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Working as a Referee

If you want to know a sport inside out, then becoming a referee may bring a satisfactory role. Referring games may bring you some great benefits. You can be outside and run around, enjoy exciting games, and make a few dollars. Being a referee, you're rendering service to coaches, players, and fans. It's an incredible opportunity to give back to your community.

Being a sports referee, generally, you may preside over sporting or athletic events. Maintain the fairness and standards of an event or competition. Your core duty is to officiate the sporting events and games. Other than this, you may inspect sporting equipment, settle claims for infarction, enforce rules of the games and assess penalties. Being a referee, you may work for a professional sports organization, school, or community organizations. For some sports like boxing, you may work independently while for others you may work in groups.

To become a referee, generally, you may require a high school diploma and training. To be successful in a fast-paced environment, you must have an eye for detail, strong decision-making skills, physically active, and an ability to anticipate, observe and judge a play. As a sports referee, you might get in games, such as basketball, football, boxing, soccer, or volleyball.

Typically, you may work part-time. However, you may need to work irregular hours, weekends, or evenings for training sessions or seminars. Working as a referee, you may work few hours and make some pretty good money. Not only that, but as you improve and work higher level games, the money improves too.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a referee. For example, did you know that they make an average of $27.72 an hour? That's $57,663 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 6% and produce 1,300 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Referee Do

There are certain skills that many referees have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed communication skills, decisionmaking skills and good vision.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a referee, we found that a lot of resumes listed 43.7% of referees included safety rules, while 6.3% of resumes included cpr, and 6.1% of resumes included safe environment. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the referee job title. But what industry to start with? Most referees actually find jobs in the education and hospitality industries.

How To Become a Referee

If you're interested in becoming a referee, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 67.4% of referees have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 2.5% of referees have master's degrees. Even though most referees have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a referee. When we researched the most common majors for a referee, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or high school diploma degrees. Other degrees that we often see on referee resumes include associate degree degrees or master's degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a referee. In fact, many referee jobs require experience in a role such as cashier. Meanwhile, many referees also have previous career experience in roles such as internship or sales associate.

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Average Salary$57,663
Job Growth Rate6%

Referee Career Paths

Top Careers Before Referee

Cashier
14.2 %

Top Careers After Referee

Cashier
12.8 %

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Referee

Referees in America make an average salary of $57,663 per year or $28 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $102,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $32,000 per year.
Average Salary
$57,663

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary
Albuquerque, NM
Salary Range66k - 121k$90k$89,658
Wenatchee, WA
Salary Range67k - 115k$88k$88,099
Iowa City, IA
Salary Range65k - 116k$87k$87,261
Cibolo, TX
Salary Range61k - 116k$84k$84,209
Boston, MA
Salary Range61k - 112k$83k$83,189
Frederick, MD
Salary Range58k - 106k$79k$78,897
$49k
$121k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Flag Football Referee-Greater Palm Harbor Branch
Flag Football Referee-Greater Palm Harbor Branch
YMCA of The Suncoast
YMCA of The Suncoast
01/15/2021
01/15/2021
$19,28401/15/2021
$19,284
Referee-Jorgensen Ymca
Referee-Jorgensen Ymca
YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne
YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne
10/28/2020
10/28/2020
$17,74010/28/2020
$17,740
Referee (Basketball and Soccer)-James P. Gills Branch
Referee (Basketball and Soccer)-James P. Gills Branch
YMCA of The Suncoast
YMCA of The Suncoast
10/23/2020
10/23/2020
$19,28410/23/2020
$19,284
Youth Soccer Referee
Youth Soccer Referee
Missoula Family YMCA
Missoula Family YMCA
09/08/2020
09/08/2020
$25,04409/08/2020
$25,044
Referee-Jackson R. Lehman Ymca
Referee-Jackson R. Lehman Ymca
YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne
YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne
08/08/2020
08/08/2020
$17,74008/08/2020
$17,740
See More Recent Salaries

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Referee Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Referee. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Referee Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Referee resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Detailed Information

Referee Demographics

Gender

male

71.0 %

female

24.5 %

unknown

4.5 %

Ethnicity

White

79.7 %

Hispanic or Latino

7.4 %

Black or African American

6.0 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

64.0 %

French

8.6 %

German

5.5 %
See More Demographics

Referee Education

Majors

Business
17.5 %

Degrees

Bachelors

67.4 %

High School Diploma

15.0 %

Associate

11.3 %
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Referee

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 43.7% of referees listed safety rules on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and decisionmaking skills are important as well.

  • Safety Rules, 43.7%
  • CPR, 6.3%
  • Safe Environment, 6.1%
  • Game Rules, 5.7%
  • Communication, 4.0%
  • Other Skills, 34.2%
  • See All Referee Skills

Best States For a Referee

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a referee. The best states for people in this position are Alaska, New Jersey, New York, and Oregon. Referees make the most in Alaska with an average salary of $99,484. Whereas in New Jersey and New York, they would average $98,437 and $98,253, respectively. While referees would only make an average of $91,034 in Oregon, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Alaska

Total Referee Jobs:
1
Highest 10% Earn:
$147,000
Location Quotient:
6.92
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. New Mexico

Total Referee Jobs:
1
Highest 10% Earn:
$155,000
Location Quotient:
2.11
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Jersey

Total Referee Jobs:
4
Highest 10% Earn:
$169,000
Location Quotient:
1.63
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Referee Employers

1. YMCA of Greater Indianapolis
3.6
Avg. Salary: 
$38,986
Referees Hired: 
208+
2. Florida State Parks
3.9
Avg. Salary: 
$54,858
Referees Hired: 
14+
3. Delano Park
3.8
Avg. Salary: 
$56,107
Referees Hired: 
13+
4. Boys & Girls Clubs of America
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$37,573
Referees Hired: 
10+
5. NFL
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$52,319
Referees Hired: 
9+
6. Williamson County
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$49,931
Referees Hired: 
8+

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