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Who’s Working Where: Introducing Our In-Depth Guide to Jobs in the Drone Industry

BY Zacc Dukowitz
5 July 2018

As of July 1, 2018, there are a whopping 95,268 FAA-certified remote pilots in the United States.

So where are all these pilots finding work?

According to a recent report by Skyward, some of the sectors where drone adoption is growing are Construction & Engineering, Government, and Transportation & Warehousing.

Source: Skyward’s Report on the State of Drone’s in Big Business

SkyLogic Research also released a report back in October that looked at the areas where drone service providers are working.

That report revealed that two of the primary areas for drone service providers were Aerial Videography and Surveying—which is interesting, because these areas don’t directly align with the Skyward report, which looked at where the jobs actually are for drone pilots (as opposed to looking at the drone services being offered by drone pilots).

This information suggests that there are many missed opportunities for drone pilots to take up new types of work. Our new guide to drone jobs might help close the gap.

Source: SkyLogic Research’s 2017 Drone Market Sector Report

Despite all these data points, drone jobs can still seem pretty abstract if you haven’t done them.

Even for drone pilots, if you’ve never done, say, mapping for a construction site, you might wonder—what does that type of work actually look like on the ground?

Our In-Depth Guide to Drone Jobs

To make things more concrete when it comes to the type of work being done in the drone industry—and to help people hunt for jobs—we just released a huge, in-depth guide to jobs in the drone industry.

The guide takes a close look at the top 11 sectors where drone pilots are finding work, as well as provides multiple resources for those looking for work in the drone industry, either as a pilot or in other, non-pilot roles at drone companies.

Here’s an overview of what’s covered in our new resource, Drone Jobs Guide: How and Where to Find Work as a Drone Pilot or Industry Professional.

The Top 11 Sectors Where Drone Pilots Are Finding Work

For each sector included in the guide, we cover:

  • A description of the work in the sector covered, including details about seasonality, what the work actually looks like on the ground, and the types of skill sets needed to do the work.
  • The pay range for those doing work in the sector covered.
  • The types of drones and software pilots recommend using for work in the sector covered.
  • The missions drone pilots typically fly in this sector.
  • Any additional resources we’ve been able to track down related to the type of work being covered.

A quick note—there are lots of other places where drone pilots are working. However, for the purposes of this resource, we wanted to list the top sectors, as uncovered in our research and in our conversations with our students and community members.

Here are our top 11 sectors where drone pilots are finding work—click on each one to be taken to the corresponding section in our new guide:

Job Hunting Resources

In addition to covering the different sectors where drone pilots are finding work, we also wanted to provide information that would help people looking for work.

To do this, we devoted four chapters of our Drone Jobs guide to different aspects of finding work in the drone industry.

Drone Pilot Work

If you want to build your own drone business, we have a list of seven things to consider to help you get started, including things like getting drone insurance, tackling flight proficiency, and doing some initial business planning.

And in our section on finding work through drone pilot networks, we cover some reasons why pilots join networks while building up their own clientele, as well as a list of some of the top pilot networks out there.

Other Jobs in the Drone Industry

Of course, working in the drone industry doesn’t just mean you’re flying a drone. The industry is growing, and there are lots of companies out there looking to hire people in all kinds of positions, from marketing and sales, to HR, to product development, and more.

We’ve listed out 25+ growing companies in various sectors of the drone industry that are hiring right now, and provided links directly to their careers page to help you with your job hunt. If you’ve been looking to break into a job in the drone industry, but you don’t necessarily want to fly a drone, we hope this list is a helpful resource in your hunt.

And finally, just in case you need even more tools to help you find your dream drone job, we’ve included a search tool in the guide that populates all the different drone jobs out there in the U.S.

The jobs listed here present a wide range of opportunities in the industry, from pilot positions, to data management, to engineering and beyond.


Want to learn more? Explore our new Drone Jobs guide here.

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