobs in this field include:

  • nurse

  • physical therapist

  • physician's assistant

  • doctor

  • veterinarian

Related: Careers in health care (and their roles and specialisations)

Business administration and management

This field is ideal for those interested in running businesses or being part of a business firm. These jobs may involve communicating with customers and colleagues and selling products. People who work in this field typically keep records, organise documents and do other tasks. They may work in an office environment or a retail store. Examples of jobs in this field include:

  • secretary

  • sales representative

  • marketing assistant

  • human resource manager

  • entrepreneur

  • accountant

Related: 11 different types of marketing fields to consider

Communication

Jobs in the communication field require sharing information through different means with the public. This may include written, audio or video content. The goal is to attract an audience and make them read, listen and watch the content. The ability to conduct adequate research can help to perform jobs in this field. Here are some examples of communication jobs:

  • copywriter

  • journalist

  • social media manager

  • brand manager

  • public relations specialist

Related: 10 fulfilling top jobs for a communication graduate

Arts and entertainment

This field covers a wide range of job options. It involves expressing different ideas and stories through various creative means. While some positions may require educational qualifications, there are others that only require talent or skills that you can teach yourself. Jobs in this field include:

  • songwriter or singer

  • actor

  • graphic designer

  • art curator

  • filmmaker

  • photographer

  • fashion designer

Related: Web design vs. graphic design: definition and differences

How to choose a job field

A job or career choice is an important decision that greatly influences your life. Knowing appropriate potential jobs for you may save you some unnecessary stress. Here are some things to consider before pursuing a job in a specific field:

1. Evaluate yourself

It's beneficial to take some time to think before making a decision. The same logic also applies to choosing a job. Think about the work you want to do, the environment you prefer to work in and the responsibilities you can handle. It may help to ask yourself a few questions and answer them. After completing some self-evaluation, it may become clearer which job suits you best.

Related: How To Create a Personal SWOT Analysis in 5 Steps

2. Determine your non-negotiables

When deciding which job field is right for you, it's beneficial to specify what things or conditions you require in a job, since you're unwilling to compromise on these things. One way to do this is to write a list of your non-negotiables. This helps narrow down your job options and eliminate those that aren't a good fit for you. For instance, you may want a job that has a salary within a specific range. You would then know not to pursue any job opportunities that have a salary outside of this range.

3. List some potential jobs you like

Some job titles may not give a clear description of their responsibilities. Write out those titles and do your best to understand them better. In doing so, you may determine additional positions that are a good match for you and your skill set.

It may help to ask your friends and family members about jobs you admire and their experience with work. You can ask their opinion about which jobs they think may be a good fit for you. Also, think of industries that interest you and which responsibilities you would want to perform in such establishments.

Related: I don't know what career I want: how to choose the right job

4. Research and streamline your list

After exploring some job options that may suit you, perform more detailed research. This process narrows your options down to two or three serious possibilities that fit most of your job requirements. Here are a few things to consider when streamlining your list of options:

  • Daily responsibilities. Researching the daily responsibilities of a job helps learn the descriptions and common responsibilities they handle. You can often find helpful videos online for different jobs or professions, and it may help to spend the day with a person you know in your desired profession, as that provides a clearer picture of how people operate the office.

  • Salary. If you desire a specific salary, it may help to research the average compensation for the jobs you prefer. This knowledge may influence your final decision.

  • Job requirements. Every job has unique requirements. Learning the requested certifications and training for potential job opportunities may help you narrow down your job options.

5. Get training and update your CV

Once you have finalised your list, you can determine if your current qualifications are enough to obtain your desired job or if you could benefit from more training. You may choose to take a temporary job and pursue higher training that better qualifies you for your preferred job. Some jobs may train you while working and others may demand that you meet all their qualifications. Review job postings before applying for a job, know the education and experience each job requires and update your CV accordingly.

Related: How to update your CV: a complete guide with helpful steps

6. Find jobs and apply

Now that you know what job fields you find most desirable, you can send applications to companies or organisations searching for employees to fill your position of interest. You may search for job opportunities online or ask friends and family to inform you of any available opportunities. Organise your CV to suit your job application. Also, you can employ the services of a professional to help you edit your CV.

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