No wonder Colorado’s a hot market for job seekers! An entire one-third of Outside Magazine’s 2016 list of Best Places to Work in America were companies based here in Colorado!
According to Outside: No one wants to spend the majority of their waking hours slogging through a boring job in a cubicle maze, cemented in place under buzzing fluorescent lights. We’re human beings, not drones. Fortunately, more companies are learning that healthier, happier people make for more creative, more productive workers, and they’re making big adjustments: incorporating nature into the office, offering travel stipends, providing support services like childcare, and, of course, stocking the fridges with beer!
Who could argue with that?
Below are the 34 Colorado companies featured in Outside Magazine’s list of the Best Places to Work. I am proud to say that the majority of these companies are job-posting clients of Andrew Hudson’s Jobs List!
1. Forum Phi (Aspen, Colorado)
Company powder days, quarterly “Forum Fridays,” and potential quarterly cash bonuses have become the norm at this Aspen-based architecture and interior design firm. Employees say mixing mountains and work gives the 25-person company the cutting edge when recruiting new talent. Once every quarter, employees vote on a Friday outdoor venture—hut trips, ski days, and rafting are all on the docket.
2. GroundFloor Media (Denver, Colorado)
Flexibility is the key for workers at this midsize public relations firm in Denver: employees work anytime, anywhere. Headquarters are in a refabricated warehouse downtown, near Coors Field. The offices are sprawled around the central collaborative space that doubles as a wet bar every Thursday when the company’s “beer club” brings in a new brew.
6. TeamSnap (Boulder, Colorado)
Seventy-five percent of the 60-plus-person staff at this tech startup work remotely, and in the past year, management has invested in office equipment for them. The company’s sells time-management software that clubs and organizations use to streamline registration and build rosters for YAFL teams, plus intramural and office leagues. Once a year, the team gets together and hits the mountains of Colorado for an annual teambuilding session over Frisbee or a hike.
10. Pellucid Analytics (Boulder, Colorado)
The founders of Pellucid Analytics aim to turn the nonstop-work reputation of Wall Street investment firms on its head. To do that, they created a software program that’s helping the industry change by helping stockbrokers create data-heavy presentations faster: what used to take eight hours should only take one with their software. Employees do this all in an open-office layout with big windows that face the Flatirons.
14. Charles Cunniffe Architects (Aspen, Colorado)
From the conference room of this architecture firm, clients and the company’s roughly 20 employees can watch the grass green up in spring, leaves turn gold in fall, and snow blanket the slope of Aspen Mountain in winter. It’s a good thing the company has a gear storage area in the building and flextime for powder days and doctor’s appointments.
15. Zen Planner (Denver, Colorado)
Staffers at ZenPlanner are expected to keep their minds active, and management ensures that by facilitating company activities. Last year, for example, the software company sent employees to climb two of Colorado’s 14ers together. The 80-plus employees can work out in the newly remodeled office gym that hosts yoga, CrossFit, Zumba, and mediation classes throughout the week.
21. Cloud 9 Living (Broomfield, Colorado)
In the past year, this sales company that sells “experience gifts” implemented a paid-time-off volunteer program in which employees get two days a year to maintain trails, teach kids to read, or help out at the charity of their choice. Employees also receive quarterly “Experience Days,” when they get time off to ski, whitewater raft, or hit the ATV track.
25. Avid4 Adventure (Boulder, Colorado)
Employees at Avid4Adventure design and operate summer camps for kids in Colorado and California. Employees received new benefits this past year, including adoption assistance, lenience and support for workers traveling home for family emergencies, and help with the kennel fee when employees travel without their dogs.
27. Room 214 (Boulder, Colorado)
Dogs roam the office at this ad agency, and the sound of the pinball machine can be heard inside this social media and digital marketing firm’s headquarters. But the company doesn’t like to keep its 32 employees cooped up at their desks. They have “forced fun” events during the workday that usually involve beer, a movie, or a board game.
28. Apto (Denver, Colorado)
The founder of Apto set out to design an efficient way to streamline the commercial real estate business. The company uses cloud-based software designed to make it easier to list and sell properties. The company has grown to 60 employees since its launch in 2012. Perks include stock options and weekly happy hours.
