locksmith job outlook
Locksmiths often install and repair alarm systems.
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The job outlook for locksmiths appears promising, according to 10-year projections by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics issued in 2008. However, the role, skills and responsibilities of locksmiths have rapidly changed and expanded as technological advancements have improved safety and security systems. Locksmiths no longer solely repair, install and replace physical locks and keys. They must be trained and equipped to manage and operate electronic security equipment for residential homeowners, public facilities and commercial businesses.
Job growth for locksmiths is expected to increase during the period from 2008 to 2018. According to data supported by the BLS, there were approximately 22, 100 locksmith and safe repair workers in 2008. The expected number of locksmith workers in 2018 is expected to be 24, 800, which represents an approximate 12 percent growth. The average growth rate for all occupations between 2008 and 2018 is 10.1 percent, so the job outlook for locksmiths is better than the national average.
Reasons for Demand
The anticipated increase in demand for locksmiths is partially due to new construction of commercial and residential properties, such as private businesses, residences, medical facilities, commercial establishments and government agencies. According to the BLS, 6, 100 total job openings are expected by 2018, due to economic growth, business development and replacement needs. As locksmiths age and retire, there is a continuing need to find qualified workers to fill open positions. Some traditional locksmith jobs are being replaced with more technologically advanced positions.
Job Opportunities for Locksmiths
Locksmiths are needed in industries, such as colleges and universities, security services, elementary and secondary schools, commercial wholesalers, scientific research facilities, traveler accommodations and local, state and federal government agencies. In a 2012 report, the BLS stated that the highest percentage of industry employment for locksmiths was in investigation and security services, and the second highest in facilities support for businesses. Even though the United States will see some growth in the security industry, the fastest-growing markets are in China, India, South Africa and Turkey, according to a 2013 report by The Freedonia Group, a leading international business research company, published on the Security Systems News website. Gross domestic product increases, population growth and new construction are the main reasons for expanding security needs in these countries.
Electronic Security Systems
Part of the reason for the increase in expected employment opportunities for locksmiths in the United States and around the world is the continuing need for high-tech commercial and residential electronic security systems. The global demand for security equipment is expected to increase seven percent annually to $117 billion in 2016, according to The Freedonia Group. Locksmiths who want to broaden their skills to keep up with electronic and computerized security demands often need specialized training and coursework, such as the Certified Alarm Technician course, offered by the Electronic Security Association.