The worst job in the world for 2017? (And this year’s ten best jobs)

The annual ranking of the best and worst jobs to have has just been released. How does your profession fare this year?

It’s a rough time for traditional media jobs apparently. A number of roles in print and broadcast media have been ranked as the worst jobs to have this year. It’s also not great to be a lumberjack or taxi driver right now.

The team at CareerCast have put out their annual ranking of 200 prominent positions based on employment growth outlook, wages, working environmental conditions and stress levels.

Based on these factors, some very prominent and surprising jobs rank very unfavourably when compared to other professions. You can view the team’s complete ranking methodology here.

Here are the ten worst jobs to have this year:

    Newspaper reporter
    The Internet has done a number on print media. Not that many people actually read a printed newspaper anymore. Print journalists face shrinking budgets, fewer opportunities, and still work in a high stress, competitive environment. So, based on working conditions, outlook, pay, and stress – it ranks as the worst job to have again this year.

    Similarly, the conditions aren’t great for people working in broadcast media. Media consolidation has lead to fewer positions being available. Media companies also face declining advertising revenue and increased competition from streaming and Internet options. Plus workers in this field are in the public eye, under pressure, and constantly facing tight deadlines.

    A few years ago, logger – or lumberjack – was considered the worst job in the world. So, coming in at number three this year is progress. Still the job is physically demanding, dangerous and has limited prospects for career growth.

    Enlisted military personnel
    This is a high stress, physically demanding job that can get you shot at or killed. The pay can’t be high enough to compensate for the dangers.

    Pest control worker
    These professionals work in confined spaces often with dangerous materials and poisons, trapping or killing insects, vermin, and other creepy crawlies. The poor working environment lands them in the top ten worst jobs list.

    Disk Jockey

    Wait. What? We still have disk jockeys? Apparently, but the outlook for those in this position is very poor. Roles are being eliminated by station consolidation, digital playlists, and multiple stations using the same on-air personalities at the same time. Plus the pay isn’t great.

    Advertising sales person
    Continuing with the theme of media jobs ranking low for outlook and high for stress, advertising sales people face a highly-competitive atmosphere and declining job prospects. It’s just one more traditional media role to appear on the list of worst jobs to have this year.

    While everyone loves firefighters, they have dangerous, high stress, and physically demanding jobs without a high enough level of pay to compensate for those negatives.

    Retail sales person

    More and more people are shopping online. The outlook for these positions is diminishing, the pay isn’t great, and they have to spend long hours on their feet serving customers.

    Taxi Driver
    They’ve been Ubered and Lyfted, cutting into their income and prospects, while they spend their shifts behind the wheel, navigating traffic. It’s a poor working environment with high stress and diminishing compensation.

I would have thought that the guy who cleans up the portable toilets after an outdoor music festival would have the worst job in the world, but they didn’t make the cut.

It’s not all bad news. There are plenty of professions that have great working conditions, high pay, low stress, and growing employment outlooks. The cloud to that silver lining? For many of them, you’ll need to study math.

Here are the ten jobs that ranked the highest this year:

  • Statistician
  • Medical services manager
  • Operations research analyst
  • Information security analyst
  • Data Scientist
  • University professor
  • Mathematician
  • Software engineer
  • Occupational therapist
  • Speech pathologist

Kids, stay in school. The best jobs in the world this year require at least a bachelor’s degree and often more advanced certification following that.

If your profession doesn’t make the top (or bottom) ten list, you can always visit for the complete list of all 200 jobs rated for 2017.

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