31. RA Nelson (Vail, Colorado)
This construction company builds multimillion-dollar homes, affordable housing units, local parks, and high-alpine gardens in Colorado. Its 80 employees celebrate the end of each stage of construction with barbecues. The company also sponsors a local mountain bike team.
35. Sterling-Rice Group (Boulder, Colorado)
This advertising and public relations company has a dedicated nap room and a spa room that features weekly massages. Headquarters are in the center of downtown Boulder and a 15-minute bike ride to the mountains. Groups of the company’s 111 employees are known to enjoy post-summit beers together.
36. TDA Boulder (Boulder, Colorado)
In the past year, this ad agency started a program where employees are encouraged to climb a Colorado 14er, snap a picture on the summit, and bring back the photo evidence. If they do, the company will donate $1,000 to a charity of their choice. TDA also helps fund personal and professional development stipends for yoga teacher certification, Spanish 201, or advanced Adobe Illustrator training.
39. BSW Wealth Partners (Boulder, Colorado)
This financial group help clients save and grow wealth. Employees are mentored toward reaching their personal goals, whether that’s climbing a mountain, skiing down one, or saving a certain sum. The snack cabinet is stocked, and winter means ski days. Employees also get paid time off for volunteer service, a chance for partial ownership in the company, and time for weekly meditation.
44. StoneAge (Durango, Colorado)
This engineering and manufacturing company offers an employee stock ownership plan, which means hard work is rewarded with equity. Workers also enjoy full health benefits, cash profit-sharing bonuses, and a robust wellness program.
46. Bluetent (Carbondale, Colorado)
This Colorado-based digital marketing agency has attracted talented employees from Silicon Valley and keeps them around by offering a flexible schedule and maintaining a strict 40-hour workweek limit. The office is 20 minutes from four ski areas, and workers can mountain bike or fish at lunch. The company hosts a “Great Work” lunch once a month, where peers nominate their co-workers for a $100 prize.
47. Adaptive Sports Center (Crested Butte, Colorado)
This nonprofit mountain sports rehabilitation company tries to improve the quality of life for people with disabilities by enabling them to enjoy outdoor adventures. The company’s 15 full-time workers are treated to powder days and mountain biking days. The organization’s roughly 100 wintertime volunteers receive season passes and lockers at the local mountain if they volunteer one day a week during ski season.
52. SummitCove (Keystone, Colorado)
Frustrated with the lack of prospects of finding a condo in the Colorado Rockies, the owners of SummitCove built their own property managing company and have become the largest independent group in Keystone Ski Resort. During peak season, its 75 employees (average age around 30) take weekend trips climbing, biking, and skiing around Lake Dillon. The company pays for English and Spanish lessons, believing that a bilingual team offers better services overall.
56. New Belgium Brewing (Fort Collins, Colorado)
The 800 employees at this craft beer maker all have stakes in the company, not to mention access to an on-site gym, bike track, and foosball and ping-pong tables. One year on the job earns each staffer a new cruiser bike; five years means a free flight to Belgium; after ten years, each worker receives a paid sabbatical. Oh, and everyone gets a free beer every day and a 12-pack each week.
57. Namaste Solar (Boulder, Colorado)
More than half of the 155 employees at Namaste, which installs residential and commercial solar power systems, receive stock options and paid time off to volunteer. The employee-owned cooperative donates 10 percent of profits to local charities.
59. Peaksware (Boulder, Colorado)
Peaksware makes software to help people learn musical instruments and train for marathons, among other goals. Its 350 employees have access to an on-site gym and recording studio and receive a $1,200 annual stipend for fitness-related costs. The company also organizes food-truck lunches, concert raffles, cookouts, and beer Fridays.
62. VictorOps (Boulder, Colorado)
Boulder-based VictorOps says its incident management notification software “makes on-call suck less” for its growing customer base. The office’s 50 employees have access to a rooftop barbecue area, shuffleboard table, and a kegerator that alerts the staff when the beer supply runs low. The boss’ love for quadcopters ignited a competition to fly chicken wings out from the nearby sports bar to the office’s outdoor patio.
