The Human Resources Specialist plays a key role on the HR team as the day-to-day administrator of the employee health and welfare benefit programs as well as managing leaves of absence, communicating staff news, maintaining HRIS records, and assisting the Senior Director of HR & Operations with compliance requirements. As a member of the HR team, the Specialist ensures adherence to all federal and state employment laws and regulations in all activities.
This position plays an important role in supporting an inclusive organizational culture that is grounded in trust and accountability to shared goals and outcomes. TWS has made diversity, equity, and inclusion strategic priorities for the organization and the Human Resources Specialist will integrate these priorities throughout their work by ensuring equity and inclusion are woven into employee benefits and support, onboarding, and other projects they may support. Across our team, we aspire to be campaign oriented, nimble, collaborative, innovative, transparent, and supportive of staff – our greatest asset.
Essential Duties & Responsibilities
- Creates and sustains strong employee relationships by helping employees understand and access the organization’s policies and benefit information and responding to inquiries in a timely manner, regardless of positional authority, geographic location, gender, or race. Reports to the Senior Director of HR & Operations policy-related matters, complaints, and employee relations issues.
- Acts as the day-to-day administrator of the employee health and welfare benefits program, to include but not limited to, medical, dental, vision, life and disability insurance offerings.
- Answers general inquiries regarding benefits from staff and their dependents. Responds to each question in a timely manner, regardless of positional authority, geographic location, gender, or race.
- Serves as the main point of contact for the health and welfare benefit providers and acts as a liaison between the employee and provider to resolve benefit issues. Loops in the Senior Director as needed.
- Under the direction of the Senior Director, plans and executes the annual open enrollment process. Serves as lead on scheduling, staff communications, general staff support, and necessary coordination with the benefit brokers and providers.
- Responsible for monthly health and welfare benefit invoice reconciliation, reviewing for accuracy and submitting to Accounts Payable for payment.
- Manages employee leaves of absence to include state and organizational provided disability, FMLA, DCFMLA, maternity/paternity leave, sabbaticals, etc.
- Reports to the Senior Director details of the requested leave and together determines the employee eligibility under applicable law and/or policy.
- Communicates to the affected employee leave eligibility. Files necessary paperwork with the state, when applicable.
- Tracks time taken under federal, state, and organizational leave programs.
- In coordination with the Finance Department, ensures paid leave is properly recorded and accurately processed in payroll.
- Distributes required state and federal leave notices at time of hire, when an employee becomes eligible, and/or annually, as required by specific regulations.
- Maintains HRIS database and is responsible for data integrity.
- Creates new employee records in HRIS.
- Conducts new employee training on related components of HRIS.
- Updates employee records as needed by processing employee status changes in a timely manner.
- Develops and/or updates documentation and procedures; makes recommendations for process improvements; tests impact of updates.
- Produces scheduled and ad-hoc reports.
- Using data in HRIS, responds to requests for verification of employment.
- Creates and maintains confidential hard copy employee records. Conducts periodic file audits to ensure records are accurately maintained and terminated files are sent to offsite storage on a regular basis.
- In coordination with the Senior Director of HR & Operations, assists in execution of Talent Management tasks, including but not limited to creating and disseminating all staff messages, procedure documentation, tracking, providing systems training, and answering general questions from managers and staff about the process and expectations
- Supports the Director of Recruitment & Hiring with new hire onboarding activities to include coordinating new hire profiles for the staff directory and HR newsletter, preparing HR paperwork, and meeting with new hires on their first day for HR orientation.
- Responsible for creating and communicating as necessary HR-related updates via the HR newsletter. Makes a continual effort to ensure announcements about new hires and departures are equitably communicated, and no one is perceived as having preferential treatment.
- In accordance with federal and/or state law, creates and distributes required notices such as wage theft and exchange notices and files the annual EEO-1 report. Assists the Senior Director with the annual retirement plan audit, fulfilling requests for employee files and reports as needed.
- Stays informed on changes in state and federal workforce regulations and collaborates with the HR team to update organizational policies and procedures to remain compliant.
- Performs administrative tasks in support of the HR team including but not limited to:
- Maintains spreadsheets for tracking various HR functions and initiatives.
- Composes and disseminates offer letters to document staff promotions.
- Communicates with managers and internal departments as needed regarding employee departures.
- Manages the flow of information from managers to HR regarding employee changes and coordinates with the Senior Payroll Manager to process changes in accordance with payroll schedules.
- Other related duties and special projects as assigned.
Experience, Competencies, and Education
- Minimum 2 years of progressively responsible experience in multiple Human Resources functions.
- Experience managing or supporting benefit programs at a medium-size organization.
- Track record working successfully in teams representing a rich mix of talent, backgrounds, and perspectives—across race and gender.
- Experience working collaboratively in a cross-functional environment, building relationships with a commitment to implementing goals in an equitable manner.
- Experience successfully managing a variety of vendor relationships.
- Outstanding written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills. The successful candidate is detail oriented, analytically minded, and has a friendly, service-oriented demeanor.
- Must have an ability to handle sensitive and confidential data and situations.
- Working knowledge and experience with an HRIS system required, preferably ADP Workforce Now.
This job description is intended to convey information essential to understanding the scope of this position and it is not intended to be an exhaustive list of experience, skills, efforts, duties, responsibilities or working conditions associated with the position.
The Wilderness Society offers a competitive salary and benefits package, including: health, dental, vision, life and disability insurance; sick and vacation leave; a sabbatical program; and a retirement plan. TWS is an equal opportunity employer and actively works to ensure fair treatment of our employees and constituents across culture, socioeconomic status, race, marital or family situation, gender, age, ethnicity, religious beliefs, physical ability, veteran status or sexual orientation.
As an organization, we aspire to being inclusive in the work that we do, and in the kind of organization we are. Internally this means working as a team that listens to different points of view, recognizes the contributions of every employee and empowers each employee to bring their whole selves to work every day. Externally this means ensuring that public lands are inclusive and welcoming, so that our shared wildlands can help people and nature to thrive. We are committed to equity throughout our work, which we define as our commitment to realizing the promise of our public lands and ensuring that all can share in their universal benefits.