Going into Management

You’re a take-charge kind of person. You can see the big picture, and you’ve believe you’ve mastered the details of your business specialty, or maybe the whole operation, from the ground up. What opportunities await you in management?

Typically, a person who is starting a career in management has a bachelor’s degree and five years or more of experience.

Business has been booming in several sectors in Kentucky, creating a need for more workers to manage everything from general operations to specialized areas like computer systems. The total number of management jobs in Kentucky is expected to increase by 8.8 percent from 2018 to 2028, from 105,217 to 114,476 positions.

Within this sector, the largest number of jobs will be for the top executives—general and operations managers. Their numbers will increase by 8.42 percent from 2018-2028, from 31,353 to 33,994 jobs. Median wage is $72,491.

The Most Pay

The highest paid managers earn six-figure salaries. Vaulting to the top of the list are computer and information systems managers. Demand for them is growing as more businesses expand to digital platforms, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In Kentucky they earn a median wage of $117,879.

Architectural and engineering managers are also paid handsomely. In Kentucky the median wage is $117,339. New jobs in this field are expected to be in computer system design and in consulting, according to BLS.

Purchasing managers oversee the work of buyers and purchasing agents who buy products and services for a business. In Kentucky, they earn a median annual wage of $110,650.

Training and development managers also have have a high median wage, $109,266. They are in charge of improving employee skills and education, and can be found in many different types of industries.

Here are the top median wages in management:

  • Computer and information systems managers: $117,879
  • Architectural and engineering managers: $117,339
  • Purchasing managers: $110,650.
  • Training and development managers: $109,266.
  • Sales managers: $103,961
  • Natural sciences managers: $106,608


Financial managers are increasingly valued in all kinds of businesses. Those with a master’s degree in accounting or finance are especially needed.

The increasing number of elderly people needing health and social services is driving the need for managers in those areas.

Here are the top management occupations in Kentucky by growth expected from 2018 to 2028:

  • Financial managers: 18.0 percent growth, from 6,438 to 7,597. Median wage $97,791.
  • Medical and health services managers: 16.25 percent growth, from 5,328 to 6,194. Median wage $83,140.
  • Computer and information systems managers: 15.56 percent growth, from 2,854 to 3,298. Median wage $117,879.
  • Transportation, storage, and distribution managers: 15.28 percent growth, from 1,852 to 2,135. Median wage $88,007.
  • Social and community service managers: 14.64 percent growth, from 2,425 to 2,780. Median wage $58,838.
  • Public relations and fundraising managers: 11.23 percent growth, from 641 to 713. Median wage $83,823.

Where Experience Matters

Not every management position requires a bachelor’s degree. In some businesses, experience is what is most valued.

Here are management jobs that do not typically require postsecondary education, along with their annual median wage:

  • Transportation, storage, and distribution managers: $88,007
  • Lodging managers: $57,545
  • Property, real estate, and community association managers: $49,715
  • Food service managers: $48,443

Data from the Kentucky Occupational Outlook to 2028


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