How to Get a Cannabis Job in Washington DC
Want to Land a Dispensary Job? Here’s What You Need to Know
As marijuana legalization continues to flourish across the country, dispensary employment opportunities have steadily increased.
Since medical marijuana was legalized in the District of Columbia 3 years ago, dispensary operators have been flooded with inquiries for jobs, specifically as dispensary technicians. Since the Medical Marijuana Program is operated by the District’s Department of Health, dispensaries shy away from the term “budtender.” Some dispensaries also advertise the position as “sales associate.”
Washington, D.C. has specific criteria one must have before being able to apply for a dispensary job.
- Applicant can not have been convicted of any felony before filing the application.
- The applicant can not have been convicted of a misdemeanor for a drug-related offense before filing the application.
- The applicant may not be someone whose authority to participate in the Medical Marijuana Program has been previously revoked by the Department.
- The applicant must certify that he/she does not owe more than $100.00 to the District of Columbia government.
This application does require notarization of a signed statement confirming that you meet these criteria.
Following an official offer, pending employees are required to undergo a background check and fingerprinting that the hiring dispensary will pay for and is required before an employee may begin working at the dispensary site. This process is completed at the Department of Health and takes just a few minutes. This step is crucial for most dispensaries since they pay the applicant’s fee; and also why those hiring whittle the selection down to the best cover letters and resume.
This wait process generally takes about 30 days, so applicants should plan accordingly. Once hired, some dispensaries will pay for the new employee to undergo certification training, which can include updated information on laws, dispensary rules and procedures and basic knowledge of cannabis science.
As with any search for employment, there are some things applicants should know, particularly in this newly growing industry. Here are a few tips that can help in successfully landing a gig with a dispensary in the District of Columbia:
- Your first step is a brief but well-written industry resume. It’s a good idea to mention why you are interested in the field and point out any background you have (if any in the industry).
- Because dispensaries are retail environments, customer service skills are a must since dispensary technicians deal directly with patients.
- Brush up on your knowledge of a few strains. This gives interviewers a first-hand example of how you will handle questions patients might ask.