Thursday, May 23, 2024

Ten £50k+ Jobs That Don’t Require a Degree




Annie



7th May 2024

Reading Time: 9 minutes

Whether you’re thinking of switching careers or you’re right at the start of your working life, knowing whether you need a degree for a job or not can impact whether you follow your dreams. Degrees are expensive! We’ve found a bunch of jobs that you can earn £50k or more without needing a degree.

Recruitment Consultant

Estate Agent

Talent Agent

Airline Pilot

Personal Trainer

Train Driver

Life Coach

Social Media Influencer

Fisherman

Cyber Security Consultant

 

Recruitment Consultant

If you’re a people person with a knack for sales, this could be the job for you. Helping others find a job can be rewarding work, but you need to be tenacious and outgoing. There is a lot of outreach – contacting employers to see if they want to use your services and contacting jobseekers to match them to jobs – but once you establish a reputation and good employer client base, it’s a steady way to a salary over £50k.

Junior consultants will start on a low base salary, around £22,000 – but commission is added on top of that, with bonuses if you hit targets, too. There are different types of consultants – you might specialise in a certain field of work (like IT, marketing, manufacturing, human resources etc) for permanent jobs, or you could place ‘bank’ staff for medical and care settings. There are pros and cons to both – the first is a longer game, as the process for hiring is longer for each role so it can take some time to get the commission. However, commission is higher. With bank staff recruitment, you’ll build a relationship with jobseekers who regularly want extra shifts, as well as care homes or nursing departments that often need holiday cover etc. The turnover is very fast with this type of job, but the commission is much smaller. Both will net you around the same commission overall but require different skills. Long-term roles are about people skills while bank recruitment is about speed and network (who can you call to cover a shift right now, today?).

Estate Agent

Yes, estate agents might have a bit of a reputation but in reality it can be a highly rewarding job. You’ll work with lots of people and get to see a whole range of life – no day is the same. Some estate agents specialise in either rentals or sales, while others will do both.

An average starting salary is £25,000 plus commission on every sale or rental agreement. The average salary in the UK for an estate agent is around £35,000 plus commission which can easily take you above £50,000 a year. You don’t need a degree, but you can learn on the job with a trainee position.

You will need to have a good memory, as each property will have all sorts of information to remember. It’s also important that you understand people’s likes and dislikes easily – there is no point showing someone a 3 bed house on the outskirts of town when they want a three bed flat in the city centre!

Another type of estate agent is one that deals with commercial properties – this could be anything from a single office to a massive multi-storey building. Specialising in commercial tenancies can be very lucrative, especially in cities where space is at a premium for companies, so if you have hustle abilities it could be the best route to consider.

 

Talent Agent

Ever wondered how actors get cast? Talent agents are the people behind creative talent like actors, directors, writers and even producers. It’s their job to ‘sell’ their client to get them work, and then they receive a commission from that client’s pay for the job.

When you’re starting out, you’ll be a talent agent assistant for a few years on a lower salary between £21,000 – £27,000, so you can learn the trade and build a network of contacts. When you move up to becoming a talent agent with your own clients, your salary will be around £30,000 – £40,000 base before commission. It’s a lot of networking and outreach (if you like going to the theatre several nights a week to spot new talent this could be for you!).

You need to absolutely love theatre, TV, and film, and have a good eye for talent. You need to be a salesperson but, more importantly, a people person: these industries work very much on ‘who knows who’ so if you’re a fan of schmoozing at events it could be ideal for you. There are long hours and often nitty gritty contracts to sort out (with help of your business affairs team), and you’re often on-call seven days a week. But you’ll earn at least 10% of every paycheck of every client – so when you have one or two earning upwards of six figures, it’s easy to see how you can earn a lot as a talent agent.

 

Airline Pilot

This is a highly desirable job but you will need a head for numbers and be willing to work all kinds of shifts. Pilots start out on a salary around £25,000 but will very quickly rise once training is complete to well over £50,000. In fact, most airline pilots earn at least £80,000 a year with senior training captains earning in excess of £120,000 a year.

You don’t need a degree to become an airline pilot (although there are degrees you can take). You will need a high standard of A-Level education, be medically fit, and be prepared to either pay a lot for training for your commercial pilot’s licence or take on debt to do so. Some companies will offer a low starting salary to offset the training fees.

Airline pilots can be long haul (over 8 hour flights) or short haul, or even private charter jets (though this tends to be a route for experienced commercial pilots to move to after a few years on the airlines). The hours can be any time of day, any day of the week, but you shouldn’t do more than 60 hours in a working week. You can also often sell your time off to make extra money, as long as it doesn’t go over the maximum hours in the week. It’s a physically demanding job and can take a few years to pay off the training – BUT – the salary rises very quickly and you get to see the world!

