The COVID-19 pandemic upended the U.S. economy and job market. As the economy begins to recover from the effects, the job market remains tight, according to The Washington Post. Employers desperate to attract new workers have increased wages and began offering mid-year bonuses.

  • The U.S. has a record 9.3 million job openings, according to a report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Tuesday.
  • Interestingly, in May, about 9.3 million workers remained unemployed, according to a previous report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics per The Washington Post.

Here are a few of the most surprising jobs currently in demand.


Interest in pet adoptions skyrocketed during last year’s lockdowns, said The Washington Post. Now, veterinarians are struggling to keep up with the demands of new pet owners across the country.

  • Employment at veterinary clinics remains down compared to pre-pandemic levels but salaries have increased 16% since the start of the pandemic, said The Washington Post.
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Small business jobs (especially for teenagers)

When pandemic layoffs began, teenage workers and small businesses were hit particularly hard. Unemployment levels among teenagers rose to 30% reported CNN. Now, however, teenage workers have a strong advantage.

  • Teenagers typically face fewer health concerns when returning to work and are less impacted by shortages in child care, said CNN. This makes them attractive workers even for short periods of time.

Small businesses have a niche need for teenager workers. Many adults who previously worked at small businesses may have moved on to work for larger companies during the pandemic, said CNN.

Sawmill workers

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a surge in demand for lumber, reports Deseret News. More people have begun building homes or remodeling homes — all demanding more lumber.

Record lumber prices dragging homebuyers and renovators to the woodshed
  • To meet this demand and cash in on profits, sawmills have desperately pushed to attract more workers, according to The Washington Post.
  • Paychecks for sawmill workers have increased over 10% since pre-pandemic salaries but employment rates have just recently returned to the same pre-pandemic level, reported The Washington Post.

Competition for workers in the tight job market is expected to continue into the summer and will depend on the presence or absence of further stimulus checks, said The Washington Post.