11 Ways to Work in the Cannabis Industry Without Touching the Plant
You don’t have to trim buds or stand behind a dispensary counter. Skills from other industries can be used to assist the cannabis industry.
More and more job hunters are eying the cannabis industry as their next possible work environment. The first and most obvious reason is a love for weed. Regular consumers, patients who benefited from the plant and non-consumer have seen the positive effects legal marijuana is bringing to our country. They’re the first to get enthusiastic about the possibility of getting down to business with producers, distributors and dispensaries.
But you don’t have to be a marijuana fanatic to crave a job in the cannabis industry. Since legalization started a domino effect across the US and Canada, it has generated over 211,000 jobs, and counting. 64,000 of those jobs came to be in 2018 alone and about 90,000 more are expected for 2020. That’s why audacious job hunters should definitely keep an eye on a booming industry that offers great benefits for employees and has higher average salaries than the US medium.
Yet, that’s not all. As one would assume, starting out in an industry that’s making its way into adulthood is an amazing opportunity for personal and professional growth. Businesses are expanding, which allows employees to slide up the corporate ladder with a weed-powered boost. Companies are being born every day, which creates a higher demand for trained workers, which ultimately translates in better pay. Who knows, maybe the cannabis start-up you just applied for is bound to become the next Canopy Growth.
If you’ve read our recent article on 11 Ways to Work in the Cannabis Industry, you might have felt bummed when not finding your job description amongst the list. But don’t throw the towel just yet. There are many careers in the cannabis industry that don’t imply being in touch with the plant.
From experienced CFOs to fresh-out-of-college accounting assistants. Whether it’s a small owner-run dispensary or a giant producer like Aurora Cannabis Inc., cannabusinesses are in need of accounting professionals to help keep track of payments, perform monthly, quarterly and yearly balances, prepare liabilities reports and perform audits on the business’ activities.
Although not exclusive, knowledge of industry regulation is a plus for accountants on the lookout for a cannabis company. That’s why active accountants should look into companies like Dope CFO to get specialized training and resources in cannabis industry bookkeeping.
Physical and Digital Security
Every business should make sure safety is guaranteed throughout its operations. But cannabis businesses have special needs that call for special security procedures.
First of all, the federal restrictions on the legality of cannabis push banks to deny accounts to cannabis businesses. This causes cannabis companies to operate in all-cash, which is a major security hazard that requires a lot of personnel to guard and transport all earnings.
Secondly, coming from a black market, cannabis businesses are strongly pressured by state and local governments to report and audit their operations. That’s why good quality footage of everything that goes on in a company’s facilities is crucial, to make sure no problems arise during inspections. Lastly, making sure all digital files are well-kept is also a necessity for cannabis businesses. This is why digital security specialists are often employed to make sure information is properly backed-up.
Specialized cannabis security companies are already out there. So safety professionals -from security guards to CCTV and digital specialists- should check out their sites for a resume upload.
Cannabis businesses are sprouting around legal states like flower buds in spring. That’s why a strong need for brand building, consumer communication and market strategy is needed in all corners of the industry. Marketing analysts have the difficult task of understanding the current cannabis consumer, which nowadays is elusive and ever-changing. Communication experts must find creative ways to reach customers in a field that has many advertising restrictions. Branding professionals have the need to develop strong products that appeal to consumers and differentiate from other brands.
Entering a young industry, cannabis marketers will meet many challenges. But they will also get to explore and set the basis of the industry standards that will remain there for decades to come.
There are already many cannabis-focused marketing agencies like Wick and Mortar, Cannabrand and Cohnabis that work every day with cannabusinesses. They’re a great place to start a cannabis marketing job search.
Cannabis businesses need designers. Period. Good design is a crucial aspect of any successful business and the cannabis industry is in desperate need for it. When an entrepreneur is planning a new dispensary, an interior designer is hired to build and decorate the inside. When a producer is developing a new cannabis product, an industrial designer is hired to work on the packaging. When any new business is born, whether it’s retail or B2B, graphic designers are recruited to develop its visual identity.
Specialized design agencies like Brand Joint and The Hybrid Creativegive cannabusinesses solutions for their design needs. However, freelancers are often hired to work directly with marketing departments on a project-basis.
