Legalized gambling and employment is generally restricted to people who are at least 18 or 21 years old, so it is difficult for high school students to get firsthand experience. But you can explore the field by learning as much as you can about table games, chance-based games, and sports betting; reading news articles about online gaming; and participating in information interviews with IGaming specialists. You can also explore your specific career field via a variety of avenues. For example, if you’re interested in software development, you could learn how to code; participate in programming competitions; and attend IT-related summer camps at colleges and universities. If you are interested in marketing, you could attend summer programs, volunteer or intern at a marketing firm, or join your school’s marketing club. Be sure to take advantage of every opportunity to explore your profession and develop your skills. Doing so will give you an advantage when it’s time to head to college.
Many types of workers are needed to design and create online gambling sites and apps, market these IGaming opportunities, assist customers, and perform other duties in the IGaming industry. The following paragraphs provide more information on potential career paths in the field.
When a gambling company wants to create a wagering Web site or app, its executives and other stakeholders meet with information technology (IT) professionals to determine how the product should look and function. Digital designers are tasked with creating the visual appearance of the product and any other digital products (advertisements, booklets, etc.) that are needed. Software developers write the computer code or manage automated processes that create the code in order to develop the front- and back-ends of the software. The front-end consists of the features that the gambler sees and utilizes (i.e., the user interface). The back-end consists of the components (server, the application, and the database) that are unseen by the gambler, but that are vital for implementing the commands of the user (e.g., login to an account, make a wager, update contact information). Other IT professionals involved in the development process include cloud engineers, who plan, design, develop, maintain, and operate cloud systems and applications in order to make the online gambling experience more flexible and accessible to users; software testers and quality assurance professionals, who test and ensure that the Web site or app functions as designed, and computer security specialists, who develop software programs that protect the privacy of gamblers’ personal and financial data, ensure that the IT security infrastructure is resistant to cybercrime, and, if a cybercrime occurs, respond quickly to address the issue.
While the IT professionals are developing new apps or Web sites (or improving existing ones), sales and marketing professionals create campaigns to tell potential and existing customers about new gambling opportunities. They spread the news via radio and television ads, social media, e-mail marketing lists, and a variety of other avenues.
Once the app or Web site is launched, people begin to use it—and may encounter problems. In these instances, customer support specialists assist customers who are having trouble accessing their account, making a bet, or otherwise using the app or Web site. They communicate with customers via live online chats, via e-mail, and by telephone to help them solve the problem.
Compulsive gambling is a major problem in our society, and the gambling industry is working hard to identify and assist problem gamblers. Safer gambling agents monitor customers whose behavioral indicator metrics at gambling sites suggest that they may need counseling regarding excessive gambling. They communicate with the customer via live chat, e-mail, or telephone to address the issue and offer, if requested, make referrals to gambling addiction programs and organizations such as the National Council on Problem Gambling.
Many other career paths are available in the online gambling industry, including in legal services and compliance, data analytics, human resources, government relations, and administrative services.