NOR Operator
Job Details
Full Time
$28.21 - $28.21 Hourly

Recompose is an ecological death care company offering the service of natural organic reduction (NOR), where human bodies are converted into soil. The Recompose model offers an authentic, participatory experience for families and a natural return to the earth for the dead. Our first location the Greenhouse opened in December 2020 in Kent, WA.

Recompose is seeking a full-time NOR Operator to support operations at the Greenhouse and later at our headquarters, which is scheduled to open in South Seattle around May. Our Kent facility will shut down shortly after our Seattle facility opens, and then all NOR activity will be at the Seattle location.

This person will have a comfort around machinery, an interest in creating cleanliness and order, and an appreciation for the natural cycles, sustainability, gardening, and/or permaculture. The position will focus on operations, helping us transform bodies into soil, perform general maintenance and help create a safe, productive work environment.

Recompose is transforming the funeral industry and creating deep ecological change. We are looking to hire people who are passionate about creating a radical new death care paradigm and helping to heal the environment through this work.


Operate Recompose equipment:

  • Assist in facilitating the safe and successful conversion of bodies into soil daily.
  • Operate the Recompose vessel system and ancillary equipment.
  • Operate scissor lifts and forklifts daily.
  • Take required measurements and record them in computerized system daily.
  • Follow all safety protocols, including our COVID-19 protocols, and suggest new ones if appropriate.
  • Notice when equipment is not working correctly and report abnormalities to maintenance personnel.
  • Under supervision, make adjustments and/or minor repairs.

Assist with management of materials/flow of work:

  • With the NOR Team, manage the flow and storage of all materials related to the NOR process (e.g. wood chips, straw, alfalfa.)
  • With the NOR Team, screen soil for non-organics and recycle non-organics.
  • Daily help with coordinating workflow and prioritizing tasks.
  • Assist in tracking of the chain of custody of each body in our care for legal compliance.

Keep facility clean and well-organized:

  • Help maintain a clean and well-organized facility, appropriate for visiting families to view.
  • Clean and supply designated building areas.
  • Daily Sweeping of large areas.
  • Carry out heavy cleansing tasks and special projects for NOR Equipment.

Participate in training:

  • Complete OSHA and other training necessary to carry out the work in a safe and ethical manner.
  • Collaborate with the NOR Manager to assist in the final stages of training new hires.


  • For the safety of all, our company policies require full Covid-19 vaccination for all employees.
  • Background with a significant amount of physical labor.
  • Demonstrated emotional maturity required for the handling of human remains in various stages of decomposition.
  • Comfort with basic tools and/or machinery.
  • Ability to self-start.
  • Comfort with working at height (scissor lifts up to 15).
  • Ability to work around occasional loud sounds, smells, and dust (note that earplugs/earmuffs, masks or respirators may be required occasionally for safety, depending on such circumstances).
  • Existing forklift operator certification(s), or ability to obtain required certifications. Recompose will pay for training associated with such certifications.
  • Some comfort with phone and computer applications is necessary for recording of NOR data and ones own hours onsite.
  • A strong respect for the unexplained, a willingness to not know and an inquisitive approach to the work.
  • Flexibility in terms of approaches and duties as the Recompose team is very small and helping each other accomplish a variety of tasks is a necessity.
  • Resilience, including the ability to manage own emotions, demonstrate self-control under pressure or adversity, and practice self-care.
  • Good transportation: while a vehicle is not required, and alternative means of transportation are celebrated, the site in South Seattle does not have good access to public transit.
  • Commitment to working toward and advocating for climate healing, soil health, and environmental justice.
  • Commitment to working at a progressive company that explicitly works to be anti-racist. Recompose is committed to advocating and protecting the rights of people of color, religious minorities, and undocumented people.
  • Commitment to working at a progressive company that explicitly works to be feminist. Recompose is committed to advocating and protecting the rights of women, transgender people, and gender nonconforming people
  • This is a bargaining unit position, which means this position will be represented by a union, Local 89 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.



This position will report onsite to our Kent or Seattle location. The Kent facility is temporary and will be shutting down mid to late 2022. Once this facility is closed, all work will be done at the Seattle headquarters location.


Work is done inside a warehouse, and can tend to be hot or cold, depending on the ambient temperature. Work can involve dust, smells, and loud noises, any of which can require the use of appropriate personal protective equipment such as earplugs, masks, or respirators, all of which are provided by Recompose.


While still operating at the Kent facility, there is no inside breakroom, and most breaks are taken outside or in a vehicle.


Work is very physical in nature, requiring bending, twisting, lifting, and carrying. NOR Operators must be able to lift and carry 50 pounds for short periods, or lighter loads for longer. NOR Operators should be able to be on their feet for much of the day.


Work Culture

The Recompose NOR team works closely together and is seeking to cultivate and grow a positive, warm, enjoyable workplace culture. It is common for team members to lean on each other for support as this work can be quite difficult on many levels. A willingness to listen, be adaptable and sensitive to the needs of other team members is an important aspect to this position. Recompose strives to nourish a culture of inclusion where authenticity and individuality are celebrated.


Starting Salary

$28.21 per hour

Benefit Information

  • Comprehensive medical, dental and vision insurance plans
  • Generous paid time off
  • Wellness and technology stipends


Our goal as an employer is to have a feminist, antiracist culture, and to employ a diverse, inclusive workforce that is representative of all people we do or might serve. As such, we do not discriminate on any protected status, and moreover, we celebrate applications from persons of color, persons of all genders and gender expressions, persons of any sexual orientation, the formerly incarcerated, and persons in of any other protected class, such as religion, disability, marital status, veteran status, national origin, pregnancy status, or genetic status. Please feel free to let us know in your application if you fit into any such category/ies, or if you need a reasonable accommodation to apply.