Cannabis is definitely giving a lot to talk about, and media outlets are welcoming new creatives to join the conversation. Cannabis-specific media companies have gained strong ground since the old days when High Times was the sole magazine in sight. Today, podcasts, video platforms, and online publications make a family of independent and corporate-owned channels that daily employ creatives. Editors, writers (Ahem!… yours truly), producers, influencers and many other creative folks, are hired to inform, educate and entertain the cannabis community.
If you’re reading this, you’re probably already aware that the cannabis industry is hiring new personnel by the minute. Well, all that scouting, recruitment and hiring needs to be done by someone and that’s where Human Resources professionals come in.
Cannabis companies take big legal risks when going into business because of the highly regulated industry they’re inserting themselves in. That’s why they need informed and trained HR experts who can comply with employment regulation, choose the right people and train them properly.
Cannabis specific job search sites and personnel agencies have already started to pop up along the cannabisphere. But in-house positions are raising in demand as companies grow and their need for new employees becomes larger.
Believe it or not, lawyers are amongst the most sought-after professionals of the booming cannabis industry. Cannabis might be legal in many states and Canada. But regulation is tough and being updated on every detail is a full-time job that CEOs don’t have the time and expertise to do. That’s why Compliance Managers are there to apply for licenses, develop procedures that comply with local, state and federal law, be on the loop for changes in legislation, an make sure every aspect of the company’s operation is up to speed, so that the government gives them their thumbs-up.
There are compliance consulting agencies that employ up-to-date professionals. They guide companies through the bureaucratic nightmare that is legal cannabis. However, those interested in these types of positions can also try to find an in-house job at a cannabis company.
Coding and Tech
The cannabis industry is accustomed to being in the innovative side of business. Today, it’s leading the implementation of groundbreaking technologies in every corner of its supply chain. From cultivation automation. From platforms that use AI, machine learning and Big Data to improve its efficacy; to blockchain based transactions used to provide security and transparency into the business. Cannabis and tech professionals mix the best of both worlds. They provide users with an unprecedented consumer experience, in a market whose limit is the sky.
Programmers, computer scientists, innovation researchers, UX/UI designers, automation experts and Big Data analysts heed the call. You’re being recruited by some of the top cannabis tech companies to envision and build the industry of the future.
Cannabis stock is so hot, even countries are going after it. While the Green Rush floods wall street, thousands of inexperienced investors are looking up to market analysts to reveal what company will go up, which one will go down, and where should the money be put. Finance analysts are also hired by cannabis companies and hedge funds to research markets and provide insights on the next best move.
In such a multi-layered industry, it’s sometimes easy to forget it all comes down to medicine. Arguably, even recreational users are experiencing marijuana in a medicinal capacity. Hey, they’re also benefiting from the plant’s healing potential. In any case, in its starting stages, the driving force behind cannabis legalization is its medical use.
Through the power of prescriptions, physicians have become some of the most important players in an industry that relies on their opinion and professional recommendation to acquire new consumers.
Cannabis clinics are already a global phenomenon, hiring large staffs of MDs to use marijuana as a main component in health treatments. Online courses and certifications are also available, which can help doctors get more acquainted with the subject in order to land a job in the field of medical cannabis.
Combustion might not be the healthiest way to consume cannabis. It is, however, amongst the most popular. Glassblowers are the artisans in charge of producing the pipes, bongs and glass devices people will use to smoke their weed.
Those thinking of a glassblowing career need to be meticulous, attentive to detail and good with their hands. Although there are places to learn glassblowing, some are self-taught. But anyone thinking of getting into the art of glassblowing must be extremely careful. Daily glassblowing tasks include using very dangerous instruments.
Glassblowing can be a regular job, but it can also be considered an art form. There’s a high-end market for intricate and functional bongs that can go up to $100,000 a piece. There are even special art gallery shows dedicated to bongs.
Not every glassblower will be making their yearly wages out of a single bong sale. But still, it’s a fabulous way of making a living for those wanting to be in touch with the cannabis industry through a noble craft.
Daily, ByGreen Rush. “Best Dispensaries In Southern California.” Green Rush Daily, 22 Aug. 2019, greenrushdaily.com/guides/best-dispensaries-in-southern-california/.