Planning/GIS Technician (Temporary) in Helena, Montana (Deadline March 22)

Position Title: Planning/GIS Technician (Temporary)

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks works to perpetuate all that it means to hunt, camp, fish, hike, ride, float, play, climb, sit, wander, explore and revel – to venture outside and into this land we call Montana. The outside is in us all. Montana State Parks preserves and protects our state’s cultural, natural, and recreational heritage for the benefit of our families, communities, and local economies. With 55 state parks across Montana, opportunities abound for Montanans and our visitors to go camping, hiking, mountain biking, boating and more. Find us online at

Deadline: This position closes at 11:59 PM MST on March 22, 2017.

Status: Temporary (not to exceed 480 hours)

Salary: $18.50/hour. Temporary positions are not eligible for benefits or paid leave.

Summary: Montana State Parks, a Division of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP), is seeking a temporary Planning/GIS Technician to perform a range of park planning and GIS related duties. This is an excellent opportunity to gain real world, professional experience in the planning field for a recent graduate or new professional.

The ideal candidate will be enthusiastic, ambitious, and solution-oriented who enjoys working in a dynamic environment. The work may vary between fast-paced deadlines and routine tasks, so the ability to be a self-starter with excellent time management and independent work skills is essential. The ideal candidate must also be analytical, detail-oriented, creative, possess a strong work ethic, and have a positive attitude and excellent people skills. The position is based at the Montana FWP headquarters in Helena, MT. While located within Planning, this position is also heavily focused on GIS and graphic design. The work is primarily conducted in an office setting with regular office hours, though on occasion there may be opportunity to travel and support park operations in the field.

Helena is Montana’s best kept secret that is cradled in the Rocky Mountains with access to over 75-miles of world-class hiking and mountain biking trails that originate right from town. There is also endless water recreation on nearby Canyon Ferry, Holter and Hauser Lakes, with blue ribbon fishing on the Missouri River. Helena is located halfway between Glacier and Yellowstone National Parks and is also Montana’s Geocaching Capital.

Schedule and Start Date: This position is a temporary duration position not to exceed 480 hours. This position will be implemented through an employment agency. The candidate is anticipated to begin in mid-May for training and orientation at approximately 20 hours/week that would turn into a maximum 40 hours/week in early-June. Anticipated end time is mid-September. Exact dates and schedule will be determined with the successful candidate. Housing is not provided, but there are a good array of apartment and house rentals available on Craigslist.

Core Functions: Under the guidance of the Chief of Operations and in conjunction with the Senior
Planner, core functions are described as follows:

  • Performs routine tasks in designated program areas, including tracking and preparing monthly visitation reports, tracking commercial use permits, and responding to data requests.
  • A key project for this position will be to complete a series of overview maps for state parks using cartographic standards and a template developed by the Division.
  • Researches, compiles information, and provides technical assistance to staff and the public on a variety of planning issues from multiple sources.
  • Performs other routine office tasks including data entry, file management, copying and answering telephone.
  • Supports other program tasks in conjunction with the Business Manager and Marketing and Communications Manager.
  • Opportunity for occasional travel to state parks to support park staff based on interest.

Essential Knowledge and Skills:

  • Knowledge of planning principles and practices, including recreation resource planning and management
  • Knowledge and experience using ArcGIS 10.1 and beyond, including database management, cartography, spatial analysis
  • Knowledge of principles and practices of research and data collection
  • Oral communication and interpersonal skills and effective writing skills
  • Creative problem-solving skills to gather relevant information to solve vaguely defined practical problems
  • Ability to work on several projects or issues simultaneously
  • Ability to work independently or in a team environment as needed
  • Ability to attend to details while keeping big-picture goals in mind
  • Ability to create graphic designs with Adobe Illustrator is highly desirable
  • Experience with social media platforms

Minimum Qualifications: In addition to demonstrating the ability to meet the core functions, the ideal candidate for the Planning/GIS Technician position will have a bachelor’s degree in planning, GIS, recreation resource management, resource conservation, public policy, social sciences or a related field; or 2 years of relevant experience. Upcoming or recent graduates with professional experience are encouraged to apply.

Required Documents:

  1. Resume
  2. Cover Letter addressing interest and knowledge/skills/ability to satisfy core functions
  3. Work sample: 1-3 completed map products (digital preferred) with a brief description of the project and your role in completion
  4. A minimum of three references with name, relationship (personal or professional reference), job title, phone number, and email

Send completed application package to the following as a single PDF by 11:59 PM MST on March 22, 2017:

Subject: Planning/GIS Technician Application
Maren Murphy, AICP, Senior Planner

For inquiries about the position, please call Ms. Murphy at 406-444-3364.

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