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21st Oct 2018

Types of jobs in esports

The Hitmarker team run through all of the different types of jobs available in esports and what skills you'll need for each of them, which is intended to help you narrow down what sector of this industry you want to pursue a career in.

You may have seen our guide on how to get a job in esports which covered what you need to know about jobs in esports and how to increase your chance of landing one.

Well, we want to go more in-depth. We want to leave you totally confident that you possess the knowledge needed to get an esports job. And that's why we came up with this content series.

In this episode of our esports career advice, we’ll talk about the different kinds of jobs you’ll find in esports, a brief summary of what your duties would be in them, similar jobs that will fit into their categories and the types of skills you’ll need to make it in that specific sector.

Let's get into it!

1. Content

There are plenty of content jobs in esports these days. Whether it’s producing creative types of content used for marketing, normally written or visual, editing that content, or producing graphics, you’ll find plenty of these roles in esports. Let’s take a look at some of them!

  • Writing - This is relevant to those of you interested in the written medium of content for esports. This sector for people interested in producing feature articles, news posts, interviews and other written work. Skills that writers need include:
    • A very high level of written English
    • An eye for spotting mistakes in their own work
    • Research skills
  • Videography - Videographers are the people behind the cameras, filming the raw action that we consume through videos. Videography jobs in large esports team will typically ask for experience, and will be very popular. Often videography skills are asked for in video editing jobs, and vice versa. Qualities that make for a good videographer include:
    • An eye for where the action is in any given scenario
    • Being able to tell a story through what you film
    • A technical understanding of video/video cameras and how best to capture footage
  • Video Editing - Where does the raw video from a videographer go? To a video editor, of course! Video Editing can be self-taught and therefore able for anyone to enter, no matter their experience levels. Esports video editors are talented with programs that can polish and add to the raw video files to create an excellent finished product thanks to the following skills:
    • Creative skills - being able to see raw video and knowing how best to add to it
    • Knowledge of video editing programs and proficiency in them
    • Strong IT and computer skills

2. Software Development

Software Development jobs in esports are abundant, with many companies needing people to create websites for them, apps for their products and any other software needs they may have.

  • Software Engineering - Software engineers are well-versed in the technical side of software and able to contribute to various parts of website, app and software creation. Companies won’t advertise these roles as entry-level, but those of you interested but without experience can build sites/projects of your own to use as a portfolio, and there's usually some software development internships floating around. Here are some of the skills needed as an esports software engineer:
    • Fluency in a variety coding languages
    • A knack for problem-solving
    • The ability to work in a team with UI/UX in mind

3. Operations

Operations covers a broad spectrum of jobs. They all boil down to making sure that a project or a segment of a company ticks and is well-managed, and here are some of its variants.

  • Project Management - Project managers are the people who head up a project. They are in charge of all aspects, including the planning and preparation of the project brief to the execution of it. These jobs are reserved only for people fluent in multiple aspects of business. As a project manager in esports, you’ll need some of these skills:
    • People management
    • Budget management
    • Being able to take ownership of growing whatever project you're working on
  • Product management - A product manager is the person who heads up a product that their company might have. They’ll manage the operations of this product and take ownership of all its facets; think of them as the CEO of a particular product. The word 'Product' doesn't always need to mean something physical; these jobs might also be with digital products, such as the betting offering from a larger company, or on the B2B side of a service. Product managers are experienced professionals and are intermediate/senior jobs in the scene. Here are some common skills needed by product managers looking for jobs in esports:
    • All-round business skills to grow the product
    • Being able to negotiate well when it comes to sales, contracts and more
    • The ability to totally assimilate themselves into their product and be an encyclopedia on it
  • Event Management - We all love a good event in esports. They’re the celebration of everything great in the scene, but they don’t organize themselves. Event managers are in charge of everything to do with an event, from sponsors to booths to venue choice. Depending on the size of the event, this could be a job available for those without much experience, but generally this is a senior position in companies. Here’s a few skills an event manager looking for an esports career should have:
    • Organizational skills - you'll be juggling lots of balls so will need to be on top of things
    • Multi-tasking - it’s not a one-dimensional job
    • Creativity! In esports especially, events must be engaging, different and exciting

4. Customer Service

Every industry is going to have customer-facing roles, even a relatively young one like esports. People at events, people in call centers answering your tech issues, the growth of esports enables jobs like these. It’s not a sector we see too much activity in, but here are some of the areas you could get in with esports in customer-facing positions.

