Employee News - August 21, 2019


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Using People Roundings to build a better workplace 

By Whitney Abrams, Chief People Officer

Two years ago, Executive Constantine launched our Investing in YOU strategy to build a supportive and respectful workplace culture at King County where every employee can be at their best and do their best work for our community. 

One way that I track our progress on this strategy is through a process called People Roundings. Rounding is what doctors and nurses have traditionally done to check on patients in hospitals. We use People Roundings to check in with leaders and staff in departments on our People Measures, the key metrics we use to measure our progress on Investing in YOU. 

Roundings also give me an opportunity to learn about the exciting work that is happening in your departments, and find out what additional resources and support I can provide to ensure we are building a healthy and supportive culture in every department. Read more.

Employee Spotlights

DPD interns: A summer of epic victories, hard-fought losses and many hours in the courtroom 

The Department of Public Defense is saying goodbye this week and next to its 20 interns, thoughtful and dedicated law students who experienced both epic trial victories and hard-fought losses during their 10 weeks at DPD. 

They worked in nearly every case area DPD handles; put forward excellent release arguments, writs, and motions; researched complex legal issues, and wrote thoughtful legal memos. They spent time together at trainings, shared lunches where they heard from others in the field of public defense, and were mentored by several excellent attorneys. 

In interviews with a handful of them during their last few days at the department, they talked about what these 10 weeks have meant to them – what they enjoyed, what was hard, and their thoughts about the legal system as they approach their final year of law school. Here are a few highlights. Read more.



Employees connect with community at Cine en el Parque 

King County employees were on hand to connect with residents about programs and services at the August 10 Cine en el Parque event. 

Community outreach teams from several departments did a great job of providing information at interactive booths with bilingual staff at the screening of Spider-Man: Un Nuevo Universo. “Cine en el Parque” is a free outdoor movie at Dick Thurnau Park in White Center, where movies are projected onto a 40-foot-tall inflatable movie screen (bigger than most indoor theatres) that turns the Park into a spectacular outdoor cinema under the stars.  

It was a great opportunity to share information, spend time with the community, and enjoy the film. 



Green infrastructure, aiming for LEED Gold Certification 

The recent installation of the rain garden and green roof are the latest milestones at the Children and Family Justice Center. The eco-friendly design and landscaping support the County’s climate change priorities.  

In addition to being beautiful, the rain garden is one of many sustainable features that will retain run-off stormwater. The garden’s landscape showcases Princeton Sentry trees, Barrenwort plants, and Mexican beach cobble stones around the perimeter of the garden. A unique characteristic to the garden are rain chains, a functional and modern alternative to traditional gutter downspouts. Visitors and staff will have viewing access from the atrium on all floors of the building.  

The green roof will help conserve energy by acting as a natural coolant for the building, while simultaneously improving stormwater management.   

These, and other energy-efficient features, will contribute to the CFJC using 26 percent less energy than required by the City of Seattle’s Energy Code.   

The project sets high standards for environmental sustainability, and the building is on track to earn Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification.   


Fluid Life Events: Changing your benefits after marriage or divorce 

Certain life events may impact your benefits and allow you to make changes mid-year. This week, the Business Resource Center and the Benefits office launched a new PeopleSoft feature, Fluid Life Events, that allows you to make benefit changes online from any mobile device or computer. You can make changes online to your medical, dental, vision, life, and AD&D coverage if you experience one of the following life events: marriage, divorce, birth, or adoption. 

You can still submit paper Qualifying Life Event forms and documentation to the Benefits office if you prefer; these forms can also be used for life events not yet available in PeopleSoft. 

  • Marriage is considered a qualifying life event, which allows you to make changes to your benefits mid-year. You and your new spouse should evaluate your benefit options to be sure your coverage makes sense for your new family. Make any benefits changes within 30 days of your marriage. For detailed step-by-step instructions, see Changing Benefits in PeopleSoft: Marriage. 
  • Divorce is also a qualifying life event, which allows you to make changes to your benefits mid-year. Make any benefits changes within 30 days of your divorce. For detailed step-by-step instructions, see Changing Benefits in PeopleSoft: Divorce. 

Information about the Birth and Adoption life events will be covered in the next Employee News. 

