Become a Trip Prep Specialist
The foundation of our extraordinary guest experience is preparation, organization and service. And our worldwide team of Trip Prep Specialists (TPSs)—who assist with facilities, logistics and the maintenance of our bikes, vans and trailers—is key to this success.
We hire TPSs through both dedicated Trip Prep Specialists Hiring Events and Trip Leader Hiring Events.
What We're Looking For
The Trip Prep Specialist position requires someone with strong communication, organizational and teamwork skills. This individual approaches their work in a systematic way, has impeccable self-sufficiency, takes initiative to solve problems on their own, has the ability to maintain all of Backroads' bikes and related equipment and has the desire to create a great working environment with other Field Staff and the Global Operation Team.
Trip Prep Specialists Job Description, Pay & Benefits
Trip Prep Specialists (TPSs) work behind the scenes in tandem with Trip Leaders to ensure smooth Trip Logistics before and after each departure. The TPS position requires someone with a systematic and methodic approach to numerous logistical tasks, self-sufficiency, organization, attention to inventory detail, ability to maintain exceptional condition of all bike equipment and the desire to create a great working environment with Trip Leaders and global operation teams. The TPS role is based in the hubs of our many regions but does not work "on trip." As a TPS, you will likely work 35 - 40 hours each week with the amount of work varying based on the number of departures. You will be responsible for preparing and managing bikes, vans, trailers and trip-related paperwork. TPSs may also be scheduled to transport equipment from one region to another on "unit drives." This may be a quick trip from Tuscany to Southern France, or a longer haul from Utah to Alaska.
The following list of qualifications serves as our guide for exceptional TPS candidates. You'll see that we have very high expectations of our TPSs.
- 21 years of age or older
- A valid driver's license and clean driving record
- English fluency
- Legally authorized to work in the U.S., Canada or France
- Ability to lift 50 pounds
- Available for work between May 15th - October 15th*
- Are you committed to delivering the highest level of quality and service to Backroads' guests and coworkers?
- Are you detail oriented while still being able to keep the bigger picture in mind?
- Are you a strong communicator and can you lead or work in a team to accomplish a common goal?
- Do you have a positive attitude and take pride in the work you do?
- Do you have strong logistical, organizational and problem solving skills?
- Do you strive for efficiency and take initiative to solve problems on your own without much direction?
- Do you enjoy understanding how things work and look forward to learning what you don't know?
- Are you comfortable working long hours and doing very physically challenging work where lifting and moving equipment is an everyday task?
- Do you have a strong mechanical aptitude or pick up new skills quickly?
- Do you enjoy working in an organization that has a culture of encouraging personal and professional growth?
- Do you thrive working in a fast-paced environment with some of the best coworkers and in some of the most beautiful places in the world?
*We offer training dates sooner than May 15th for those who can start before this date. We require all applicants to be available to come to a Hiring Event and Training, as well as full availability in September, our busiest month of the year.
If you can meet the above requirements, we invite you to look at the questions below. If you find yourself answering yes frequently, then we want to meet you!
We're looking to hire TPSs to work in the following regions:
Europe: Tuscany, Dolomites, Provence, Loire Valley, Croatia, Sicily, Puglia, Catalonia, Iceland, Ireland, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Portugal, Andalucia, Brittany & Normandy, Bavaria, Piedmont, Parma, Switzerland, Pays Basques and Denmark.
United States: Anchorage, AK; Whitefish, MT; Jackson Hole, WY; Berkeley, CA; Anacortes, WA; Stowe, VT; St. George, UT; Bend, OR; Portland, ME; and Charleston, SC.
Canada: Canmore, AB; Nova Scotia, NA; Gulf Islands, BC; Quebec, QC.
First-year TPSs typically work in one - two different regions throughout the season (May-October). You will receive your specific schedule assignment during training.
Pay & Allowances
Trip Prep Specialists receive a competitive rate of pay. Detailed information about the compensation will be provided during the interview stage of our hiring process.
Allowances & Housing
Food allowances are provided for days you're traveling for work. Housing is provided for all field staff so you will not incur any out-of-pocket expenses for housing during a season of work. Many of our regions worldwide have staff houses in wonderful places that are available to staff free of charge while working. Standard with these accommodations are computers, wireless internet and access to bikes for personal use. TPSs are also provided with a cell phone stipend to supplement communication costs.
Backroads provides all work-related travel throughout the course of the season. Travel to your starting hub (Salt Lake City, Utah; Canmore, Alberta or Pernes-Les-Fontaines, France) at the beginning of the season and to your home at the end of the season is your responsibility. TPSs enjoy keeping their own frequent flyer miles for travel, and may choose to stop over or extend their stay in desired locales within work-sponsored itineraries.
