Jobs

From Accountant to Programmer -- These Are the Cities With the Least Demanding Jobs

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They say sitting is the new smoking, yet in many jobs today workers end up stuck to their chairs throughout their entire workday, usually in front of a computer screen or while serving customers. Accountants, computer programmers, receptionists, graphic designers are but a few such jobs. Compared to jobs that require long periods of standing, lifting heavy weight, or working in unpleasant conditions, these jobs are considered to be less physically demanding.

If you’re looking for minimal physical effort while working, you might want to consider cities that have an abundance of such jobs.

To determine the cities with the least physically demanding jobs, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed data on physical demands of occupations from the Occupational Requirements Survey and Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics programs of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Cities were ranked based on an index combining the percentage of workers exposed to the outdoors, the percentage of workers exposed to extreme heat, the average maximum amount of weight workers are required to lift or carry on the job, and the average amount of time workers are required to stand on the job per day. Occupation-level data was aggregated from the ORS to the metropolitan statistical area level using employment counts from the OEWS. Concentration by occupation is measured by location quotient, which measures concentration compared to the national concentration.

Of the 50 cities with the least demanding jobs, 17 are in states in the West, including four in California, three in Oregon, and two each in Washington and Arizona. These cities almost inevitably include tech centers such as San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California, and Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington. (On the other hand, see: Cities With the Most Physically Demanding Jobs.)

Another 14 cities are in states in the South, including two each in Texas, Virginia, and Maryland as well as Washington D.C. This, again, is not surprising considering the high concentration of government jobs and those at defense contractors in the area. For example, California-Lexington Park, Maryland, has a relatively high concentration of aerospace engineers, while Washington D.C. has a relatively high concentration of political scientists.

Among the 12 cities in the Northeast, Boston not surprisingly has a relatively high concentration of biochemists and biophysicists. Finally, there are seven Midwest cities on the list.

Why This Matters

Source: scyther5 / iStock via Getty Images
People starting a career or looking to change jobs often consider different factors, including pay, work-life balance, and location. Some prefer to work in a more physically demanding job, while others prefer to exert less physical effort at work. Here we aim to showcase the cities that have the least physically demanding jobs is highest.

50. Burlington-South Burlington, VT

Source: SeanPavonePhoto / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.2 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Community and social service specialists; film and video editors; extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

49. Salem, OR

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.5 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Personal care and service workers; woodworkers; administrative law judges, adjudicators, and hearing officers

48. Pittsburgh, PA

Source: Christian Hinkle / Shutterstock.com
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.9%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Genetic counselors; bridge and lock tenders; mining and geological engineers, including mining safety engineers

47. Charlottesville, VA

Source: halbergman / E+ via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.2%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.8 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Social scientists and related workers; medical scientists, except epidemiologists; biological technicians

46. Tucson, AZ

Source: toddtaulman / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.0 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Social science research assistants; anthropologists and archeologists; hydrologists

45. Danbury, CT

Source: nancykennedy / Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.5%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.5 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.2 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Grinding, lapping, polishing, and buffing machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic; manicurists and pedicurists; physician assistants

44. Colorado Springs, CO

Source: Jacob Boomsma / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.3%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Insurance appraisers, auto damage; semiconductor processing technicians; media and communication equipment workers

43. Lincoln, NE

Source: Jacob Boomsma / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.0%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.2 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Agricultural sciences teachers, postsecondary; plating machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic; soil and plant scientists

42. San Diego-Carlsbad, CA

Source: f11photo / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.5%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.3 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Entertainment attendants and related workers; marriage and family therapists; biological scientists

41. Carson City, NV

Source: Bill_Dally / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.8 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.1 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Forest and conservation technicians; community health workers; environmental scientists and specialists, including health

40. Huntsville, AL

Source: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.3%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Aerospace engineers; engineers; atmospheric and space scientists

39. Manchester, NH

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.9%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.4 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic; cooks, short order; postal service mail sorters, processors, and processing machine operators

38. Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL

Source: Davel5957 / iStock via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.0%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.9 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Fire inspectors and investigators; bridge and lock tenders; flight attendants

37. Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.0 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Semiconductor processing technicians; personal care and service workers; computer hardware engineers

36. Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ

Source: 4kodiak / E+ via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.8%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.0 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Semiconductor processing technicians; plasterers and stucco masons; tapers

35. Corvallis, OR

Source: Daphne Zheng / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.7%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.5 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Zoologists and wildlife biologists; biological technicians; personal care and service workers

34. Raleigh, NC

Source: zimmytws / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.5%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.6 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Farm and home management educators; life scientists; surveying and mapping technicians

33. Richmond, VA

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.8%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.2 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Life scientists; social work teachers, postsecondary; administrative law judges, adjudicators, and hearing officers

32. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL

Source: TriggerPhoto / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.0%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Physicians, pathologists; neurologists; exercise physiologists

31. Madison, WI

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.9%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.8 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Animal scientists; microbiologists; farm and home management educators

30. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA

Source: shalunts / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.2 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Agents and business managers of artists, performers, and athletes; special effects artists and animators; sound engineering technicians

29. Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD

Source: benedek / E+ via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.4%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 24.0 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 4.0 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Shampooers; biochemists and biophysicists; parking enforcement workers

28. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX

Source: TrongNguyen / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.8%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Semiconductor processing technicians; aircraft cargo handling supervisors; plant and system operators

27. Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.8%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.8 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Media and communication equipment workers; miscellaneous construction and related workers; athletes and sports competitors

26. Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA

Source: dangarneau / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.6%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.8 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Agricultural technicians; actuaries; soil and plant scientists

25. Provo-Orem, UT

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.0%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.0 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Plasterers and stucco masons; umpires, referees, and other sports officials; credit counselors

24. Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI

Source: Davel5957 / E+ via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.7%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.1 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Gambling service workers; prepress technicians and workers; industrial engineering technologists and technicians

23. Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, ConnecticuT

Source: SeanPavonePhoto / iStock via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.3%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.4 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Actuaries; lathe and turning machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic; teaching assistants, postsecondary

22. Springfield, IL

Source: fotoguy22 / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.5%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.1 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Arbitrators, mediators, and conciliators; tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents; cardiologists

21. Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.3%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.5 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Physical scientists; word processors and typists; tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents

20. Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO

Source: milehightraveler / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.8%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers; cartographers and photogrammetrists; information and record clerks

19. Lansing-East Lansing, MI

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.6%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.9 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Farm and home management educators; statistical assistants; soil and plant scientists

18. Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.2%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.1 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Healthcare practitioners and technical workers; physical scientists; food science technicians

17. Salt Lake City, UT

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.4%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 23.1 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Mathematicians; historians; bioengineers and biomedical engineers

16. Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.5%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.1 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Archivists; landscape architects; manicurists and pedicurists

15. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA

Source: roman_slavik / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.7%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.3 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.7 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Avionics technicians; aircraft structure, surfaces, rigging, and systems assemblers; tapers

14. New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA

New York | The skyline of New York City, United States
Source: StockByM / iStock via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.3%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.4 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Fashion designers; transit and railroad police; word processors and typists

13. Tallahassee, FL

Source: SeanPavonePhoto / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.7%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 21.9 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.7 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Psychiatric aides; office and administrative support workers; judicial law clerks

12. Ann Arbor, MI

Source: Davel5957 / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.2%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 22.2 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.9 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Teaching assistants, postsecondary; engineering teachers, postsecondary; commercial pilots

11. Austin-Round Rock, TX

Source: Jonathan Ross / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.9%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 21.5 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.7 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Geographers; tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents; fine artists, including painters, sculptors, and illustrators

10. Olympia-Tumwater, WA

Source: John Callery / Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.6%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 21.6 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.7 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Epidemiologists; health education specialists; zoologists and wildlife biologists

9. Durham-Chapel Hill, NC

Source: SeanPavonePhoto / iStock Editorial via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 5.0%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 21.3 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.6 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Life scientists; statisticians; biological scientists

8. Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.4%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 21.7 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.7 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Biochemists and biophysicists; bioengineers and biomedical engineers; communications equipment operators

7. Ithaca, NY

Source: Jonathan W. Cohen / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.2%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 21.0 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.8 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Art, drama, and music teachers, postsecondary; political science teachers, postsecondary; teaching assistants, postsecondary

6. San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA

Source: bluejayphoto / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.6%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 20.9 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.6 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Taxi drivers; biological scientists; biochemists and biophysicists

5. Boulder, CO

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.9%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 19.8 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.5 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Astronomers; physicists; aerospace engineers

4. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV

Source: LUNAMARINA / iStock via Getty Images

  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.2%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 19.9 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.5 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Political scientists; economists; astronomers

3. Trenton, NJ

Source: Ultima_Gaina / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 3.6%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 20.5 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.4 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Natural sciences managers; biochemists and biophysicists; environmental scientists and specialists, including health

2. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA

Source: Bill_Dally / iStock via Getty Images
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 4.1%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 19.2 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.3 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Computer hardware engineers; semiconductor processing technicians; computer and information research scientists

1. California-Lexington Park, MarylandD

Source: Thinkstock
  • Workers exposed to extreme heat: 3.6%
  • Avg. weight lifting requirement: 18.3 lbs.
  • Avg. standing time required per day: 3.3 hours
  • Highly concentrated occupations relative to nat’l concentration: Aerospace engineers; computer and information research scientists; electronics engineers, except computer

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