Personal Trainer

You don’t HAVE to have qualifications as a personal trainer but it is definitely recommended to take some in your field of interest. This will help you advise clients on how to get fit safely and help you get a salaried role at a gym or wellness centre. The minimum qualification for this would be a CIMPSA approved Level Three Diploma in Personal Training.

A personal trainer helps other people get fit or achieve their athletic goals. Some will also be nutritionists and advise on their clients’ diet and lifestyle for a more holistic approach. Some will specialise, such as training powerlifters or working with people with medical conditions, while others are more general. Personal trainers are usually self-employed. Personal trainers in employed positions start at around £27,000 a year moving to £35,000 in the first few years and over £50,000 after that. Self employed trainers have more control over what they can charge, but will need to be more flexible and usually invest in some equipment too.

You will need to have an interest in health and fitness yourself, and be able to find ways to motivate people based on their needs. Some people prefer a ‘drill sergeant’ approach to motivate them while others like positive reinforcement.

Train Driver

Keep the country moving by becoming a train driver! Starting salaries during training are around £24,000 – £26,000 a year but the average salary for a train driver is £57,000 according to Glassdoor and you could earn beyond into around £70,000 after a number of years.

You don’t need a degree to become a train driver but you will need some GCSEs (or equivalent) of A-C grades for maths and  English. Many people start out as a train conductor and apply from there to become a driver. Training takes place on the job and will take between 12-24 months to complete.

When you have gained experience, you can also move into related careers such as training new drivers, train driver or staff management, or similar roles, which come with higher salaries.

Life Coach

A life coach is not a therapist or a counsellor. They use their skills to help people find their own strengths and weaknesses, and guide them through big decisions in their life such as changing careers or building their own business.

You don’t need to have any qualifications to set yourself up as a life coach, but you can charge more and also gain client trust in your service by having them. A qualification in counselling is helpful, and you can find other professionally-accredited courses through CIPD.

Some life coaches have a professional business-centred approach, while others are more holistic and focus on the individual’s personal goals. It’s a self-employed position, so how much you earn depends on how much you charge! You need to consider how many hours a week you can give to clients, how many hours a week you need to market your service, and what value you can bring to people. To earn over £50,000 a year (pre tax) as a self-employed life coach, you will need to earn an average of £1,000 a week, assuming you take a week off over Christmas and in the summer. That’s £200 a day – so if you charge £50 an hour, that’s four hours of contact time a day. Remember that, being self-employed, you’re not paid for the work you do behind the scenes, only for client time, so factor that in to your calculations. (So, for example, you could do four hours in the morning on building your coaching business and four hours of client time in the afternoon to reach your minimum daily target of £200).

Social Media Influencer

We couldn’t do a list of degree-less jobs without putting this on here! How much you can earn as a social media influencer is really a ‘how long is a piece of string?’ question. However, when you’ve built an audience and can start getting sponsors to pay for your posts, it can quickly rack up to thousands of pounds.

If you have 500,000 followers on Instagram (for a dream example), you can easily earn over £10,000 for one promotional post. That’s a couple of hours’ work!

Of course, it takes a lot of time to make money on social media, and you need to be able to have the confidence to host a channel as well as the time and creative energy to make new content every week. But, if it really appeals to you, you could earn literally millions of pounds.

Fisherman

Did you know there are 400 harbours in the UK that have fishing vessels sailing in and out of them every day? If you’re after a physical job that comes with some danger but high reward potential, a role as a fisherman might be for you. You’ll start out as a junior deckhand as you learn everything that’s needed to operate a safe environment on a vessel, and progress from there.

You don’t need a degree but you will need at least basic safety training. You’ll also need to have a good level of fitness as it is a very physically demanding job, and be prepared to work in all weathers (and not get seasick).

The average salary for a commercial fisherman in the UK is £52,000, but the starting salary for a deckhand will be lower at around £22,000. When you are an experienced fisherman, you can apply for your captain’s licence to run your own vessel and salaries then become much higher above £70,000 or more.

Cyber Security Consultant

As our world operates almost entirely online in some way or other these days, cyber security specialists are in high demand and £50k jobs are easy to find if you’re skilled at it. You don’t need a degree but you do need a solid understanding of computers, computer languages, and security issues. You can look for an apprenticeship to train on the job, with employers as varied as the British Army to BT to Microsoft and beyond. You can also take courses such as the Ethical Hacker course or become a Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) to boost your career prospects.

Another benefit of training as a cyber security consultant is that computers are international – and so you could work internationally, too. This gives you access to working for some of the biggest names in IT such as Google, Apple, and Microsoft, either at an international office or even remotely.

This is one of the roles with a high starting salary – around £40,000 – because of the highly technical nature of the work. You will quickly rise beyond that, with an average salary of £55,000 in a year or two and £80,000 or more with a few years’ experience.



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