The International SPA Association estimates that, approximately 377,900 people were employed in the U.S. spa industry in May 2019. Spa managers work for independently owned spas, spas that are part of a franchise, as well as spas that are part of hotels and resorts. Large metropolitan areas and cities offer the most employment opportunities for spa managers. Spa managers also work in resort areas with attractions like hot springs and consistently pleasant climates.
Many spa managers have prior experience in spas or related fields and receive their training on the job. They are flexible to relocate for work, if needed. If you are not particular about your geographic location, check travel publications for listings of resorts and spas, or visit https://www.spafinder.com for lists of spas according to their specialties and locations. Ask your school's career services office for help with finding job listings in spas and resorts. Also search for job listings on professional associations' Web sites and sites such as Indeed, LinkedIn, and SimplyHired, among others.
Spa managers advance by taking continuing education courses to keep up to date on industry standards and practices and learn about trends and developments. They get certification to demonstrate they have achieved a high level of knowledge and skills in spa management. Those that work for large spa facilities with locations around the country or globally may advance to become senior managers, regional managers, and directors. Some leave their full-time jobs to start their own businesses. They may also go back to school for a bachelor's or advanced degree in business management or other area.
Tips for Entry
Keep up with trends and developments in the spa industry and learn about potential employers by reading publications such as Pulse (https://experienceispa.com/pulse/current-issue) and American Spa (https://www.americanspa.com).
Get a part-time job in a spa to gain experience while making connections in the industry. Find job listings on https://dayspaassociation.com/resources/spa-job-listings and https://www.linkedin.com/jobs/spa-manager-jobs.
Join the International SPA Association (ISPA), Spa Industry Association, and other organizations to access training and networking resources, industry publications, and employment opportunities.
Attend the annual ISPA Conference & Expo (https://attendispa.com) to network and to interview for jobs.
Contact spas directly to inquire about job opportunities.