According to a recent survey by career website FlexJobs, an overwhelming majority of parents (96%) say having a traditional full-time job conflicts with important parts of taking care of their families.
Finding the right job as a working parent is no easy task. It can be hard to juggle a family and a job, but the good news is that there are jobs that make it easier for parents to balance life and work while earning a decent income. Some jobs can offer flexible hours and even work-from-home opportunities.
Creative and knowledge-based fields like education, design, writing and information technology provide the most flexibility, whereas positions that require a consistent physical presence offer the least.
Here are the 8 best family-friendly careers based on flexible options, high earnings and expected job growth:
Tax Accountant: Tax accountants prepare tax returns and reports for individuals and businesses. They must stay up-to-date with tax issues and regulations and possess good technical skills. While tax accountants can work for companies, they can also work independently from home as a contractor or business owner, allowing them the flexibility to choose clients and create their own schedules. Tax accountant jobs are expected to increase over the next few years, so this is a hot career field to pursue.
How to land the job: While a bachelor’s degree is the minimum requirement for tax accountants, many accountants pursue master’s programs in accounting (with a focus in taxes). Accountants must be licensed as Certified Public Accountants to begin work – this license varies by state, but typically requires some post-BA coursework.
Median Pay: $50,000
Physician Assistant: A physician assistant conducts physical exams, diagnoses and treats illnesses, assists in surgery, and performs a number of other duties under the supervision of a physician. This job is ideal for parents who are interested in pursuing a career in medicine but don’t have the time or money to invest in four years of medical school and years of residency. While this can be a stressful job and requires some formal education, it is also a high-paying job that is currently in demand.
How to land the job: Physician assistants must complete a 2-3 year PA master’s program.
Median Pay: $92,000
Personal Trainer: Many parents leave the workforce for a time, but some never stop hitting the gym. If you’re a fitness fanatic, maybe it’s time to turn your passion into a career. You can customize one-on-one or group programs to help other people accomplish their health goals. You can also develop weight training, cardio and nutrition programs either as a self-employed trainer or as an employee of a fitness center. Whether working for a gym or yourself, there are additional courses and certifications you can take as a trainer that will increase your chances of landing more clients and making more money. Many gyms also offer on-site child care so you maybe able to bring your kids with you while you train.
How to land the job: Some gyms require a bachelor’s degree plus certifications
Median Pay: $53,000
Online Adjunct Faculty: Online adjunct faculty Instruct and manage online course activities and assignments. As the fields of distance education and eLearning grow, so too does the number of college-level jobs and need for online faculty. And many of these jobs—offered at both online colleges and brick-and-mortar universities–are home based and/or part time. Most of these positions also offer telecommuting and flexible schedules.
How to land the job: Most require a bachelor’s, master’s, or PhD.
Median Pay: $54,000 per year
Public Relations Specialist: A PR specialist promotes their clients to the public using marketing and media strategies. PR specialists work with many kinds of organizations, including health care institutions, educational services, start-ups, high tech, and government agencies. Because many PR specialists work on a contract basis, parents can create their own schedules and choose to take on as many or as few clients as they want.
How to land the job: There are no specific educational requirements for a PR specialist however, most have college degrees (often in public relations, advertising, or marketing). Look for a PR job in an industry with which you are familiar and have some contacts.
Median Pay: $55,000
Web Developer: Web developers are programmers who specialize in creating web-based applications. This job is in particularly high demand due to the number of applications on smartphones and other electronic devices. While web developers can work for large corporations, government agencies, or start-ups, many work from home and are self-employed. As a freelance web developer, a parent would be able to select her projects and create her own schedule.
Median Pay: $61,000
Speech-Language Pathologist: A speech-language pathologist diagnoses and treats communication and swallowing disorders in patients. Speech pathologists can work in healthcare facilities, schools, or patients’ homes. Many speech pathologists have flexible work hours, and can arrange appointments around their own schedules. Those working in schools typically get school vacations off, allowing parents to follow their children’s schedules.
How to land the job: Speech-language pathologists must complete a two-year master’s program to become certified.
Median Pay: $71,000
Teacher’s Aide: A teacher’s aide (also known as a Paraprofessional) assists a lead teacher in a variety of classroom assignments and activities. Teacher’s aides typically work in elementary and middle schools, or in special education programs. Parents who serve as teacher’s aides can enjoy the same holidays as their children including summers off. The pay can be low, but many schools need TAs to offset large classrooms and instructor responsibilities.
How to land the job: Many teacher’s aide positions require a high school degree, while others require at least two years of college or an associate’s degree. Some positions, particularly those in special education programs, can require further certification.
Median Pay: $23,000