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Finance & accounting

Bookmaker

Bookmakers organise gambling activities in betting offices, at racetracks and online.

Annual Salary

£14,000 to £45,000

Average UK salary in 2019 was £30,378
(source Office for National Statistics)

Working hours

41 to 43 variable

You could work: evenings / weekends / bank holidays; away from home

What's it all about?

Day to day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks could include:

  • recruiting, training and supervising staff
  • greeting customers and promoting products to them
  • taking bets and paying out winnings
  • dealing with complaints
  • setting sales targets
  • controlling costs and balancing accounts
  • organising staff rotas
  • looking after the security of staff, customers and money
  • following gambling law

Working environment

You could work in an office or at a race track.

Your working environment may be outdoors in all weathers.

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly
  • a graduate training scheme
College

You could do a Level 2 Diploma in Gambling Operations, which would teach you some of the skills and knowledge you'll need for this job.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
For more information
Apprenticeship

You could join a bookmaking firm and start on a customer service practitioner intermediate apprenticeship. This is followed by further training which can lead to betting shop manager positions.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
For more information
Work

You could start in a betting shop as a cashier then take training on the job to become a supervisor or betting shop manager.

Direct application

You could apply directly to bookmakers for a trainee manager post. To do this, you'll need GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including English and maths.

Employers will also expect you to have some experience of customer service, supervising staff and handling money.

Other routes

You may be able to apply for a betting company's graduate training scheme to start your career in bookmaking and betting shop management.

Requirements and restrictions

You'll need to:

  • be over 18 years of age

More information

Career tips

When you apply for a job as a bookmaker, you may be asked to sit a basic maths test to show that you can deal with percentages and calculating odds and payments. These tasks are often carried out by electronic tills, but it's important that you're able to explain them to customers.

Further information

You'll find more details about a career in the gaming industry from the Hospitality Guild.

With experience, you could manage several shops in a region, or set up your own business.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • the ability to work well with others
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • maths knowledge
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • customer service skills
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • active listening skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
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