Employee News - November 3, 2020

A service of the King County Department of Human Resources

King County Employee News




Make the most of your King County benefits 

Open Enrollment for next year's benefits is Nov. 1-15, so now is the time to review your benefit options for 2021.  

Make sure you get the most out of your robust King County employee benefits package by learning what’s offered during Open Enrollment and how you can make changes: 

  • Check out the new online enrollment tool: This year, we’re using an updated PeopleSoft tool featuring a new look and feel and a mobile-friendly interface – making it easier for you to complete Open Enrollment using a smartphone or tablet. For details and step-by-step instructions, watch the video Completing Open Enrollment with PeopleSoft or read the Open Enrollment PeopleSoft Guide. 
  • Attend a virtual information session: Get a good understanding of your 2021 benefit changes, learn more about the updated Open Enrollment tool, and get your questions answered at live information sessions hosted by the Benefits Team. This event is offered on a variety of days and times to accommodate your schedule. Register here: Open Enrollment information session. 
  • Watch an Open Enrollment overview video: If you can’t attend an information session, the Open Enrollment Overview video covers similar information. 
  • Go to the Open Enrollment website: A wealth of information and tools, including 2021 benefit changes, medical plan comparisons, and information about Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and Benefit Access Fees, can be found at Kingcounty.gov/Open-Enrollment 
  • Complete Open Enrollment Nov. 1–15: You can log in to PeopleSoft from your work computer or personal device: kingcounty.gov/mybenefits. If you choose not to participate, you will not be enrolled in FSAs for next year; and if you cover a spouse/domestic partner, the Benefit Access Fee linked to your medical plan will be applied. Other benefits will remain the same. 

For additional information, contact the King County Benefits Team at 206-684-1556 or by email aKC.Benefits@kingcounty.gov. 


Make your voice heard and vote today 

Don't forget to vote if you haven't returned your ballot already. Registered voters can return their ballot: 

  • At a ballot drop box. Find your nearest ballot drop box—no stamp needed! King County’s 73 drop boxes are open up until Nov. 3 at 8 p.m. sharp. 
  • At one of the accessible Vote CentersThis year there will be seven locations: Elections Headquarters in Renton, CenturyLink Field Event Center, the Dempsey Indoor Center on the UW Campus in Seattle, Bellevue College, Showare Center in Kent, the Federal Way Performing Arts Center and Kenmore City Hall. 

For more information, visit www.kingcounty.gov/elections contact King County Elections at 206-296-VOTE (8683), or visit the Election Connection blog. 



Tips and resources for coping with election stress 

Today is Election Day and many Americans are waiting anxiously for the results. According to a recent survey by the American Psychological Association (APA), more than two-thirds of U.S. adults say the 2020 U.S. presidential election is a significant source of stress in their life. And those feelings are being experienced throughout the King County workforce, as well. A recent survey of employees involved in the COVID-19 response showed that the presidential election is their primary source of stress. 

Election stress will show up in different ways for different people. Some examples include panic attacks, trouble sleeping, difficultly concentrating, anger, sadness, headaches, or stomachaches. Election stress may also cause us to participate in behaviors such as over-eating, mindless internet scrolling, significantly increasing news consumption, or watching more TV than normal in order to “numb out” from difficult feelings. 

Be gentle with yourself if these feelings or behaviors arise. 2020 has been the year of a pandemic, a racial justice uprising, wildfires, and economic struggles. Experiencing difficult emotions or adjusting your behaviors in order to cope is normal during hard times.  

Take comfort in the value of your work – the services you provide are important for the people of King County and this work will continue, regardless of the election result. 

Visit this Balanced You blogpost for tips and resources to help you reduce election stress. 

King County e-procurement is live 

King County's new e-procurement system is now live, and will streamline the procurement process and enhance engagement with suppliers. Procurement and Payables (P&P) is dedicated to supporting each employee as they learn the new system. Here are a few of the resources prepared: 

  • To assist agency staff, the agency website has been enhanced to provide details and answer questions. For help, please visit the agency website to collect more information and find user guides to assist with the new system. Questions can also be emailed to Procurement.Web@kingcounty.gov  
  • In preparation to support the supplier community, P&P has created a supplier specific landing page designed to answer all questions. If a supplier reaches out for assistance, direct them to the supplier website and highlight the supplier resources on the website. 

Safety in the workplace – tailgating 

This is a reminder a reminder to be vigilant in the workplace regarding your surroundings and people in the vicinity of your workplace. Recently, there have been increased incidents of ‘tailgating’ in county buildings. 

What is tailgating? Tailgating is one of the most common security breaches. It starts out innocently, an employee opening a door and holding it open for others, visitors without badges, or the passive acceptance of a worker. 

The problem with these situations is that they open your building to unauthorized entry by individuals who could intend to harm building occupants or steal items from the workplace including your personal items. 

  • Tailgating management depends on employee awareness and security awareness. 
  • Employees who become aware of visitors on their floors, in lobby spaces, etc., should ask if they have been helped yet, if they need directions or help finding someone. 
  • These simple measures help to foster a safe, open, inviting environment, by letting people know that you are aware that they are in the building. This shows good customer service and fosters a safety culture. 

If you notice anything concerning or see a person that should not be in your work space, contact FMD Security at 206-296-5000 immediately. In an emergency or you feel as if you are in imminent danger, call 911. 

For any questions or concerns, please contact FMD Customer Care Services Team at CustomerCareServices.FMD@kingcounty.gov or 206-477-9400.