Backroads also offers several benefits to TPSs that are of a more recreational nature, including generous discounts with brand-name equipment and clothing companies; Backroads labeled gear (items vary each year), Backroads trip discounts for family and friends, and our favorite: Staff Ride: All Field Staff in their second season and beyond are invited to our annual Staff Ride (our version of the company picnic). Staff Ride is an all-inclusive multi-day bike trip held in a different destination each year such as: Vietnam, California, Greece, Thailand, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, etc.
Perhaps the most valuable benefit is enjoying a lifestyle few can match. Imagine working and having time off in some of the most desirable locations around the world. As a TPS, you benefit from a more consistent schedule and living space throughout the season and the chance to really get to know a region well. Being a Backroads TPS allows for a lifestyle of flexibility and variety that many value above all other benefits of the job.
Trip Prep Specialists employed by Backroads Utah enjoy these benefits:
- 401k Plan: TPSs are eligible to contribute (up to 75% of their income) to a 401k plan after six months of employment, and Backroads will match 20% of an employee's contributions (up to 15% of pay). Employees become 20% vested in the employer match each year and are fully vested after five years of employment.
- Medical, Dental & Vision Insurance: Backroads provides group medical, dental and vision insurance eligibility based on a field staff member's status. TPSs with extended seasonal status who work longer than six months are eligible on the first day of the month following their one year anniversary if they work 1560 hours or more in their first 12 months of employment (or 1560 or more hours during the previous calendar year in subsequent years of employment).
- Flex Plan: TPSs are also eligible to join our "Flex Plan" after three months of employment. This plan allows employees to set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualifying health and dependent daycare expenses.
- Workers Compensation Coverage: In the unfortunate event of a work-related injury all Backroads TPSs are covered by workers compensation insurance which provides coverage for medical care, disability pay and medically necessary transportation costs.
TPSs employed by our Canadian subsidiary enjoy these benefits:
- RRSP Plan: Backroads will provide 20% match on TPS RRSP contributions made during the year, up to a maximum of 15% of a TPSs Backroads salary. Employees become 20% vested each year and are fully vested after five years of employment.
- A Health/Dental Insurance Program: Backroads will reimburse up to $150 CAD per month for provincial medical and/or supplemental medical insurance beginning the first day of the month following the first day of training. TPSs are eligible to receive this reimbursement during months in which they work 10 days or more.
- Holiday Pay: Canadian TPSs receive paid holidays in accordance with Canadian Labour Code.
- Vacation Pay: Canadian TPSs receive vacation pay at the rate of 4% of pay for employees who have been with the company for one to five years, and 6% of pay for employees who have been with the company for more than five years.
- Workers Compensation Coverage: In the unfortunate event of a work-related injury all Canadian Backroads TPSs are covered by a combination of workers compensation insurance and employer paid travel medical plans (when working outside of Canada) which provides coverage for medical care, disability pay and medically necessary transportation costs.
TPSs employed by our French subsidiary enjoy these benefits:
- Medical Benefits: Field Staff under the European hub benefit from either the national health plan from their country of residency, or from the French health plan depending on which country is in charge of their coverage (this will be determined by the country of residence). European health plans usually cover part or the entire cost of the cares, as well as a financial compensation during sick leaves.
- Holiday Pay: Time worked on French holidays is paid time and a half. Time worked on May 1 (Labor Day) is paid double.
- Vacation Pay: Vacation pay for European leaders is paid out at the end of each contract. The amount of vacation pay is equal to 10% of the total gross pay leaders make during the entire duration of their contract. European leaders also qualify for French government approved retirement and unemployment plans covered by Klesia and Pole Emploi.
- Profit Sharing: Every year in May, "801 France" distributes a part of its benefits among its employees. The amount is based on a complex formula established by the French government and, while varying from year to year, it can average between 200€ and 300€.
The Hiring & Training Process
TPS applicants will go through the same application and interview process as Trip Leaders and Camp Crew applicants (see: Hiring & Training Process) We offer three specific Hiring Events for TPS candidates. After the event we'll contact you via email or phone to let you know our decision. If hired, you will be invited to attend the TPS Training Program in Salt Lake City, UT, May 4 - May 13, 2020; Pernes-Les-Fontaines, France April 15 - April 24, 2020; or Canmore, Alberta May 25 - June 4, 2020. You will enter the field one to four weeks after your training graduation.
The training focuses on the essential skills required to be a successful Trip Prep Specialist: problem solving, bike mechanics, equipment set up and overview, trailer maneuvering, internal systems, trip paperwork, etc. After you have completed training you will travel to your region and undergo additional training by "shadowing" an experienced member in the region as well as a first day of a real Backroads trip.
Please note: The cost of travel to Hiring Events and Training is paid by the applicant.
Meet a Few of Our Trip Prep Specialists
We'd like to introduce you to a few of our current TPSs. Read on to hear about their experience as a Backroads TPS.