This is a very exciting time to be applying for an Animal Attendant job at Caversham Wildlife Park! We are re-building our crew as we recover from the pandemic, so now is a great opportunity to become a part of the team!
We are regularly hiring throughout 2023. Applications will be kept on-file and reviewed as positions arise.
Being a keeper isn't just playing with cute fluffy animals all day!! We work in the rain and when it's so cold we can barely feel our fingers! We work in the scorching summer heat and humidity. We work when our friends are enjoying their weekends! Why? Because we love what we do and we are passionate about working with animals! And animals don't know what day of the week it is, and they still need feeding on Christmas Day!
Many of our friends have little understanding of what we do! And that's because it's a pretty tricky job to explain to an outsider. They know all about the super cool stuff (because we brag about it!!) but they don't see how hard we work, how dirty we get, and how heartbroken we are when one of our beloved animals crosses the rainbow bridge. Our job is physical, mental and emotional. And we love it!!
This is a job you do only because you love it! It involves anti-social work hours, and the pay isn't that good! So if you have no experience in this field, and you're unsure if its right for you, we would strongly encourage you to volunteer first to 'try it out'. There is an abundance of awesome volunteering opportunities in this field; whether it be right here at Caversham Wildlife Park, or at one of the many excellent wildlife rehabilitation centres. How great is it, that this is an industry you can literally 'try before you buy'!!
So, if we haven't put you off yet, let us try to explain to you what our job involves:
With a major focus on customer service, we are committed to assisting our visitors to ensure their visit is as enjoyable as possible. We facilitate interactive attractions, display animals, present talks and conduct guided tours. And we do all of this with unwavering enthusiasm (our passion is hard to hide!) and professionalism. We love to inform and educate visitors of all ages, so it can be hard to keep us quiet! New staff are provided with species information - there is a lot to learn, so we hope you like reading!
We are proud of our customer-focused culture and expect new staff to adopt this attitude immediately - in fact, at interview stage, it is easy to see who already has the right attitude to quality customer-care!
We also supervise visitors within interactive areas to ensure the safety of our animals and the visitors; we take a preventative approach to supervision, so we are required to be assertive and proactive.
We are committed to providing the highest standard of quality care to our animals, and we take our responsibility for maintaining their health and welfare seriously. This part of the job is simply too extensive to explain in a quick blurb, so just trust us that comprehensive training is provided! But also keep in mind that as a new staff member, hands-on animal care would only make up a few hours of your day.
We put a lot of effort into ensuring the park is clean, tidy, well-presented and safe. Naturally we clean the animal's enclosures and exhibits, but we also clean windows, pick up rubbish, empty rubbish bins, wash dishes and clean toilets. We weed, rake pathways, mulch garden beds, 'blow' picnic areas. We even vacuum the grass! And......don't forget poop patrol!! If you don't already know how to sweep, mop, wipe, scrub, hose, rake, weed, change a bin-bag and use a blower-vac, you sure will after working with us! And if you don't like the idea of picking up someone's cigarette butt or baby wipe, this isn't the job for you!
Flexible availability is a must; being available to work on weekdays, weekends, public holidays and school holidays. All staff are required to be available to work regular weekends and must be available both Saturdays and Sundays.
Full-time staff work 5 days per week on a rotating roster. Part-time staff work 2-4 days per week (set rosters are considered only for tertiary students).
The shift times are currently 8.00am to 4.30pm and 8.15am to 4.45pm.
We are expected to be available to work holiday periods, such as Christmas, New Year, Australia Day, Easter and public holidays - these are our busiest times, so it's 'all hands on deck'.
So, what are we looking for?
- Experience working in a tourist attraction or similar is highly regarded
- Experience working as a Tour Guide is highly regarded
- Experience working with native wildlife is highly regarded (for example, paid or unpaid experience in a wildlife rescue/rehabilitation organisation)
- Experience working with animals is desirable (for example, paid or unpaid experience working as a kennel hand, stable hand, dog groomer, dog trainer, animal breeder, etc)
Qualifications with native wildlife, tourism, tour guiding or similar are highly regarded
Customer Service Attributes
- Demonstrate an understanding of superior customer service
- A people-person who enjoys interacting with the public
- Comfortable with public speaking
- Have an ability to build a rapport quickly
- Have a personality to suit our tourist-attraction culture
- Cultural awareness and sensitivity
- Confidence, self-assured, composure and assertiveness
- Diplomacy, tact and discretion
- A charismatic team player with a willingness to get involved
- A “can do” attitude with a drive to achieve excellence
- Enjoy the “hustle and bustle” of a busy workplace
- Professionalism, integrity and a strong work ethic
- Dedication to effective workplace health and safety
- Self-motivated, teach-ability and enthusiasm to learn
- Versatile work style
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
Other Pre-requisites and Conditions to be mindful of:
- Be in good health, and be physically fit and active, as the position requires you to work on your feet for most of the day and perform some manual labour duties
- Willingness to work in all weather conditions, and be prepared to get wet, muddy, dirty and sweaty (and even wee'd and pooped on!)
- Uniform provided
- Have a reliable way of getting to and from work (public transport is not suitable)
- Possession of a valid, manual driver’s license is desirable (but not essential)
- Be prepared to have, or provide documentation of, a valid Tetanus Vaccination
- Be prepared to provide an up-to-date Police Clearance
- Be prepared to provide a minimum of 2 professional verbal references, that are from within the last 3 years
- Positions are permanent; long-term applicants considered only
- 6 month probationary period