  • Account Management - Not to be confused with an accountant, an account manager liaises with a company’s client. This is usually a more junior role at the company, and requires good communication skills with customers. In esports, we often see account managers being hired in order to manage sponsors / partners of esports teams, leagues or other well-known entities. Skills needed in account management are:
    • Customer service ability
    • Strong communication
    • Being a people person who can build relationships
  • Customer Service - A broad sector we use at Hitmarker to mark anything that involves speaking to customers. This can include manning a booth at an esports event, being a remote customer service advisor and any jobs in retail stores with a gaming focus, such as Razer and Microsoft. Customer service jobs are frequently junior roles, and can be a good way to gain some experience in esports. Here are skills customer service jobs require:
    • People skills
    • Sales skills - these are often required (but not always)
    • Knowledgeable about the product/area the job is in
  • Hospitality - Hospitality is more of a non-esports field, but is slowly integrating itself into the scene. Jobs in bars, hotels, restaurants and more count as hospitality, and with the growth of esports we’ve seen these open up more and more frequently, especially in esports-themed bars. Like the above sector, this sector is usually open for junior candidates in the scene to get into. Here are some skills may needed to be successful in the hospitality sector:
    • Sociable and good with people
    • A willingness to sometimes work unorthodox hours (evenings + weekends)
    • The ability to multitask
  • Sales - Whether it’s in the form of selling products, services or even acting as a sponsorship manager, esports has the need for sales jobs. In sales, the three main avenues you’d probably find yourself in is ecommerce, trying to attract sponsorships to an org or helping drive sales of a company that has products they market. Sales can be an entry-level job in some cases, as well as a very senior position in the company in positions such as Head of Sales or Sponsorship Managers. Here are some skills a salesman in esports would need:
    • Brilliant negotiation
    • A good people-person and communicator
    • Creative approach

5. Production

The production category has two main types of jobs: people needed to be in front of the camera and the people behind the camera. For those who are enigmatic and great at speaking, a career in front of the camera may be waiting for you. For those of you with talents in the technical/planning side of a broadcast, esports has plenty of careers to house your talents, too.

  • Caster - A caster in esports is most easily described as taking the role of a traditional sports commentator, only for esports. They’re the voice of the action, highlighting the most pivotal moments of games and providing additional hype to godly plays with their commentary. Casters rarely need a set amount of experience, and will instead be judged on their past work/demo reel. Aspiring casters would benefit from the following skills:
    • Impeccable speaking skills
    • A talent for storytelling
    • Expert knowledge of the game(s) you cast
  • Analyst - If the casters are the people giving games context during the match, the analysts are the people who dissect each moment of the match and reveal the complexities of a team’s play. Just like casters, experience is second in analysis to a reel of your work. To be an analyst in esports, the following skills would come in handy:
    • Beyond-expert knowledge of your choice of games
    • A clear communicator to concisely convey your ideas
    • Good on camera and able to work back and forth with other members of talent
  • Host - Hosts are the members of talent in charge of the analyst desk. They guide the topics of conversation and ensure that focus goes on sponsors when needed and make sure not to overshoot the time segment allocated to the desk. Broken record here, but any on-camera position will depend heavily on your reel for you to get it. We have some great hosts in esports, and if you think you want to join them, the following skills will help you out:
    • The ability to take control of and guide the story the desk is building
    • Able to work with time considerations in mind
    • The ability to stall - technical issues are an unfortunate reality of esports events
  • Interviewer - There to extract the interesting thoughts behind the game’s action, Interviewers work at events to speak to players on stream and find out what happened in the match from their perspective. Interviewers will also need a demo reel to secure jobs, which may come in more useful than experience. Some skills you’ll need to be an interviewer in the esports industry include:
    • A talent for research and preparation to make sure your questions are interesting
    • The ability to make your interviewee feel comfortable and at ease
    • Excellent knowledge of your game of choice to ask the most pertinent questions
  • Directors - Enabling the people in front of the camera are those behind it. Directors of the broadcast are the people choosing what gets shown when, and are likely to be the people in the ears of the talent members telling them when commercial breaks among other things are coming. Directing a broadcast is a very senior role in the running of events. Directors skills may include:
    • Able to paint a story through the broadcast and decide how this is developed
    • Technical understanding of typical broadcast equipment
    • Strong planning and execution of how you want the show to run.
  • Camera Operators - An obvious element of the broadcast, camera operators are needed to add varying camera angles to the end stream. Camera operators is a job available to most people, though having some form of showing your past work would prove most beneficial. Here are some of the skills one would need to operate cameras in esports events:
    • A broad understanding of video cameras
    • Creative and able to enhance the broadcast with what the cameras show
    • An understanding of where the action is - to film the reaction of pros, capture the best reactions, etc
  • Network engineers - With so much technical equipment being used to facilitate a global broadcast, and the consequences should these fail, it’s no surprise that engineers needed to ensure the smooth operation of the technical workings of a broadcast exist. With such faith put in the skills of a network engineer by a company, Network Engineers will nearly always need experience to land jobs. Not a junior role by a long shot. Some skills you’d need to land a job like this in the esports industry are:
    • Cybersecurity skills to secure the network
    • A brilliant grasp of IT equipment
    • The ability to solve technical issues that arise in a high-pressure environment
  • Tournament admins - If you know everything about the rules of pro events in your game of choice, then you may think yourself right to be a tournament admin. These people ensure the rules are upheld, disputes are settled fairly and can assist players with whatever they may need. They’ll usually be fairly senior roles in the running of events. Some skills they need are:
    • Diplomatic with a talent for solving conflicts
    • A thorough understanding of the professional rules used in events
    • Organized and always on top of schedules

