7 trendy new jobs
From keeping BlackBerrys in shape to settling minor divorce disputes, some interesting new positions have sprung up in recent years.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) – It may be true that the more things change the more they stay the same.
But it's also true that the more things change, the more new lines of work are created, even when the cause of change is negative.
Consider the past five years or so. Americans have experienced terrorism, natural disasters, corporate scandal, a war in Iraq, the threat of global health crises, countless new technologies and social trends, and a rise in luxury demand.
To find out what new posts have sprung up or expanded as a result of these changes, we spoke to recruiting firm Spherion, outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas, jobs site Monster.com, consumer information site Divorcenet.com, the Robb Report and its affiliate magazines, and Exclusive Resorts.
Here are just a few new or in-vogue positions that they've been seeing:
Director of mobile computing: Thanks to the BlackBerry, Treo, laptop and cell phone, every job can be turned into a 24/7 message fest.
So integral are these devices to work life now that when the maker of the BlackBerry was facing a potential shut down of its services this year, you would have thought the business world was bracing for a loss of electricity.
Upgrading all those portable lifelines to the office and keeping them in good working order has now become a full-time job with a big title.
Director of internal controls: In the wake of the Enron and WorldCom debacles came the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 establishing more stringent internal auditing requirements for publicly traded companies.
From that legislation was born whole new departments staffed by directors of internal controls, chief compliance officers and Sarbanes-Oxley auditors, all of whom are dedicated to ensuring companies comply with the new law.
Business continuity director: The Sept. 11 attacks, major natural disasters, the SARS outbreak, and the threat of a pandemic have made more companies take seriously the need for "preparedness planning."
Enter the business continuity director, who usually hails from a security background in information technology and law enforcement. The continuity director is charged with making contingency plans to ensure the company's workforce and infrastructure can continue to function during and after a crisis.
Chief people officer: Remember the dotcom boom, when companies were practically groveling for good employees?
Well, it's not quite so sweet this time around, but it's sweeter than it's been for awhile. So companies have dipped into their party-like-it's-1999 files and pulled out the title chief people officer.
The CPO is expected to lead the charge in the war for talent, implementing creative ways to woo new hires and retain employees in a labor market that's begun to see a shortage of qualified workers.
Besides human-resource experience, CPOs also have field experience working with a company's customers and other employees, making them all the better equipped to spot the talent a company needs.
Parent coordinator: Contentious custody battles in divorce aren't new, but how they're handled is changing, at least when it comes to everyday disputes between warring parents -- e.g., Mom wants Jr. to take piano lessons on Thursdays; Dad wants him to play soccer.
Such relatively small issues can take as much time and money to resolve in court as the more serious issues, so the judge and the parents now may elect to delegate them to a parent coordinator.
The coordinator typically is a lawyer or child psychologist whom the court appoints to issue binding decisions on the spot over such everyday disputes, usually over the phone after the parents make their arguments.
Residence concierge: The latest trend in luxury travel is the luxury residence club, and one of the biggest players in the field is Exclusive Resorts. For a very, oh-so-pretty penny you can join the club and gain access to 300 multimillion-dollar luxury vacation homes around the world.
Membership includes the 24/7 services of a residence concierge. Far more than a hotel concierge, the residence concierge will arrange for everything from stocking your refrigerator, managing your household staff, arranging for all your transportation and setting up customized events for you and your family. After all, when in Tuscany, why not have cooking lessons given in the kitchen of your house?
Blog editor: I blog, you blog, we all blog apparently, judging from the proliferation of blogs in the past two years. The success of influential ones like Wonkette.com has companies wanting in on the perceived edginess of the blogosphere.
"Blogging" is not only starting to creep into people's job descriptions, but recruiters are starting to see blog-related job listings.
One on Monster.com seeks a blog editor "to manage and moderate blogs for clients and to write for the company blog on PR and new media topics."