Five jobs with excellent career progression

Searching for a job with great career progression?

With a variety of different career paths on offer, it isn’t always easy to work out which one will work out best for you in the long run.

But no matter what industry you’re in, there are always some jobs that offer more opportunities to move forward than others – and they might not necessarily be the ones you expect.

To point you in the right direction, here are five jobs that boast excellent career progression:


1. Actuary

An Actuary use their in-depth mathematical knowledge to analyse data and evaluates financial risks, in order to provide strategic advice for companies, public bodies, and government departments.

Although the initial requirements do take some time to complete (supported study whilst working as a trainee takes 3-6 years), you’ll then be given the opportunity to take your qualifications to an advanced level, or specialise in a specific field, such as consultancy, investments, life assurance, general insurance, pensions or reinsurance.

As a fully qualified Actuary, you’ll be able to move on quickly to more advanced roles in management. And if this isn’t for you, it’s also possible to branch out into product development, marketing and senior sales roles, as well as pursue particular areas of interest such as genetics, energy supply or climate change.

Salary expectations: As a trainee, you could earn up to £25,000 as a starting salary (whilst still studying). This could rise to as much as £185,000 if you progress to a board level position.

What you’ll need to get started: A degree in any field, provided you have strong skills in numeracy.

Possible career progression: Actuary Trainee >> Actuary >> Senior Actuary >> Chief Risk Officer

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How to become an Actuary>>

2. Audiologist

An Audiologist diagnoses and treats patients who have problems with their hearing or balance. They work with both adults and children to improve their difficulties through the use of hearing aids, lip reading, and assistive listening devices.

You’ll need a relevant degree (involving work-based training) to get started but, once completed, you’ll be able to register as a fully qualified Audiologist. From there, you’ll have the opportunity to continually expand on your skills by taking part in ongoing professional development activities.

Once you’ve built up a good level of experience, you’ll be able to move up to a Team Manager position, then onto Principal or Consultant Scientist roles (specialising in audiology).

Your role could be based in an ear, nose, and throat department, either working for the NHS or privately. You could then specialise in balance, implants, paediatrics, or auditory rehabilitation.

However, if these areas don’t suit you, you’ll alternatively be able to take on a research or teaching based role at a University.

Salary expectations: A trainee Audiologist earns around £25,000, rising up to £40,000 as a Healthcare Scientist specialising in audiology. Principal and Consultant Scientist could earn up to £98,000.

What you’ll need to get started: You’ll need at least five GCSEs A-C (including Maths, Science, and English) as well as three A-levels (one science subject) to qualify for the NHS training programme.

Possible career progression: Audiologist >> Healthcare Scientist (Audiology) >> Team Manager >> Principal/Consultant Scientist

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3. HR Assistant

An HR Assistant handles a variety of administrative and clerical duties and provides general support to the HR team, assisting with the day-to-day running of the department. They use their excellent people skills as well as their knowledge of policies and procedures to handle all things employee-related.

There is a large amount of career progression on offer as an HR Assistant, and moving up within the industry as well as the ability to explore different areas of HR becomes available with experience.

Once you’re an experienced HR Assistant, you’ll have the opportunity to advance to roles on an advisory level, through to management and consultancy. As HR includes a range of areas such as learning and development, and recruitment, the option of branching out into one of these specific fields is also a possibility.

And, as most organisations have an HR department, your job prospects are wide and varied.

Salary expectations: Salaries start at around £16,000 for HR Assistants, but could rise to £60,000+ if you eventually move on to become a Director.

What you’ll need to get started: There are no specific entry requirements to become an HR Assistant, although previous experience admin and/or accredited CIPD qualifications could improve your employability.

Possible career progression: HR Assistant >> HR Advisor >> HR Manager >> HR Director

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How to become an HR Assistant>>

4. Sales Executive

A Sales Executive works within an organisation to sell its products or services. They do this by using their skills in negotiation and communication, combined with an excellent knowledge of the business, to build and maintain working relationships with clients.

The role is often an entry-level position, and on-the-job training will be given to new starters. To support your development, continuing training will be provided throughout your career to ensure your progression is on track.

Career progression generally coincides with experience and an ongoing level of success within an organisation. Once you’ve proven yourself, you’ll be able to easily progress to senior roles, and then onto team leader and management positions.

As a sales department exists within most industries, you’ll have the ability to choose to work in a specific field or area you’re interested in or knowledgeable about.

Salary expectations: Basic starting salaries usually average at £18,000, plus commission, and experienced sales people can earn over £50,000.

What you’ll need to get started: Specific entry requirements will depend on the field you’re looking to go into – but a good standard of education is normally required.

Possible career progression: Sales Executive >> Senior Sales Executive >> Sales Team Leader >> Sales Manager

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5. Web Developer

A Web Developer designs, creates, and maintains web pages, taking into account both the appearance and the functionality of the site. Skills in programming are essential, but their specific duties will be dependent on the clients’ needs.

You can join the web developing world through a graduate training scheme, or become a Junior Developer. From there, you’ll be given on-the-job training which will provide you with a working knowledge of various web development programmes.

Specialist areas include: graphic design, user experience, interactive design, front-end development, and information architecture. Once you’ve chosen the area of work you’re most strong at, you’ll have the ability to take on higher profile clients, become a project leader or a consultant, or even become self-employed.

Best of all, as web development skills are in high demand in many industries, you’ll be able to use your expertise across various different sectors.

Salary expectations: A Junior Web Developer could earn around £22,000 initially, and this could rise to over £45,000 if you decide to become a Lead Web Developer.

What you’ll need to get started: A degree in an IT based subject may be required, but is not essential. You could also be considered with other IT qualifications, provided you have excellent web development skills and a familiarity of specialist systems.

Possible career progression: Junior Web Developer >> Web Developer >> Lead Web Developer >> Technology Director

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How to become a Web Developer>>


Want to learn how push your career in the right direction? Read our five tips to guarantee career progression