Ohio’s new sports betting industry will have an impact on the state beyond the millions of dollars in tax revenue. The addition of dozens of new businesses – and the expansion of current gambling options – will create hundreds of jobs in the state as companies add fresh employees to handle the new industry.
Ohio sports betting doesn’t begin until Jan. 1, 2023, but gambling companies around the state already have started hiring.
It takes a lot of effort to build a new industry from the ground up, and the Ohio job totals are rising quickly. PlayOhio estimates Ohio’s sports betting industry will create at least 705 jobs by the time sports betting begins.
Where are the jobs coming from?
The Ohio Casino Control Commission (OCCC) regulates the state’s industry, so it decides which companies can operate in the Buckeye State.
The commission is in the process of evaluating Ohio’s sports betting applicants, which break down into three main categories:
- Type A Proprietors (online sportsbooks and betting apps)
- Type B Proprietors (retail sportsbooks)
- Type C Proprietors (sports betting kiosks)
The OCCC uses a handful of benchmarks to decide which companies get in on the sports betting party.
For instance, professional sports teams receive priority for retail sportsbooks. Established companies with sports betting experience get the same preference for the online side of things.
Each of these three groups will be hiring new workers for their corners of Ohio’s sports betting industry.
PlayOhio was able to confirm many of the projected 705 jobs, but not all of them. Some of the estimated total is based on comparing similarly sized applicants.
For example, if three casinos each plan to hire 25 workers for their retail sportsbooks, then it makes sense that a fourth casino of a similar size would need a similar number of employees.
By filling in some gaps this way, PlayOhio was able to reach a total of 705 sports betting jobs, which should serve as a conservative estimate for the state’s future.
Ohio retail sportsbooks are hiring the most
The majority of the hiring for Ohio sports betting will come from brick-and-mortar retail sportsbooks. Since these Las Vegas-style sportsbooks offer wagering in person, they need more boots on the ground compared with their online counterparts.
Retail sportsbooks should create at least 505 jobs right out of the gate.
Ohio has four full-fledged casinos in its gambling lineup, plus seven racinos that offer horse track betting. All of them hope to open a sportsbook next year.
That’s in addition to the state’s professional sports teams, which plan to open sportsbooks inside or near their stadiums. (The Cincinnati Bengals are the lone exception, as they do not plan to open a retail sportsbook at this time.)
The Cincinnati Reds just announced a new deal for BetMGM to run the team’s sportsbook. The company will be handling all of the hiring and day-to-day gambling operations at Great American Ballpark.
Elisa Richardson, BetMGM’s head of public relations, told PlayOhio the new sports betting partnership is just the beginning of the company’s plans in the Buckeye State:
“We’re thrilled to partner with the Reds. This is largely BetMGM’s first big announcement in Ohio, ahead of the state’s scheduled launch of legalized sports betting on January 1st and marks the beginning of our plans to create the most entertaining and dynamic sports betting experiences in the state.”
Professional teams hiring new workers is a great start, but it still doesn’t account for all of Ohio’s in-person sportsbooks. The ball keeps on rolling.
A handful of other locations, such as the Pro Football Hall of Fame Village, also have thrown their hats into the sports betting ring.
Toss in a couple of unique applicants, such as a high school and a fireworks company, and the jobs start adding up quickly.
Ohio’s brick-and-mortar locations will create the most sports betting jobs, but they aren’t the only ones hiring to support the new industry.
Types of Ohio sports betting jobs
Ohio’s gambling companies not only need plenty of new workers but plenty of different types of workers.
From supervisors to ticket writers, the various openings cover all areas of Ohio’s new industry. After all, someone has to be there to take your bet when you walk up to a sportsbook counter.
Here’s a quick look at a few of the positions that are actively hiring:
- Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati: Sportsbook Supervisor
- BetMGM (Columbus): VIP Account Associate
- Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse (Caesars): Sportsbook Ticket Writer
- Miami Valley Gaming: Sportsbook Customer Service Representative
- Tipico Sportsbook (Columbus): Market Development Representative
These are a few examples out of the dozens of in-person jobs that are already out there for Ohio sports betting.
Sports betting kiosks add to the total
Sports betting kiosks could be wildly popular in Ohio by this time next year. They might even be more popular than retail sportsbooks in the state.
The Ohio Lottery is in charge of regulating the kiosk side of the state’s sports betting business.
Lottery officials have pre-approved more than 1,300 kiosk locations throughout Ohio. According to the latest updates, more than 800 of those locations now have full approval.
In other words, almost everyone in the state will have a sports betting location near them sooner rather than later.
Seven companies will be licensed as Type C kiosk proprietors — they will manage the betting kiosks for the host businesses. All seven will need new employees to manage the process. PlayOhio estimates those needs will create at least 105 new jobs throughout the state.
Bettors will be able to find sports betting kiosks at bars, restaurants, grocery stores, bowling alleys and other local businesses around Ohio. The Kroger supermarket chain initially applied for kiosk licenses at more than 40 locations in the state.
Not everyone lives near a casino, so kiosks will offer a more convenient option for placing sports bets in person.
Jobs from ‘other’ sports betting areas
Companies that physically are taking wagers need the most new employees, but that doesn’t mean other areas of the gambling world aren’t also hiring for Ohio’s big debut.
For now, this “other” category accounts for at least 95 new Ohio sports betting jobs. That number is likely to increase in the future.
Sports betting starts in Ohio on Jan. 1, 2023, and the state’s regulators will need more workers to help govern the industry.
That puts the OCCC and the Ohio Lottery on the hiring list. Both groups have hired a handful of new employees and plan to add to that total as their needs evolve.
The OCCC has hired the most new employees between the two regulators. According to Director of Communications Jessica Franks, the commission has eight new employees on the books to help with the launch of sports betting in Ohio:
“The Commission has added eight employees in our Licensing, Legal, Regulatory Compliance and Responsible Gambling Divisions to assist with our expanded duties pertaining to sports gaming, and will hire additional staff in the future when needed to ensure we are able to meet our oversight responsibilities.”
Speaking of responsible gambling, the Problem Gambling Network of Ohio is even hiring a new program coordinator.
Sports betting affiliates make up the final handful of jobs in this category. Gambling expansion leads to new companies covering the various ins and outs of the industry.
Affiliate jobs can be for journalists covering the industry for sites such as PlayOhio, or for regional leads to oversee live sports bar sign-up campaigns in Cleveland and Cincinnati, jobs two companies currently have openings listed for.
Affiliate companies account for 82 of Ohio’s new jobs, making it the biggest piece of the pie of this “other” category so far.
Online sportsbooks will push things further
Ohio sports betting will create at least 705 new jobs before wagering begins next year.
We’ve mentioned the various groups that are hiring around the state, but online sportsbooks are a notable absence from the current list.
More than two dozen betting apps are hoping to open their digital doors for business in Ohio. Many of them will need new employees to make that happen.
The problem is, these companies aren’t sure how many workers they’ll need.
PlayOhio heard back from many of these sportsbooks, and each one said something along the lines of, “It’s too early to know.”
Even though these companies don’t have exact figures yet, many will be hiring new workers for Ohio in the near future. That will push the 705 jobs count higher in the coming months.
The full picture will come into focus as we approach the start of wagering in January. At the very least, Ohio will have more than 700 new workers in its gambling industry thanks to the legalization of sports betting.