Coaches teach amateur or professional athletes the skills they need to succeed at their sport. Scouts look for new players and evaluate their skills and likelihood for success at the college, amateur, or professional level. Many coaches are also involved in scouting.
Coaches and scouts often work irregular hours, including evenings, weekends, and holidays. Full-time coaches usually work more than 40 hours a week for several months during the sports season. Coaches travel frequently to sporting events. Scouts may be required to travel more extensively when searching for talented athletes.
How to Become a Coach or Scout
Coaches and scouts typically need a bachelor’s degree. They must also have extensive knowledge of the game. Coaches typically gain this knowledge through their own experiences playing the sport at some level. Although previous playing experience may be beneficial, it is typically not required for most scouting jobs.
Employment of coaches and scouts is projected to grow 6 percent from 2014 to 2024, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Increasing participation in high school and college sports will boost demand for coaches and scouts.
This occupation supported 243,900 jobs in 2012 and 250,600 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 2.7%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 14.8% in 2022 to 280,100 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 251,100, compared with an observed value of 250,600, 0.2% lower than expected. This indicates current employment trends are about on track with the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 6.1% in 2024 to 265,400 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 287,300 jobs for 2024, 8.3% higher than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are much worse than the 2012 trend within this occupation.