Column: Work in Grand’s 2.0 mission shows future employees they can work, live and play in Grand County

Patrick Brower, Big Business Initiative
Patrick Brower/Courtesy Photo

People who work in Grand County usually have to live in Grand County and if they want to stay they will mostly want to play in Grand County.

That’s the guiding mission behind changes to the Work In Grand web-based platform that functions as an employment aid for employees and employers while serving as the county’s ever-elusive housing resource.

Now, it’s adding lifestyle and experience to its formula as it strives to be a one-stop-shop for people who want to work, live and play in Grand County.

The Work in Grand website is a platform originally developed and planned by DiAnn Butler, the economic developer for Grand County. It functions as an online resource for employers looking for workers, for employees looking for work, and for employees and employers hoping to find accommodation.

The site had up to 300 jobs listed on the site and served as a resource for people curious about working in Grand County. It is now going through an upgrade to Work In Grand version 2.0. Key to these changes is that large employers who want to use the view to find workers are onboard.

Previously, the use of the site was free. There is now a buy-in for those who want to list jobs and work opportunities. But people will still get one free job offer per year.

Thanks to this membership, it will now be easier for employers to measure the impact of their job offers on the site. There will also be additional benefits for the various packages made available for use of the site, such as access to employee lists, social media posts and more.

In addition, members of the chamber receive a discount for their registrations, with some return of this income on the chambers.

But there is more. The site now goes beyond jobs, work and housing. It plans to expand to include features and content that will enable future employees and current employees to understand and enjoy the benefits of the Greater County working lifestyle.

Butler and his team of web developers and local employers know that recruiting and retaining workers involves more than just giving them a job and a salary. It is also giving them a life, or as some would say, a way of life. And not just any lifestyle, a lifestyle fulfilling, fun and attractive enough to make employees want to move here and stay here.

It’s all a continuation of that once-famous catchphrase for resident ski enthusiasts: “I came here for the winter but stayed for the summer.” The implication is that people may come here to work at the ski resort but stay to live here when they discover how fun and enjoyable summers can be.

The thinking behind these new website updates goes in that direction. In other words, the site will incorporate a resource clearinghouse where employers who offer great amenities to visitors (think lift tickets, boat rentals, ski lessons, guided hikes, etc.) can also offer them free or at substantial discounts to workers. The idea here is to broaden the view that workers can have of this diverse and fun country in which they work.

A lift working here for the winter might have absolutely no idea that Rocky Mountain National Park is a short drive from the slopes. Someone who came here to work at the front desk of an accommodation establishment might not know that there is plenty of fun to be had on the local lakes and backcountry trails.

Broadening their perspective on these great amenities just might be the trick that keeps employees in the county so they can work, stay and play.

At a recent Work in Grand 2.0 session, it was agreed to add employer-led action items to guide the website and workforce challenges in general. Specific committees have been formed to address workforce development in the county.

So go to Work in Grand ( soon and find out how there’s an online resource for workers and employers working to spread the idea that it’s great to live and work in Grand.

Contact DiAnn Butler at [email protected] for more information.

Patrick Brower is the Enterprise Facilitator for the Grand Enterprise Initiative. He offers free, confidential business management coaching to anyone looking to start or grow a business in the Grand County. He is also the author of “KILLDOZER: The True Story of the Colorado Bulldozer Rampage”. He can be reached by calling 970-531-0632 or at [email protected]

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