If you have an interest in the gaming industry, or a casino job just sounds like fun to you, perhaps a Harrah’s job might be a good career choice for you.
Harrah’s Entertainment was founded by William F. Harrah in 1937, in the form of a small bingo parlor in Reno, Nevada. But it was only in the early 1970’s that Harrah’s began the campaign of expansion that would eventually make their name the household word that it is today.
In 1971, Harrah’s went public, in 1972 they were listed on the American Stock Exchange, and in 1973 they became the first casino company to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
Eight years later, Harrah’s was bought out by Holiday Inn, and a long period of expansion began, with new openings that included, Harrah’s Atlantic City (1980), Bill’s Casino (1987), Harrah’s Laughlin (1988), Holiday Casino Las Vegas becomes Harrah’s (1992), Harrah’s Joliet and Harrah’s Tunica (1993), Harrah’s Bossier City and Harrah’s Phoenix (1994). More casinos would open in the next ten years, and in 2005, Harrah’s bought out Caesars Entertainment. In an odd quirk of corporate marketing, Harrah’s would officially assume the name Caesars (note lack of an apostrophe) Entertainment in 2010.
Today Harrah’s, (or, more officially, Caesars Entertainment), is the largest gaming company in the world, with 40 casinos, (6 in Las Vegas alone), and over 8 Billion US dollars in annual revenue. For comparison purposes, note that of the 227 nations and territories in the world today, fully one third of them have a Gross Domestic Product, (the value of all goods and services produced within the nation in a year), less than the annual revenue of Harrah’s Entertainment.
Harrah’s is a very large organization, and they do far more than run casinos. But a bookkeeping job is a bookkeeping job no matter where you work, so let’s look at some of the entry-level jobs that make Harrah’s unique.
Pit Clerk – This is a support position in the gaming pit, and a common position for new employees to start. You keep the supplies stocked, you answer phones, you change ribbons in the printers, you do filing, you enter information for new players, and generally back up the pit supervisors in any area that needs help. Must be 21 years of age.
Blackjack Dealer – You need a year or so of experience at a job where you deal with customers directly. You need good manual dexterity, and you need good peripheral vision. You greet the customers, deal the cards, talk your professional “patter” as you run the game, calculate winners and losers, and collect and pay bets, while protecting the casino and its customers from cheats by careful observation.
Count Room Rep – You receive the drop boxes from Pit Operations, count the money inside, compare your count to the data shown on the terminal, and enter the results. You need good manual dexterity and math skills, and a high school diploma or GED. Previous money-handling experience is preferred, but even a job as a clerk at your local 7-11 counts, and its not an absolute requirement.
Poker Cashier/Dealer – You distribute money to guests via check cashing, credit/debit card transactions, or cashing in of gaming chips, tokens, and coins. You fill in as a poker dealer when needed. You need basic computer knowledge, good people skills, and good math skills, as well as a high school diploma or GED.
Anonymous feedback from current and former Harrah’s employees reveals an average level of employee satisfaction, neither good nor bad. On the other hand, only a rather embarrassing 49% indicate that they “approve of” CEO Gary W. Loveman.
In 2010, Human Rights Campaign named Harrah’s one of the “Best Places To Work For LGBT Equality”.
Current local jobs
The careers site at Harrah’s (http://caesars.hodesiq.com/careers/Link_nav/job-careers.asp) is one of the more helpful ones we’ve reviewed. When you land at the page, click the gold button at right marked “GO!”.
Box 1 should be set to United States. Box 2 you choose your state. Box 3 lists the properties within your chosen state. You need to either select one or tick the “select all” box. Employment Status lets you search only a certain type of jobs, part-time, full-time, etc. Department I suggest you leave set to Search All. Shift lets you search only jobs for a specific shift, Day, Swing, or Graveyard. Once you have all that set as you like it, click the red button below to search. By default the results are displayed alphabetically by the job title, but you can click the other column headers, (e.g. Property or Department), to sort by that characteristic. Then just click on the job you want, read more about it, and use the link at bottom right to apply online.
If you do not find the job you want, then click “search jobs” at the very bottom of any page to go back to the page with the search criteria, and use the links at the bottom of that page (below the red search button) to register for their job agent, so you will be informed when there is a job that suits your needs.
And now for our usual collection of bits and pieces –
- Average wage for a Beverage Server is $8.65 per hour, with reports varying from a low of $4.00 per hour to a high of $13.00 per hour.
- Average wage for a Cashier is $10.83 per hour, with reports varying from a low of $10.00 per hour to a high of $12.00 per hour.
- Average wage for a Dealer is $7.55 per hour, with reports varying from a low of $7.00 per hour to a high of $8.00 per hour. Obviously, a dealer makes most of his/her money on tips.
- Applicants report an interview process consisting of a group panel meeting, followed by a one-on-one audition at which the applicant is asked to demonstrate relevant job skills, e.g. a bartender makes drinks, a dealer deals cards, etc.
- All applicants should expect to undergo a drug test and a thorough background check.
- Sample interview question – “What would you do with a rude, drunken guest?”.
- Sample interview question – “Make up a radio interview for Harrah’s”
- Sample interview question – “What was your best customer service experience?”
- Sample interview question – “Three words to describe your personality?”
- Sample interview question – “What are a few projects you’ve completed during your last two years at school?”
And there you have a sample of what you need to know to get a Harrah’s job. The working conditions are demanding, and it takes a special type of personality, but if you are suited, the potential income levels are far above anything you’ll earn flipping burgers.