Bookmaker

Alternative titles for this job include Bookie, turf accountant, betting shop manager

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

Average salary (a year)

£14,000 Starter

to

£45,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

41 to 43 variable

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays away from home

How to become a bookmaker

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) for a level 2 course

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, for an intermediate apprenticeship

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.

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 can get more details about working in the betting industry from the Association of British Bookmakers and the Hospitality Guild.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

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
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

  • be 18 or over

What you'll do

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.

Career path and progression

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

Current opportunities

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Courses In England

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