As the name suggests, royalty coordinators are concerned with all aspects of royalties and their payment. They track and record incoming royalty payments and statements, review and analyze the data to ensure that no one is underpaying or overpaying, contact sources directly to resolve issues when they arise, and prepare and issue royalty statements to the copyright holders of the song or recording.
At its heart, this position is a mix of bookkeeping, analysis, and problem-solving. Royalty coordinators spend the majority of their time entering and combing through data, as well as devising new ways to organize and display it. But when they're not, they're working with the real people behind those numbers to ensure that everyone is being fairly compensated—a task that requires a mixture of diplomacy and straightforwardness. This position exists in a variety of industries; where there are copyrights, there are royalty coordinators. In the music business, these royalties are collected for the use of copyrighted compositions or recordings, and are generally owed to publishers, record labels, and artists.
At a Glance
This is an entry-level position that generally requires at least a bachelor's degree in business or accounting, and preferably also a previous internship in the music industry. Because royalty coordinators work with several departments, including accounting, licensing, and business affairs, as well as with artists and their representatives, this position can be a great opportunity to learn various aspects of the music business and work toward another position, such as licensing representative or business manager.
Royalty coordinators work at performing rights organizations (PROs), music publishers, record labels, and companies where music is central to their product, such as online music streaming services. These organizations typically publish opportunities for work on job-posting websites. As always, internships offer an opportunity to get ahead.
- Mathematics and finance
- Bookkeeping and data entry
- Data analysis
- Microsoft Excel
- Attention to detail
- Problem solving
Royalty coordinators should be mathematically and analytically minded, with close attention to detail and a knack for finding and correcting discrepancies. As a large part of the job is reviewing and analyzing royalty data, the ideal royalty coordinator has a love for data, organization, and problem-solving. It's also helpful to have strong communication skills and a passion for music business. Those who are willing to go above and beyond by discovering or creating better ways to track and report royalties have an opportunity to get ahead in the business.
Royalty coordinators work regular business hours in an office setting. They are unlikely to travel as part of the job.