Organizational Excellence

Be an innovative, effective, engaged, and transparent organization focused on quality programs and services.

Goal 3, Objective 1

Implement programs and identify opportunities to support employee work-life balance and a positive work environment, including a Telework Policy.

In Progress 30%

Updated: January 2024

Summary of objective implementation status (achievements or progress over last year; significant delays or issues, etc.)

Human Resources continues to identify opportunities and implement strategies to support employee work-life balance and a positive work culture.

On May 3, 2022, the Board of Supervisors adopted the Sonoma County Telework Policy. Payroll data for the month of August 2023 shows that 49% of permanent employees participated in telework during the month with approximately 25% of the total hours worked done in remote locations.

Activities in 2023:

  • Human Resources implemented a new training program offering employees a wide and rich selection of training and professional development opportunities. The FOUR-TIER SYSTEM guides employees in their training participation and advancement goals within the County. Trainings are placed within the respective Tiers, so employees can easily select appropriate topics and measure their progress. The program establishes innovative and enhanced education programs that emphasize staff wellbeing, cultural belonging, and advancement.

All program/course key competencies are categorized under Sonoma County’s Five Values: Equity, Accountability, Collaboration, Excellence, and Innovation. These animate the County’s values and link what we believe with how we perform. Key competencies are applied to all training offerings. The fourth tier designed for executives, is in the final stages of development and will begin being offered in 2024.

  • On November 8, 2023, Human Resources sponsored a virtual event that included classes for County staff focused on their mental health and well-being. A total of 14 classes were offered which included topics such as: Maintaining Balance in Life, Self-Care – Small Changes for Positive Results, Maintaining Wellbeing Through Times of Uncertainty, and Relaxation Techniques, as well as others. Out of the 14 classes offered, a total of 908 completions were recorded.

In the coming year, Human Resources will conduct an employee engagement survey which will solicit additional information from employees to continue to identify other opportunities to support this objective.

Key milestone update (include relevant metrics, if applicable)

  • Complete Implementation of Countywide Telework Policy – Completed May 5, 2022
  • Identify and communicate currently available training curriculum –Completed/ongoing
  • Incorporate questions related to work-life balance and work environment in employee engagement survey (OE 3-2) – Survey postponed to April 2024 – as a result, all other activities below have been pushed out.
  • Begin Evaluating Survey results –July 2024
  • Outreach to outside agencies/jurisdictions – September 2024
  • Establish Working Group to begin reviewing data – December 2024
  • Evaluate data and identify potential options for consideration – June 2025
  • Communicate/Advertise County programs and commitment to work/life balance and positive work culture in recruitment /marketing materials and internally. – September 2025

Coordination and partnership update

Intersection with Organizational Excellence Objective 3.2 – (Conduct an employee engagement survey by mid-2022, and based on survey data, develop, and implement strategies to incorporate survey outcomes into future operational planning.) This survey will include questions about work life balance and solicit employee suggestions. – Employee survey date moved to June 2024.

Community, equity, and climate update

Human Resources working with the Office of Equity and utilizing the Equity Toolkit in the development of LEAD (Leaders Engaged in Authentic Development), the County’s executive training program.

Telework helps to support the County’s strategic objective of reducing greenhouse gases by lowering the number of employees driving to work each day.

Funding narrative (If this objective received Strategic Plan funding in year 1 or year 2, please provide a status of expenditures to date.)

This objective is fully funded, though future programs may require additional funding.