Bakers fall into the Realistic Theme Code Category of the Strong Interest Inventory (SII). The SII has helped guide job seekers towards careers that are a good fit since it was first released in 1927. It works by first asking job seekers a number of questions to shed light on their values, interests and preferences. It then compares the respondent’s values, interests and preferences with those of professionals  working in specific careers with the notion that if  an individual shares the same interests, values and interests with a professional who is content in his/her/their job, then most likely you will be so as-well. This is only one part of how The SII chooses your top careers as it takes into consideration all of your “Likes” and “Dislikes” and aides you in choosing your very best career in which you will be happy and content. Furthermore, to maximize impact, the SII guides job seekers towards one or more of six different categories of careers, each of which has certain defining characteristics. For example, being a Baker is considered a Realistic career because it involves working with one’s hands to produce a tangible product that provides for others in a way that people enjoy.  

Bakers are responsible for producing a broad range of sweet and savory goods, from cookies and cakes to bread and rolls. They need to be able to execute many different tasks. The production process itself is the most important part of the job. It includes setting the correct oven temperatures for each good, measuring and mixing the ingredients in the right quantity and manner, placing the resulting doughs in the appropriate cooking vessels (e.g., pans, sheets, molds, etc.), baking them in the preheated ovens, removing them at the appropriate time, and allowing them to cool before portioning and packaging. If necessary, Bakers may also need to apply toppings, such as icings, glazes, sprinkles, and so on. Bakers who specialize in certain products, such as cakes, cupcakes, or cookies, may also need to be talented decorators. Along the way, Bakers need to observe their progress and adjust appropriately. For example, if they notice a batch of bread over-browning, they may need to adjust the oven temperature accordingly.

Strong Interest Inventory Bakers Careers

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In addition to the production of the goods, Bakers also need to pay attention to aspects of the business. For example, Bakers need to accept shipments, often very early in the morning, and evaluate products to ensure they are high quality. They should also inspect their equipment regularly to ensure that their equipment is operating properly and in accordance with health and safety regulations. They may also need to schedule or hire someone to schedule periodic surface and deep cleanings, to maintain inventory, to track production and invoicing, to do the bookkeeping, including accounts payable and receivables, and to order and receive supplies. These kinds of clerical tasks can typically be managed with standard office software (e.g., Microsoft Office Suite, Email software, web browsers, Microsoft Excel, QuickBooks, etc.)  

On the other hand, production tasks may require more specialized equipment, including but not limited to decorating materials (e.g., airbrushes, edible paints), commercial and domestic kitchen hardware (e.g., blast chillers, blowtorches, blenders, ovens, cutlery, dishwashers, food processors, slicers, graters, griddles, juicers, molds, whisks, cutters, etc.), cleaning materials (brushes, mops, buckets), and packaging machines (e.g., wrappers, vacuum sealers, labelers, barcode readers). It is important to note that the specific tools that a Baker uses on a daily basis depending on their exact responsibilities and the products their bakery produces—a cupcake shop and wedding cake store will likely have some different equipment. 

Most Bakers learn their craft through on-the-job training and apprenticeships. Nearly 60% of Bakers have a high school diploma as their highest level of education, while 25% have less than a high school diploma. An additional 9% have completed some college without earning a degree. In other words, extensive higher education is not necessary to become a successful Baker. Rather than academic credentials, Bakers need to have strong communication skills, since they often work in collaboration with other Bakers, bakery owners, and customers. They need to have close attention to detail and be able to accurately estimate effort and completion dates, even for large projects. 

The median salary for a Baker Career in the United States is $14.13 per hour, which comes to $29,400 per year. While Bakers may earn more or less depending on where in the country they work, just 10% of Bakers nationwide earn more than $43,310 per year. Bakers have the highest earning potential in large metropolitan areas, such as New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. However, it can also be expensive to live in these cities. Another factor to consider is employment. In 2020, there were about 193,400 Bakers in total employed in the United States. The projected growth in the next decade for a Baker Career is average (5% to 10%), which comes to an estimated 28,300 new Baker positions projected to become available before 2030. 

Below are some employment trends for a Baker Career: 

  • Median Salary: $29,400 annually
  • Employment: 193,300 employees
  • Projected growth (2020-2030): Average (5% to 10%)
  • Projected job openings (2020-2030): 28,300
[Information retrieved from Bureau of Labor Statistics wage data and 2018-2028 employment projections]

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Click on one of these to access more Realistic Theme Code Careers: Acupuncturist, Airline Pilot, Animal Trainer, Anesthesiologist Assistant, Barber, Bus Driver, Civil Engineer, Cardiovascular Technologist and Technician, Medical and Clinical Lab Technician, Computer Support Specialist, Game Warden, Forest Firefighter, Heating and Air Conditioning Mechanics, Recreational Protective Service Worker, Meat Trimmer, Molecular and Cell Biologist, Nanotechnology Engineering Technician, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, Pathologist, Plumber, Radiologist, Police Patrol Officer, Surveyor, Telecommunications Engineering Specialist, Veterinarian, Veterinary Technologist and Technician, Welder, Zoologist and Wildlife Biologist.


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  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics wage data and 2018-2028 employment projections