The White-Collar Cannabis Industry
The makeup of the cannabis industry’s workforce is constantly changing.
Marijuana legalization is spreading to other states later this year including Maryland, Missouri, Utah, and Michigan. Soon the marijuana industry will become one of the top employers in the U.S.
All of this is happening quicker than some might have expected. Marijuana sales have outpaced sales of tattoos, organic foods, and Oreo cookies in 2017-2018. In a few more years, marijuana is projected to exceed annual sales at Netflix and McDonalds and sales of ammunition, firearms, video games, and donuts.
The good news is that this means a lot more jobs will be created. These positions will not merely be for entry-level employees either. There will also be jobs for people who have a college degree, just like any other industry that’s in the business of making money.
How Many Jobs Will Be Created?
Nationwide, the marijuana industry employs around 125,000 to 160,000 workers which is the same employment rate experienced by kindergarten teachers and more than workers in the coal industry as well as pilots, librarians, and detectives.
Estimates will vary depending on how large and fast the industry grows. Canada recently legalized cannabis earlier in the fall and has already acquired talent from traditional economic sectors including HR professionals, attorneys, marketers, and research scientists. This is a small taste of what will soon be happening in the United States.
Alison McMahon works for a marijuana-focused HR firm in Canada. She is happy that prohibition for cannabis has finally ended and feels hopeful about the industry’s future. The new green rush will be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to become part of history.
Types of Jobs Available
Organic searches for marijuana and cannabis on the popular job search engine Indeed have quadrupled from last year. Marijuana job listings in these sectors have also tripled during this same period.
Cannabis job searches in November pulled up a variety of professional positions which require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and in many cases a master’s degree which is preferred. No specific geographical location was entered as part of the search.
They’re not just notable for the wide variety of locations available, but also the extensive range of professionals that are needed. Some jobs are in places you’d never expect. Some sample job openings include a compliance specialist and project analyst for a cultivation plant in Ohio, a regulatory and legislative strategist for a business in northern California, a CFO for a CBD pharmaceutical business in Dallas, an inventory control forecaster for a Hawaiian cultivation business, a data reporting forecaster for a testing lab in Massachusetts, and a marijuana industry forecaster for an investment business in Kansas.
The trend for recreational marijuana legalization is expected to spread further across the United States. The cannabis industry will not only create thousands of jobs for employees across a broad range of professions but will continue to become more popular. It will be worth billions of dollars in the years to come.