6. Marketing

Marketing is one of the most prominent job roles in esports and usually our second most popular job sector. It's a broad topic to over, but here are some of the jobs in esports marketing you can expect to find.

  • Marketing - A broad sector that revolves around increasing the reach of a company’s product. This could be through a hundred different channels, but in general marketers are very familiar with their industry and know best how to reach potential customers or users. Marketing can be open to juniors in the industry, but is usually a job needing intermediate experience or more. Skills a marketer in esports may require include:
    • Good communication skills
    • Deep knowledge of their industry
    • Creative and able to think of innovative marketing strategies
  • Community Management - A community manager monitors the community of a certain brand and company and aims to increase their loyalty and increase the member base. Junior roles exist in this sector at a higher rate than other sectors, though there's also senior level roles in this field. Skills you may need to land a community manager job in esports:
    • Great communication skills
    • An understanding of the fans of your organization
    • Creative ideas learned from fan interaction to feed back to marketers
  • Public Relations - Frequently written as PR, people who work in Public Relations are the ones who’ll be in charge of the press releases of a company, coordinating with any external journalists to increase brand reach and managing any negative situations the company faces. PR employees are usually intermediate to senior roles in a company. Esports jobs in PR will need the following skills:
    • Top-notch communications skills and strong writing ability
    • Knowledge of planning and managing events
    • Ability to build relationships with the media
  • Social Media - Social media professionals aim to grow the company’s social channels and push engaging content. Social media jobs are open to juniors in smaller teams, but in big companies they’ll require a couple years of experience at least. Social media jobs in esports are very common these days, and here are the skills you’ll need to succeed in esports social media:
    • Understanding of social media - knowing Twitter, Facebook and more channels back to front
    • Creative with a sense of humour to grow pages and build engagement in unique ways
    • A knack for content that you can post on your pages

7. Business

The business side of esports needs knowledgeable professionals that know how to not only drive their company forward, but also the industry at large.

  • Business Development - This sector is a key one to any company. People in business development are champions of building new customers, driving more revenue for the company and growing the business. It should go without saying, but this is a job for people with multiple years experience behind them, except in rare cases when companies hire new biz dev candidates to work under more experienced managers. Here are the skills that’ll help you succeed in business development:
    • Problem-solving skills
    • Being a creative thinker who can come up with new ways to grow the business
    • Negotiation skills - with customers, suppliers and other entities
  • Human Resources - Human Resources, frequently called HR, is the sector of a company that deals with recruitment, the hiring process, employee processes, payroll and onboarding. HR jobs can be good for juniors and we see a fair amount of internships in the sector. Here’s what you’ll need if you’re trying to get into an esports HR position:
    • Recruitment skills
    • Good organization and planning
    • Good relationship-building skills

So there you have it. An overview of the kinds of jobs you can expect to find in esports, what the common work duties the position entails are and what skills you’ll need to increase your chance of landing such an esports job.

There are, of course, more jobs in esports that we haven’t been able to list, but we hope this has given you some sort of indication what types of jobs in esports to expect to crop up on our job board, and whether you and your skills are suited to them.

If you think one of these professions sounds right for you, begin as early as you can building experience in relevant fields and honing some of the skills we list with each role. This will help you secure a job in the sector when you begin applying for them.

If you’re still stuck for how to break into esports, check our comprehensive cover of job advice for esports, or hit up the Hitmarker team through our Twitter DMs or by emailing [email protected] to see if we can throw you some advice.

Image credits: DreamHack / Jennika Ojala