Questions? To help the Business Resource Center continue to deliver excellent service, please use the PeopleSoft Life Events Employee Feedback Tool. If you have questions about your benefits, contact Benefits, Payroll and Retirement Operations at 206-684-1556 or KC Benefits. 

mob frame

How can Metro meet the needs of our growing county and help solve the climate crisis? We need to hear from you! 

King County is growing quickly. Our economy is doing well, but unfortunately, rising housing prices mean that many people must live farther from work and drive long distances. That’s not good for quality of life, and it’s not good for the environment – transportation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in King County. At the same time, innovations in mobility services mean there are many more ways to get around than ever before, but many of these services can be expensive and lead to more cars on the road and more pollution in the air. 

King County Metro needs your help to address these challenges. 

We are the largest transit provider in King County, but we know we must do more. Read more.

food trucks

City Hall Park lunch options 

Check out the food trucks at City Hall Park on the south side of the King County Courthouse this week from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Today and Thursday it’s Plaza Garcia Express Mexican cuisine, and on Friday it’s World’s Best BBQClick here for a complete schedule and menus of food trucks at City Hall Park. For more information visit www.seattlefoodtruck.com

Now recruiting 2019 Ambassadors! 

Build your resume AND make a difference? Yes, you can have it all. 

Ambassadors are the most important element of our Employee Giving Program team.  You will be the key to making sure that every King County employee has a quality opportunity to support a cause they care about through the program. Register Here 

You get to: 

  • Meet new people, 
  • Advocate for your favorite cause, and 
  • Build rock star skills. 

Read more and learn about being an Ambassador in the video below. 

ambassador video

Employee Discounts to 2019 Washington State Fair and University of Washington football

Washington State Fair: Employees can save on tickets to the Washington State Fair, Aug. 30 – Sept. 22. Click here for instructions on how to purchase your discount tickets. Once you are logged into the Corporate Perks portal, your discount pricing will be unlocked. There is no need to enter an additional discount code. 

University of Washington football: UW vs. Eastern Washington University, Saturday Aug. 31, and UW vs. USC, Saturday, Sept. 28. To access the discount, visit this link here. Questions? Contact Justin Rothbaum at 206-685-8429 or jrothbaum@pac-12sales.com.

See all available employee discounts at www.kingcounty.gov/employeediscounts. 

Training Spotlight: La Cultura Cura Philosophy Overview 

La Cultura Cura Philosophy Overview, Sept. 17: The National Compadres Network in partnership with King County’s Office of Equity and Social Justice presents La Cultura Cura Philisophy Overview: A Training on the National Compadres Network Healing Informed Philosophy and Framework with Jerry Tello. La Cultura Cura is a transformative health, learning, justice, and healing philosophy that recognizes that within individuals’, families’ and communities’ authentic cultural values, traditions and indigenous practices exist the path to healthy development, restoration and lifelong well-being. Register and learn more. 

View more training and development opportunities at www.kingcounty.gov/learning. 


Pet of the Week: Ginger 

Look at that sweet smile – it’s Ginger, our Pet of the Week! 

This senior Labrador/Shepherd mix is looking for her forever home. Her personality color is “Easy Going Green,” meaning she is an adaptable dog who loves to go with the flow! 

Ginger is a sweet girl, very affectionate, and would be thrilled to cuddle up with you at home. She loves going on walks and hanging out with her favorite people. Ginger came into the shelter with another dog, but she may be selective about which dogs she gets along with and she may do best in a home with no other dogs or need to meet other dogs in the home first. Ginger has flea allergy dermatitis, so she will do best with regular flea treatments and visits to the veterinarian. Read more.

Featured Job: Business and Finance Officer IV - Budget (Internal Only) 

Salary: $94,937.02 - $120,338.60 Annually 

Location: Seattle, WA 

Job Type: Career Service, Full Time, 40 hrs/week 

Department: DLS - Local Services 

Job Number: 2019RH10423 

Closing: 8/21/2019 11:59 PM Pacific 

Are you an experienced public sector budget analyst seeking your next challenge? Come join the Roads Services Division of King County's Department of Local Services as a Business and Finance Officer IV!   Successful candidates will have the skills needed to develop and monitor the Road Division's biennial capital and operating budgets, as well as the Capital Improvement Program's Six Year Plan and demonstrated ability to operate in a role with heavy quantitative emphasis that also supervises two professional staff members. This position will be part of the Roads Budget and Finance Unit, within the Strategic Business Operations Section, and reports to the Roads Finance Manager. 

Learn more about this position or view all available positions. 

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