Have you ever dreamed of working on a dude ranch in Wyoming? Or maybe being a camp counselor, introducing kids to the wonders of nature?
I was a camp counselor in my 20s and it was one of my favorite experiences.
If the traditional corporate life – being stuck indoors working 9-5 and then going home and spending your evening watching Netflix – feels like torture, then CoolWorks might just have the opportunities you are looking for.
CoolWorks is a job board that matches seasonal, outdoor, adventure jobs with hard-working folks who want to spend a summer (or winter) doing something different. All companies and jobs are vetted for reliability and can be easily searched by either category or state.
What is CoolWorks?
CoolWorks is a seasonal job platform that lists various career opportunities, ranging from theme parks, ranches, and ski resorts. Different fun, historic, and outdoor businesses post list their job opportunities with CoolWorks. The majority of these jobs are in the hospitality industry and involve physical activity such as natural guides, cleaners, ski-instructors, etc
Most of the jobs are seasonal, although, you can find year-round jobs on CoolWorks if you look. You can also pair up different seasonal jobs for more steady, yet varied, work. For example, you could work at Yellowstone all summer then switch to a nearby ski resort for winter work.
But the cool part about CoolWorks is that these are not jobs you’ll find on your typical job board. I mean, where else can you find an opportunity to make bronze sculptures in a Buddhist center in northern California?
Types of Jobs You Can Find CoolWorks?
As the name suggests, CoolWorks goes beyond traditional jobs. Real jobs on the site at the time of this writing are:
- Rafting guide in Colorado
- Be in a lumberjack show in Alaska
- Camp counselor in Maine
- Work on a ranch in Montana
There were also plenty of traditional jobs in non-traditional locations. Such as chef, marketing manager, retail sales, housekeeping, general customer service, etc. So you certainly don’t have to step outside your comfort zone too much if you don’t want to. You can do “regular” jobs in cool places.
You can search for jobs by state, or by category. There are 36 categories which include:
- Administrative jobs
- Camp jobs
- Driving and transportation jobs
- Education jobs
- Food and beverage jobs
- Guest services
- Guide jobs and trip leaders
- Lodge and resort jobs
- Maintenance jobs
- Managers and supervisors
- Outdoor adventures
- Sales and retail
- Ski resort jobs
Many seasonal jobs you will find through CoolWorks are in the hospitality industry. They range from guides and trainers to housekeepers and front desk agents.
Also, most of the jobs you will find through CoolWorks will be during peak tourist season. Any job you land will likely be a busy one with little time for rest. Yes, you’ll work hard but the experience of spending the summer in an awesome location will give you perks you won’t find anywhere else.
Plus, you’ll meet a lot of other people who are also looking for a less traditional life. It will truly be an unforgettable experience.
Why are Many Jobs in CoolWorks Seasonal?
The types of jobs that are listed on CoolWorks are often in tourist areas and therefore will have a busy and slow season. A ski resort could need dozens or hundreds of employees in the winter and only a handful in the summer. The opposite is true for national parks which are typically busy in the summer and less so in the winter.
Even though many jobs are seasonal, you can have a whole year-round in employment. As you build your portfolio of work, you’ll likely find jobs you love where you can return over and over. Find a summer job and a winter job and change jobs with seasons.
How Long Do Seasonal Jobs Last?
The length of seasonal jobs depends on three factors; time of the year, location, and employer. Some contracts can be short while others might have unusually long seasons.
Long summer seasons begin from April to October. Many National Park listings have long summer seasons. If lucky, you can work for five to six months. On the other hand, typical summer jobs run from mid-May through to mid-September. Ranches in Alaska prefer hiring during this season.
Unlike during the summer, winter jobs are comparatively shorter. A regular winter season runs from mid-December till the end of March or early April. Also, there are short winter seasons during the holiday crunch period up to the President’s Day Weekend.
Is CoolWorks in My Area?
At the time of this writing, CoolWorks has job listings in 35 states. Although they are heavily concentrated in Wyoming, Montana, Alaska, Colorado, Utah, and California.
But part of the allure of these types of jobs is travel, so you may not be looking for jobs in your home town. Employers are expecting to hire people from all over the country and you are often going to towns where housing will be scarce during the peak season. To accommodate this, employers will often provide housing and sometimes even meals.
Also, many of these jobs are in remote locations. Each listing states if the location has cell service and internet access. If you are looking to get away from it all, you’ve come to the right place.
How to Apply for Jobs on CoolWorks
You will apply for each job directly with the hiring company. Each listing explains exactly how to apply. Often times, you’ll fill out an online application or send your resume to the provided email address.
Do Jobs on CoolWorks Have Benefits?
Seasonal jobs do not typically offer benefits such as health insurance or a 401(k). However, you will be able to find opportunities that offer housing and sometimes even meals.
The type of housing depends on your employer and place of works. You can get varying residential units, ranging from private rooms and condos to shared rooms.
Also, some employers offer meals to employees. Meals may be included as part of your compensation or it could be deducted from your pay. Be sure you are clear on this before you get started.
What about My Kids and Pets?
The majority of jobs on CoolWorks are going to require you to be relatively unencumbered. You will often be staying in employer housing which will not accommodate kids or pets.
There definitely are jobs on CoolWorks where you find your own housing. This, of course, may allow you to bring your children and pets. However, consider the long hours you may be working before committing to this arrangement.
If you have loved ones (furry or otherwise) that need daily attention and care from you it will be difficult to find opportunities on CoolWorks.
Is CoolWorks Legit?
Yes, CoolWorks is a legitimate job board that works, connects you with real companies looking to hiring seasonal workers and has been in business for 20 years.
They vet all companies and organizations listing jobs. The importance of this vetting is to ensure that the job provider is legitimate and reliable.
In fact, according to “CoolworksMatt” on Reddit, they will even remove employers from the site if they get reports that they are not treating their employees fairly. He goes on to say that it’s important to vet your future employer yourself, especially if you will be traveling to a remote area. Contact them and ask for former employee references.
Here’s a screenshot of that comment. Check out the full thread here.
CoolWorks vets all companies and organizations listing jobs through its site. The importance of this vetting is to ensure that the job provider is legitimate and reliable.
The Bottom Line on CoolWorks
CoolWorks is pretty cool. If you are looking for a chance to get away and experience something new this is definitely something you’ll want to check out.
It’s certainly not for everyone. Someone with kids or pets will have a hard time finding jobs that will work for them. But if you are relatively unattached and looking for an adventure, CoolWorks is just what you are looking for.