Want a job in the drone industry? If you want to get hired, odds are you’re not actually a drone pilot. The most sought-after drone industry job right now: software engineer.
That’s according to a February 2019 report from drone analytics firm DRONEII. Their study looked at over 400 companies in the hardware, software and services sectors of the drone industry — ¼ of which had job openings at the time of research.
They analyzed 903 job advertisements posted by 102 different companies during the summer of 2018 and found that the most common job opening was for software engineer.
It’s not surprising, given the biggest drone news as of late has been around drone-related software.
The CEO of French drone company Delair told TheDroneGirl in an interview last month that the company plans to hire about 60 employees this year, and most of the positions will be for software engineers. Other software-based drone companies are making waves, such as Kittyhawk, which recently announced it would be the company responsible for overhauling the Federal Aviation Administration’s B4UFly app.
Not only do software engineers have an abundance of job postings to apply for, but they tend to get paid more and are happier than most other workers.
An August 2018 Glassdoor report found that software developers and engineering managers are among the highest-paying jobs in America. Among the 10 highest-paying jobs in America, the report found that (based on median base salary), software development managers were the 6th-highest earners based on median base salary ($108,879), software engineering managers came in at No. 8 ($107,479) and software architects came in at No. 10 ($105,329). Most of the other roles on that Top 10 list were in the medical field.
And while money can’t buy happiness, software engineers are pretty darn happy. A March 2019 Glassdoor report ranked jobs by satisfaction. Software development manager came in at No. 14.
DRONEII also compared their 2018 data against a similar report done during the summer of 2017 and found that, no surprise, software engineers were in strong demand then.
Software not your thing? There’s hope for other professions too. The report found that the number of job openings for sales-related positions almost doubled between 2017 and 2018, “reflecting the growth in not only the number of drone companies but products that they sell on the market,” according to the report.
And if you have your heart set on being a pilot, don’t give up hope.
“The particularly low numbers of job offerings for pilots are down to the fact that the majority of pilots currently work on a freelance entrepreneurial level as big service organizations have yet to develop in this category,” according to the report.
Where are the drone jobs located?
According to DRONEII’s report, the most drone-related job openings out of any country were located in the U.S., and more specifically California. It also found that Israel, France, the UK, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands were aggressively hiring as well. remain dominant hot spots of drone related recruitment.
The report did note that its data could be skewed in some instances, particularly in Asia. “Chinese companies are less transparent in their hiring processes than other business, more often using of back channels like headhunters,” the report said.