Cannabis Hiring Criteria in Late 2019

There’s no magic formula guaranteed to land you a job in the cannabis space. There are, however, a few tips to keep in mind when planning your cannabis career move. Pulling from years of experience in cannabis recruiting, we’ve noticed the following cannabis industry hiring trends.

Experience in Other Regulated Industries is Attractive

Hiring companies are looking to other regulated industries such as finance, chemical, medical, and pharmaceutical to source their leadership teams. These professionals understand the logistical complexities of operating in business climates that are always in flux and under heavy legal scrutiny. The same is true for cannabis. Because business owners must protect their companies, they often employ people from other regulated industries to accommodate this.

cannabis industry hiringCannabis Industry Knowledge is Extremely Valuable

We recommend that serious candidates in the cannabis space stay on top of local and national news through advocacy groups like NORML. Keeping up-to-date on news and trends helps companies identify areas of opportunity and plan for the future. Therefore, long-term employees with expansive knowledge base are always valuable.

Cannabis is a Science

If one is interested in pursuing employment in the cultivation or extraction sectors, science degrees like chemistry and biology are of high regard. Those with a science education should display this on their cannabis resume for the best results.

Project Management History Helps

As the cannabis industry continues to evolve into a mainstream business, profit margins are becoming slimmer. Conversely, government regulation is continuing to mature and grow. As such, many hiring companies understand the need to onboard organized, detail-oriented employees.

When it Comes to Cannabis Industry Hiring, Compliance is a Must

The need for qualified compliance personnel has skyrocketed over the past couple of years. In 2018, with federal uncertainties looming in the Attorney General’s office and news of industry-leading dispensary chains being shut down in Denver, CO (due to compliance issues with cannabis sales procedures) compliance is perhaps the most crucial facet of the modern cannabis business.

cannabis industry hiringThe Cannabis Industry Loves to Network

Hiring companies often prefer that candidates have a pre-established network in the cannabis space, especially in regards to sales and marketing jobs. While this could be a simple as a group of friends who grow for personal use, a Rolodex of real industry connections is always helpful.

The Cannabis Industry is Hiring Retail Employees

There is an obvious exchange of professional aptitudes between cannabis dispensaries and retail experiences in places like restaurants, department stores, hardware stores, and so on. This experience largely relates to the skills involved in confidently and clearly explaining product knowledge. Retail associates also often have inventory tracking experience, which employers find valuable.

Cannabis and Technology Are Evolving Together

The cannabis sector is continuously becoming more technologically savvy. For people with IT backgrounds, opportunities for cannabis industry hiring abound. There is demand for a variety of software companies, including seed-to-sale, POS systems, customer retention services, smart grow technology, inventory tracking, CRM platforms, and more.

Community Attracts Community

Sales teams are what drive the revenue for any given business; talented salespeople are always in demand. In recreational cannabis states, branded cannabis product companies look to experienced territory sales reps from outside industries such as wine sales to manage accounts with dispensaries. Self-sufficiency and organization are a must among qualified cannabis sales teams.

A Palette for Cannabis Pays Off

Hiring companies in the dispensary and cannabis product verticals love to see candidates who have a refined taste for marijuana products. Those who not only know the terms and buzzwords but those who speak of them passionately and can easily describe their nuances are valuable in the cannabis industry.

Recruiters Love Inventory Management Experience

Accurate inventory control is essential to the success of any cannabis business due mainly to compliance regulation. Applicable backgrounds include 3rd party inventory companies as well as complex, multi-faceted retail operations. Most cannabis industry hiring consultants love candidates with inventory management experience


The cannabis industry is expansive and in need of employees from different backgrounds. Consider these points when applying for your next cannabis industry job. Finally, if you are interested in learning more about career opportunities with M&F Talent, please see our open jobs.