68. Brewers Association (Boulder, Colorado)
The Boulder-based Brewers Association is a national nonprofit representing 4,800 small and independent craft breweries across the United States. More than 60 employees participate together in marathon relays, compete in the annual Brewing Olympics at the nearby reservoir, and have their choice of three beers on tap in the office bar.
70. Arapahoe Basin Ski Area (Summit County, Colorado)
Arapahoe Basin Ski Area, located on the Continental Divide in Colorado, prides itself on having the longest ski season in North America with more than 350 inches of snowfall between October and June. At peak season, the alpine ski area employs 450 people who enjoy yoga sessions and free skiing at most resorts across the state.
73. Crestone (Boulder, Colorado)
Execs at Crestone pride themselves on having $1.6 billion in assets under management to help entrepreneurs and business owners find investment opportunities. The company’s 36 employees have an in-house view of the Flatirons and the luxury of taking mountain bike rides with clients.
77. Big Agnes (Steamboat Springs, Colorado)
This outdoor gear maker, best known for its tents, enforces a “powder clause” that allows its 62 staffers to ski until 11 a.m. when it snows during the workweek. Employees get discounts on gear and reimbursement for wellness items, including ski passes and rec center memberships.
80. Ryan Solutions (Edwards, Colorado)
Ryan Solutions has 24 employees who handle database marketing and customer relationship management services for more than 130 ski resorts and beach, golf, and hotel destinations. The firm’s M.O. is to work hard, then get out the door to ski Vail or Beaver Creek on powder days, fly-cast for rainbow trout on the Eagle River, and hit the mountain bike trails.
82. Access Fund (Boulder, Colorado)
The 18 employees of the Access Fund are focused on protecting America’s outdoor climbing areas via policy initiatives, land acquisition, and education. Staffers are allowed to bring dogs to the office and get free memberships to indoor climbing gyms. They’re also encouraged to go for a quick drive to climb the mouth of Boulder Canyon.
83. Mondo Robot (Boulder, Colorado)
Mondo Robot, a creative digital agency based in Boulder, builds websites for major brands, including Whistler Blackcomb, Comcast, and the Michael J. Fox Foundation. Its 36 employees play ping-pong, pinball, and mini-golf in the office while exploring virtual reality and augmented reality possibilities for the growing customer base. The agency seeks to hire additional designers with this clever posting for open positions: “We rock websites, games, strategy, bikes, motion, tequila, video, code, logos, tacos, mobile, music, new identities, IPAs, and sweet Colorado pow.”
86. Tendril (Boulder, Colorado)
Tendril develops cloud-based software to help customers manage their utilities and energy use. Its 134 employees hold meetings on Boulder Peak and kick back at 3:30 p.m. for daily beers at the fully stocked office bar. Staffers also receive unlimited paid time off—some employees recently took advantage of that perk to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.
88. Sphero (Boulder, Colorado)
Sphero is a robotics and digital technology developer that offers its 180 employees flexible work hours and awards them for creative thinking. Offices in Boulder and Hong Kong are packed with Star Wars toys, Xbox stations, and Nerf guns.
93. Cloud Elements (Denver, Colorado)
Cloud Elements is an API integration platform that helps make sure companies’ apps are utilizing the full potential of the cloud. Set near the Platte River Bike Trail, the firm’s 60 employees receive paid time off each month to ski, plus unlimited vacation time. The company has a unanimous hiring process in which anyone can veto a hire.
97. FullContact (Denver, Colorado)
FullContact uses apps and APIs to keep contacts in-sync, up to date, and safe. The company’s 200-plus employees worldwide have adopted an outdoor culture of cycling, hiking, and skiing. To encourage off-the-grid time away from the office, the company gives staffers three weeks of paid vacation plus an annual $7,500 pretax stipend to take a one-week trip of their choosing.
99. Verde Brand Communications (Boulder, Colorado)
This public relations company founded by a former journalist services the outdoor, action sports, and health and wellness markets. Its 31 employees get paid to volunteer and are allowed to work remotely so they can spend more time with their families.