California boasts the sixth largest economy in the world and more Fortune 500 companies than any other state in the nation. As a result, the field of consumer services offers virtually unlimited career choices to ambitious job seekers in the Golden State. The sector encompasses a broad spectrum of jobs that cater to consumer needs, from customer service representative to credit counselor to consumer advocate.
Advanced training in a specialty area is the most secure path to a career in consumer services. For example, employment opportunities in financial planning are expected to grow through 2012, especially as more and more individuals seek assistance with planning for their retirement. Also, as concerns about identity theft, privacy and other consumer protection issues have intensified, California has positioned itself on the forefront of consumer law, providing an abundance of promising career prospects.
Financial compensation in consumer services varies widely depending on the specific job and the employee's level of education and training.
Job titles in the career sector include product demonstrator, customer service representative, loan counselor, credit analyst, personal financial advisor and financial manager.
Students pursuing the consumer services career pathway can expect coursework and training on such topics as:
- Business administration and management
- Economics, accounting and finance
- Communication, marketing, advertising and public relations
- Consumer protection laws and regulations
- Computer programming and systems administration