Human Resources Director (Head of HR, People and Culture)

  • Bellwether Housing
  • Temporary Remote
  • Jan 25, 2021
Full time Human Resources

Job Description

About Bellwether Housing

Bellwether Housing was founded in 1980 to create housing for lower wage workers close to their jobs. After 40 years of success and growth, Bellwether is Seattle’s largest nonprofit affordable housing provider.

We serve over 3,500 residents in 2,100 homes and we have over 1,000 homes in development. We locate our buildings near transit, workplaces, schools, and other amenities. This way, our residents – families, large and small, households recovering from homelessness, seniors, immigrants, preschool teachers and social workers, and young people just starting out – have access to the opportunity and prosperity of our region and, in turn, cultivate a more vibrant and equitable city.

Bellwether is experiencing a period of unprecedented growth. Over the next five years, we plan to develop & acquire 2,500 new homes for low- and moderate-income residents of urban King County. In addition to expanding our portfolio, we will be expanding our workforce and developing our organizational culture to accommodate our evolving organization. You can view our Strategic Plan here.

Our Commitment to Anti-Racism

We recognize that our country’s inequitable housing system has played a significant role in upholding the white supremacy on which America was founded. Our country has a history of intentional, government led discriminatory housing practices, such as redlining, that advantage white people and disadvantage Black people and other people of color. These racist practices have caused disparate outcomes and deeply impacted the racial wealth gap in America. We operate in a city with a history of housing segregation, redlining, and systematically denying people of color access to safe and affordable homes. We cannot create stable communities through affordable housing without addressing racial justice. Housing justice is racial justice.

 Bellwether Housing is committed to becoming an anti-racist organization and dismantling the systemic and institutionalized racism on which our country was built. Our anti-racism work is led by a 13-person Equity Committee made up of staff from across our organization. We are working on building anti-racist education and action within our organization. While we aspire to dismantle white supremacy culture in our organization, we acknowledge that we have a lot more work to do to fully live this goal. We pledge to be transparent about our organization’s anti-racism journey. To learn more, visit our website for organizational demographics and blog posts about our anti-racism work.

About the Position

The Director of People and Culture leads all activities related to our people and organizational culture. As part of our Leadership Team, the Director is a strategic partner in improving our organization's employment policies, practices, and culture. This role oversees all HR functions including recruitment, diversity and inclusion, compensation, employee relations, benefits, training, and performance management. 

2020 was a year of learning, challenge, and change for Bellwether. From implementing remote work to confronting racial injustice internally and externally, we have framed these crises as an opportunity to reinvent ourselves. The Director of People and Culture will be responsible for ensuring that lessons we have learned are applied and integrated into our workplace going forward. 

Duties and Responsibilities

Strategic & Organizational Leadership

- Shape organizational objectives, particularly those impacting employees and their ability to achieve established goals.

- Evaluate the impact of growth on the organization, assess training and professional development needs, and succession planning. 

- Collaborate with the leadership team to develop staffing models that support organizational growth.

- Implement plans to support employees through changes brought on by rapid growth and continued social uncertainty.

- Drive HR programs to increase performance and employee engagement, create a positive work culture, and improve retention and employee relations. 

- Analyze, prepare, and present insightful information to the leadership team and board of directors in support of strategic planning and decision making.

Recruitment and Workforce Planning

- Develop and implement a progressive and proactive compensation and benefits program that responds to the rapidly changing and competitive Puget Sound labor market.

- Understand retention and employee engagement and develop programs, processes, and models to increase retention and staff engagement.

- Partner with managers on organizational design, workforce planning, succession planning, talent development, and organizational health priorities. 

- Champion an environment of equity and antiracism. Ensure fair and equitable application of compensation, HR policies, and employee relations processes. 

- Manage benefits package, particularly in plan design, broker relationships, and cost containment.

Employee Relations

- Monitor employee "pulse" and create an environment that supports high employee engagement and attracts and retains a diverse, talented staff.

- Build a strong and trusted relationship with employees and managers. Serve as a resource to managers and employees on employee relations issues. Provide advice, counsel, and support in resolving issues, disputes, and other sensitive matters. Guide and support managers to bring the best experience and solutions to employees.

- Encourage cross-departmental collaboration, personal initiative, accountability, and responsibility at all levels of the organization.

Organizational effectiveness

- Identify competency, knowledge, and talent needs within the organization.  Develop programs for enhancing skills and knowledge to provide opportunities for employee development and career advancement.

- Lead HR team, leadership team and other stakeholders in review and update of the employee handbook.  

- Establish robust employee onboarding, orientation, and offboarding processes in collaboration with all organizational departments.

- Create a service-oriented environment that motivates and supports employees and managers.

- Develop and evolve employee policies, as necessary, to keep abreast of the changing employment law landscape and maintain compliance with local, state, and federal laws. 

- Provide basic legal interpretations of employment-related matters while utilizing legal counsel for more complex issues.

- Maintain a thorough knowledge of and ensure compliance with regulatory environment including EEO, Fair Labor Standards, Wage and Hour, FMLA, etc. 

- Administer robust employee benefits plan and communicate reliable information about plan to employees, former employees, managers, and HR. 

- Research and resolve complex benefits and/or retirement issues, delivering exceptional customer service to employees, with a constant view towards advancing equity and antiracism policies and practices.


We believe that highest performing teams include people from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences who respectfully challenge each other. We are committed to building an open, diverse, and inclusive culture for all employees. We have learned from experience that some of the best people do not always match our requirements perfectly – if you are interested and think you could be successful in this role, please don’t hesitate to apply. 

Bellwether is committed to becoming an antiracist organization and strongly encourages applications from candidates of color.

- Experience working directly with people from diverse racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds.  

- Personal or professional experience in anti-oppression work.

- Personable, approachable, visible, with ability to operate with humility, compassion, and patience.

- Commitment to equity and diversity within the organization, HR/Admin team, and residents we serve. 

- Excellent communication skills with ability to connect with racially, ethnically, non-English speaking, and socioeconomically diverse communities. 

- Clear communicator; transparent; sets clear expectations and holds themselves and team accountable for meeting expectations.

- Collaborative, engaging leadership style with commitment to leading and mentoring a team of developing HR professionals.

- Bachelor’s Degree in HR Management or related field with 7+ years of experience, with increasing levels of responsibility, in an HR leadership role. 

- Thorough knowledge of human resources practices, procedures, laws, and regulations.

- Ability to influence leaders and build strong relationships interdepartmentally.

- Experience managing various Human Resource Information Systems (HRIS). 

Desired Qualifications

- Formal or informal education about anti-racism, unconscious bias, and white supremacy.

- SPHR or SHRM-SCP certification.

Other Position Requirements

- Candidates selected for this position must pass a criminal history background check prior to employment with Bellwether Housing.

Compensation: $140k to $160k + per year DOE, benefits

Benefits: Bellwether Housing provides 24 days of PTO and 11 paid holidays in the first year of employment for all employees working over 20 hours per week. We have a 403(b)-retirement plan with immediate eligibility for employee contributions and employer matching after 15 months of service; three medical plans to choose from, one with an employer funded HSA; dental; vision; flexible spending accounts, disability (short- and long-term); employer paid life insurance; and commuter benefits.

Bellwether Housing is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity, including the diversity of thought and experience. We are committed to building an open and inclusive culture for all employees. We consider all applicants without regard to education, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, skills, and level of experience. All interested candidates are encouraged to apply.