By Sue Ellen Woodcock
When Mayor Brian Arrigo took office in 2016 he had 400 employees, yet no job descriptions, policies or procedures. Today, jobs are being advertised and people are being hired properly.
Helping him along the way is Sandi Charlton, a human resources expert, who is slated to work with city officials until June 30. Charlton comes from the Collins Center at UMass, Boston and came to Revere as a result of a human resources report done for the City in 2016.
The city will be hiring a permanent human resources staffer and is looking also for a retirement analyst.
Arrigo mentioned that the UMass-Collins Center Report noted the city lacked policies and procedures when it comes to hiring and firing. During research for the report it was found that it was not uncommon for someone to just show up for a new job without the supervisor knowing it. It was found that one employee making $80,000 a year and working 19 hours a week.
Now things are different at City Hall. There is no more “popping in” and announcing your here for the job opening.
“It speaks to the transparency we’re trying to bring and the opportunity for residents to apply,” Arrigo said in his office. “Now the department head is involved in the process.”
The word is out. When a the 311 department a job posting went out for a supervisor and a call-taker, there were upwards of 150 applicants. The position for director of parking also drew numerous applicants.
Charlton is also holding seminars for ethics training, customer service, sensitivity training, and training for managers. Arrigo added that there is now also training regarding sexual harassment and discrimination.
“We want to empower department heads and get the most out of our employees,” Arrigo said. “The benefit is that we get a more professional work force and the city gets the best and the brightest. We take a hard look at qualifications and make sure it’s the right fit.” In hiring of a permanent human resources director Arrigo is making sure that person in trained in human resources.
“Consistency and standards across the board reduce the city’s liability,” Arrigo said. “It helps build staff morale and provide better service. Something that hasn’t been here in the last three decades. People can now come work for the city and grow professionally.”