Supporting children and youth through the 2020 Annual Giving Drive  

This week, we are highlighting nonprofits whose work supports children and youth. These and hundreds of nonprofits are participating in this year’s Annual Giving Drive. 

  • Children’s Home Society of Washington (9244): A voice for children since 1896, we stand as the premier service provider to ensure the safety, security and success of Washington state's children. 
  • Children’s Hunger Fund (2871): Our mission is to deliver hope to suffering children by equipping local churches for gospel-centered mercy ministry. 
  • Children’s Institute for Learning Differences (9280): Once-failing students learn to regulate themselves, develop relationships, and be learners with CHILD’s life-changing interventions, so they achieve success at school and in life. 

Find out the many ways that you can take action in support of the participating nonprofits who are doing great work in our community and around the world. Make a donation, make a difference, and help make a long-lasting change. Read more.  

Celebrating Day of the Dead during COVID-19 

Day of the Dead is a two-day pre-Hispanic tradition where we celebrate the memory of loved ones who have passed away. On this occasion, families, friends, and communities gather to “bring back the heart,” and honor the departed. Typically, Day of the Dead involves setting up alters and offerings, making food, and enjoying festivities with loved ones. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the celebrations will continue even if they look different. 

In the video below, three King County employees share how they will be safely celebrating Day of the Dead with their families during this pandemic to protect the community. The video has English captions. Read more.  

day of the dead


Making Life Easier resources for supporting well-being through the election season 

Making Life Easier (MLE) has developed resource guides for supporting well-being during this election season. To access them, login to www.KCMakingLifeEasier.com with username: King County, click on Navigate 2020 from the main menu, and select Election Season. 

  • Supporting Your Well-Being This Election Season In this guide, you will find common emotions and responses that may be experienced in this season, self-care strategies; tips for coping with stress, anxiety, and uncertainty, considerations for communicating with your co-workers, and how your MLE services can support you and your family in these times. 
  • How Managers & HR Can Support Well-Being This Election Season In this guide, you will find considerations in preparing proactively for the election season, common emotional and behavioral reactions, self-care strategies; tips for coping with stress, anxiety, and uncertainty, considerations for communicating with employees, and how your MLE services can support managers and employees during these times 

Additionally, MLE also offers an on-demand webinar focused on well-being and health this election season, titled Managing Uncertainty and Anxiety. To view the webinar, register here. To learn more about this webinar and to access others, visit
www.KCMakingLifeEasier.com, login with username: King County, and click on the Current Featured Webinars banner on the home page. 

For more information about the Making Life Easier program, visit www.kingcounty.gov/MLE. 

Creating Effective Application Materials online workshop, November 17 and December 14 

This two-hour virtual workshop will provide you tips and strategies on how to make your application materials stand out.  Learning objectives include: 

  • Understanding the purpose of the job application, resume, cover letter and supplemental questions and how to make each of them more effective 
  • Deciding what to include in your resume and the best format to showcase your qualifications 
  • How to write a cover letter tailored to the specific position 
  • Identifying and showcasing your accomplishments 

This workshop will take place Tuesday, Nov. 17 from 1-3 p.m. and Monday, Dec. 14 from 1-3 p.m. Register here. 

For additional online workshops offered by King County Career Support Services (CSS), visit their Eventbrite page. For more information about CSS visit www.kingcounty.gov/CSS. 

Training Spotlight for November 3 

  • Brain-based Time Management – Online – What we do and how we do it are driven by how our brains are wired. Neuroscience tells us we have 10 brain skills and each one of us has skills that are strong (and skills that are not strong). In this class, you’ll hear about each of these skills so you can identify where the weak areas are for you and most importantly, learn what you can do about it. This three hour class is $50 and space is limited. The next session will be held on Thursday, Nov. 5, from 11-4 p.m. Register here.    
  • Team Leadership – Online – Team leaders must account for the special and unique circumstance of working in a team where responsibility, accountability, communication, and leadership are shared. Know the benefits and challenges as well as key sources of motivation of empowered teams. You'll also learn approaches for managing conflict in teams. This training takes place tomorrow, Wednesday Nov. 4, from 1-4 p.m. The cost is $89 and space is limited. Register here. 

Please visit our King County Eventbrite page website for more opportunities. For more information, contact the Learning and Development Team at KCTraining@kingcounty.gov or visit Learning and Development at www.kingcounty.gov/learning. 


Pet of the Week: Bronco 

Hi! My name is Bronco and I am available for adoption. I have a whopping 100lbs of love to give! I am a very smart dog! At the shelter I am practicing how to sit! I am an affectionate lovebug who would be thrilled to cuddle up with you at home! My caregivers have observed that I do not get along with other dogs. I will need to be in a home with no other animals! I would love to be a couch potato with you! I love head pats and big fluffy blankets! My personality color is BLUE. I am a gentle and loving dog who likes to take things slow. I may get nervous in new situations, so I am looking for a family who understands that I might take some time to warm up. Once I get to know you, I will be a very devoted friend! 

Read more and view all available pets at www.kingcounty.gov/adoptapet. Have you or someone you know adopted a pet from RASKC? Let us know. We’d love to tell your story. 

Featured JobCustomer Information and Assistance Lead 

Salary: $28.57 - $36.22 Hourly 

Location: Kent, WA 

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

Department: DJA - Judicial Administration 

Job Number: 2020JF12373 

Division: Judicial Admin 

Closing: 11/11/2020 4:30 PM Pacific 

Learn more about this position or view all available positions. 

KC Headlines 

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