Keep Your Eyes on Solar Companies

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Being environmentally friendly is the de facto mindset of most people today. Many cities provide recycling bins for their residents. Gym goers carry around reusable water bottles instead of disposable plastic ones. Businesses proudly tell their customers that their shopping bags are made from 100 percent recycled material. As a whole, we’ve all gone green.

Although the well being of the planet and breathable air for future generations are good enough reasons to stop pollution and energy waste, another (more immediate) reason exists: your career. Green jobs aren’t going away; in fact, they’re on the rise. One area you might want to consider is solar energy. According to a new survey from The Solar Foundation, solar companies are on target to add jobs at a greater rate than the rest of the economy.

From the survey:

“[As] of August 2010, the U.S. solar industry employs an estimated 93,000 solar workers – defined as those workers who spend at least 50 percent of their time supporting solar-related activities. Over the next 12 months, over 50 percent of solar firms expect to add jobs, while only 2 percent expect to cut workers. This finding is especially relevant given that the overall expected 12-month growth rate for the entire U.S. economy is only about 2 percent.”

Your first reaction might be, “Well, that’s great for solar experts and the environment, but I’m not a scientist.” However, you don’t need to be. The survey has a lot of interesting information, but its most interesting detail is how prevalent these jobs will be across several industries. You don’t have to have a degree in solar engineering to work in this field. It’s similar to how you can be a great salesperson in retail or insurance or medical equipment. With the right training you can use your skills to sell anything.

According to the survey, manufacturing, wholesale trade and installation are the primary sectors poised for growth. Within each group you’ll find a variety of jobs, including:

As you can see, most of today’s professionals can use their skills in new jobs as solar positions continue to grow. So what can you do about it?

1. Pay attention

Solar jobs aren’t disappearing anytime soon, and you’re sure to read more about them in the future. Pay attention – read articles, journals, books, studies. You’ll be ahead of other job seekers if you understand the industry before you apply for the job.

2. Look around

The survey says that Colorado, Pennsylvania, Texas, Michigan and Arizona have a strong solar presence. Whether you live in one of those states or not, you should see what companies are focusing on solar efforts and where their new jobs are popping up. Solar jobs popular in Texas might not be as popular in your region, so have an idea of where you could end up.

3. Get educated

If working in this (or any environmentally focused) field is important to you, find out about certifications and courses. You might not need additional education to qualify for a job in this field, or you might only need one or two classes. Either way, you want to make sure that your core skills are bolstered by your qualifications in the solar industry.

Read the full survey here.

Have you thought about taking a job involving solar power and energy? Have you seen a shift toward this emphasis in your industry?

10 Comments
    • TO EMPLOYERS NEEDING TECHNICAL STAFF:
      I am seeking a position with an up and coming energy firm that needs the help of a self starting, educated (Master of Science in Engineering), adaptable and willing to take on work that offers a challenge and opportunity. Am a licensed Civil Engineer and licensed General as well as Engineering Contractor in the State of California.
      Please contact me via E-mail and I will be happy to give you a call.
      Sincerely;
      Lawrence Speight, P.E.

  1. A great place to start is the Solar Energy Industries Association website (http://www.seia.org/). Check out ABOUT SOLAR ENERGY, and SOLAR TECHNOLOGY & PRODUCTS. Also, be sure to click on Solar Jobs and drill down (a few clicks) to their online job board. Another good site is the American Solar Energy Association’s (http://www.ases.org/). Their Blog and Newsroom have a lot of interesting posts and articles. Also, try their JOBS button, which has links to numerous businesses and organizations, plus other job boards. To find out more about what’s going on in your local area, click on GET INVOLVED, then Find an ASES Chapter,pick a state, then a chapter. In my view, local chapters are a great place to find solar events, resources, and networking opportunities in your area. In Illinois, check out the Events Calendar, Resources and Blog on ISEA’s website (http://www.illinoissolar.org/).

  2. A great place to start is the Solar Energy Industries Association website (http://www.seia.org/). Check out ABOUT SOLAR ENERGY, and SOLAR TECHNOLOGY & PRODUCTS. Also, be sure to click on Solar Jobs and drill down (a few clicks) to their online job board. Another good site is the American Solar Energy Association’s (http://www.ases.org/). Their Blog and Newsroom have a lot of interesting posts and articles. Also, try their JOBS button, which has links to numerous businesses and organizations, plus other job boards. To find out more about what’s going on in your local area, click on GET INVOLVED, then Find an ASES Chapter, pick a state, then a chapter. In my view, local chapters are a great place to find solar events, resources, and networking opportunities in your area. In Illinois, check out the Events Calendar, Resources and Blog on ISEA’s website (http://www.illinoissolar.org/).

  3. A great place to start is the Solar Energy Industries Association website (seia.org/). Check out ABOUT SOLAR ENERGY, and SOLAR TECHNOLOGY & PRODUCTS. Also, be sure to click on Solar Jobs and drill down (a few clicks) to their online job board. Another good site is the American Solar Energy Association’s (ases.org/). Their Blog and Newsroom have a lot of interesting posts and articles. Also, try their JOBS button, which has links to numerous businesses and organizations, plus other job boards. To find out more about what’s going on in your local area, click on GET INVOLVED, then Find an ASES Chapter, pick a state, then a chapter. In my view, local chapters are a great place to find solar events, resources, and networking opportunities in your area. In Illinois, check out the Events Calendar, Resources and Blog on ISEA’s website (illinoissolar.org/).

  4. My comment is… I need a full time job.
    I’m a stay at home mom for 11 years. I’m looking for a full time position. Hours available 7am to 3pm. Also can work a couple of nights.

    Thank you for your time,
    Evelyn McNally

    Evelyn McNally 2 Ledgewood Road
    Flanders, N.J. 07836
    evelynmcn@yahoo.com
    (973)-927-1441

    Objective Accounting Clerk

    Experience HMA, Parsippany, N.J. 1995-1999
    Accounting Clerk
    · Accounts Receivable, posting payments, collection calls.
    · Responsible for recording deposits on Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. Closing batches, ranging from $100,000.00 to $400,000.00.

    Puleo Tree Co. Inc. Linden, N.J. 1993-1994
    Accounting Clerk
    · Accounts receivable, invoicing, collection calls, posting payments.
    · Billing and maintaining outstanding accounts.

    The Manor Restaurant, West Orange, N.J. 1989-1993
    Accounting Clerk
    · Accounts receivable, supervised the daily auditing and disbursement of the cash draws, research and prepare summary document for credit card charge backs, archive daily paperwork via microfilm camera, maintain daily sales analysis report via IBM compatible computer system.

    Crazy Eddie, Union, N.J. 1984-1989
    Head Cashier
    · Prepare weekly scheduling, payroll, and commission reports, closing reports for month end.

    Education Frank H. Morrell High School, Irvington, N.J. 1984-GED

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