Q: What jobs are available in the sports industry?
A: The sports industry is extremely varied. What angle do you want to pursue? Working with athletes is an option. If you’re a natural sales or marketing person then check out sports careers in college athletic departments, with apparel, equipment, or footwear manufacturers. There are job opportunities with sports marketing companies and professional sports teams and leagues.
Obviously, there are coaching jobs in the sports industry and those are found at the recreational level on up to the professional level. Health and fitness jobs exist at your local club, in college athletic departments, with pro teams, and in many other places. The opportunities are everywhere. Get involved and start networking; that’s the key.
To see the many types of sports jobs we cover check out the SportsCareerFinder site map.
Q: How much can I earn pursuing a career in sports?
A: It’s impossible to generalize about earnings in the sports industry. For instance, a football coach at the junior college level might earn as little as $5,000 for the season if he’s not on the faculty. Often a coach will also be a teacher–or even the athletic director–and with increased responsibilities commands a higher income and great benefits. As a sports fan, you’ve probably read the papers and have seen how head coaches at the college level, in major sports, are earning in the millions while assistant coaches pull down nice salaries too. But it all depends on the size of the program!
If you’re involved in sponsorships sales or any other type of sales job you’ll typically enjoy a base salary plus bonuses and/or commissions.
Pay varies with the type of work and where you reside on the proverbial totem pole. Each of our job descriptions sections describes pay and benefits as well as the pecking order. Most employers offer a generous benefits package to full-time staff that may include: medical and dental insurance, life insurance, disability insurance, 401K plan, profit sharing plans, vacation time, etc.
Each section of SportsCareerFinder discusses the types of jobs available and the earning potential.
Q: What are some of the perks available in the sports industry?
A: Many who have careers in athletics put up with lesser pay and long hours for the perks. Let’s face it, you’re probably not going to make the sacrifices required if you don’t love sports. And if you love sports then you’ll enjoy being around athletes, coaches, and the ‘game day experience.’ Perks include tickets, freebies such as apparel and equipment, social encounters with local and national media, and news headlines involving your team or league. If working in college athletics, it can be incredibly rewarding to see how student-athletes mature over the years and earn college degrees.
Q: Where are most of the jobs in the sports industry?
A: Sports job opportunities are all over the place but you’ve got a better shot if you’re living in a major city. Clearly, if you want to work in professional sports, then it’s important to live in a city that has professional sports teams. Many working in college athletics have moved around from school to school. You might find yourself working for a couple of years at a division 2 school in Iowa, moving up the ladder to a similar job at a division FCS/1AA program, and finally breaking into the athletics department of a major program. If you’re aspiring to reach the highest level — whether in D1 sports or professional sports — then most likely you’ll need to be flexible about where you live. Major cities are also where many top athletic apparel and sports equipment companies are located. If your goal is to be a designer or sales rep for one of these companies then you have to be flexible about relocation.
On the other hand, there are sports jobs everywhere. How about working for your local Boys and Girls Club as a coach or administrator? Soccer leagues, YMCA, pee-wee football…the opportunities are numerous. Health and fitness jobs, sports writing and sports broadcasting jobs are found in just about every region.
You need to decide what kind of job you want, examine the options, and use our Job Center to locate employer profiles and job postings..
Q: What are the keys to getting a sports job?
A: Job Seekers need desire first and foremost. And they need to have a strategy. With SportsCareerFinder, you’ll learn about the importance of networking — who you know is critical. For some sports jobs, you will need an advanced degree in athletics administration or sports management. Sometimes all you need is to show success as a salesperson, in an internship, or have an undergraduate degree in a health career. Want to coach? Then coaching experience is needed.
Perseverence, contacts, knowledge, skills, and ability are things you need most.
Q: How much previous experience do I need?
A: Your sports career job search can actually start with SportsCareerFinder. Using information found in our Free Members Section you’ll learn all about careers in sports. Use our Job Center to search an extensive list of sports agencies, pro teams, pro leagues, marketing agencies, recreational sports organizations, and more. You can jump right from their company profile in our Job Center to job listings, company application pages, job lines, and so forth. We provide the perfect shortcut to sports employment information. The good news is that once you read our information you’ll feel more confident about interviewing.
Q: What are the negatives of working in the sports industry?
A: The biggest negatives of working in the sports industry are the long hours, high expectations, and sometimes pay that is below what you might make doing a similar job outside of sports. Interestingly, you just don’t see much turnover in the industry despite these ‘negatives.’
Q: What kind of education is necessary for careers in sports?
A: Sometimes it’s enough to have an on-the-job education but in other cases, depending on the job, you’ll need at least an undergraduate education in business or something sports related. Each of our sections and the job descriptions within describe the necessary education and work experience needed. Also, SportsCareerFinder includes an excellent list of colleges and universities that offer sports-related degrees and post-graduate coursework.
Q: Does SportsCareerFinder deal with sports agent jobs?
A: Of course it does! There are several avenues available for aspiring sports agents. You can work for a full-service agency, and entertainment agency, for yourself independent of an agency. Not only does our athlete representation section lay out the options but we also provide an excellent list of agencies.
Q: What kinds of sports jobs are covered?
A: SportsCareerFinder covers all of the major sports sectors:
Our JobCenter includes sports employer profiles you can search for current job openings. Additionally, we provide the best resources for keeping track of the business of sports so you can jump on opportunities when they’re available.
Q: What is the price of a subscription to your Members Section?
A: Effective June 24, 2014, subscription to the Members Section are free. We no longer charge job seekers to access any of our content or job listings.