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HR Consultant 1 - Benefits Specialist

Eastern Washington University

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Institutional & Business Affairs, Human Resources & Employee Development
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Job Details

HR Consultant 1 - Benefits Specialist

About Eastern Washington University:
Eastern Washington University is a regional, comprehensive public university located in Cheney and Spokane, Washington, with programs offered throughout the state and online with an enrollment of over 12,000 students. Eastern is one of six state-funded four-year institutions of higher education in Washington reporting to its own Board of Trustees.

Eastern’s 300-acre main campus is located in Cheney, a community of 11,000 residents 16 miles southwest of the state’s second largest city, Spokane. Eastern also offers programs in downtown Spokane at the Brand new Catalyst building and on the Riverpoint Campus which is shared with Washington State University. Eastern also offers program throughout the state based on the needs of the community. Eastern offers an array of bachelor’s and master’s degrees and one applied doctorate in physical therapy. EWU offers 135 fields of study, 9 master’s degrees, 12 graduate certificates, 39 graduate programs, 1 educational specialist degree, and 1 applied doctorate to more than 10,000 enrolled students.

Job Summary:
  • This position will close at midnight, September 12, 2021.
  • Eastern Washington University is currently seeking a team oriented Human Resources Consultant 1 - Benefits Specialist for our Benefits office which is part of Human Resources. This position coordinates the daily functions associated with the administration of the employees' benefits package, including knowledge of medical, dental, life long term disability insurances, deferred compensation programs and various retirement plans. This position frequently works on confidential, highly personal matters involving all employees. Ensuring the integrity of the confidentiality of information handled by this office is upheld at all times.

Distinguishing Characteristics
  • Demonstrated high-level attention to detail.
  • Ability to work independently, handle and meet multiple deadlines and daily job responsibilities simultaneously in an environment with frequent interruptions.
  • Ability to organize and prioritize workload.
  • Demonstrated strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Collaborative and customer service work style with the ability to modify communication style and techniques based on audience.
  • Demonstrated ability to maintain confidentiality
  • On top of salary, the University offers a comprehensive benefits package including health insurance, life and disability insurance and retirement. In addition, EWU offers generous vacation and sick leave accruals, 11 paid holidays per year and fringe benefits, such as tuition waiver for employees, discounted EWU sports tickets and free transportation through STA buses.

  • This is an open recruitment, three days' notice will be provided prior to closure of recruitment.

Required Qualifications:
  • Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources Management or related field and at least one year of experience in employee benefits and/or payroll functions or at least three years of experience with employee benefits and/or payroll functions. Experience with employee benefits includes monitoring eligibility, data entry, and customer support for benefits such as health (medical/dental) insurance, long term disability insurance, life insurance, employee leave and/or worker’s compensation.
  • Data entry experience.
  • Demonstrated strong technical skills related to data entry of financial or benefit information.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Demonstrated experience working with confidential records
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite
  • Candidate must demonstrate interest, ability and/or experience promoting cultural competency, universal accessibility and/or diversity.

Preferred Qualifications:
  • Knowledge of the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems, specifically PERS & TRS eligibility and reporting requirements
  • Knowledge of the Washington State Health Care Authority rules and regulations and experience coordinating/consulting with the Health Care Authority and/or knowledge of retirement plans such as 403(b)Tax Sheltered Annuity Plan or 457 Deferred Compensation.

Other Skills and Abilities:

Job Duties:
% of Time: 100
Responsibility / Duty:
  • Responsible for data entry into Banner and Health Care Authority system for all benefit deductions, while ensuring accuracy, compliancy and timeliness. 
  • Responsible for monitoring eligibility of non-student hourly employees for retirement participation and insurance eligibility and quarterly faculty for insurance eligibility including: generating reports from payroll and other University systems; extracting, compiling, and analyzing data; and preparing narrative or statistical reports; 
  • Assist employees with questions about benefits, impacts of life events related to benefits, and benefit related-policies. 
  • Processes health benefits for all eligible employee’s including medical, dental, life and long-term disability insurance. 
  • Ensures processes, documents and policies are compliant with federal, state, and local regulations. 
  • Working knowledge and ability to provide accurate information to employee’s regarding the various retirement plans including PERS, TRS, LEOFF & EWURP (EWU Retirement Plan). Set up confidential personnel employee files and keep files up to date. 
  • Monitor daily activities and be able to identify, escalate, and resolve issues as they arise. Compose and prepare correspondence using word processing, graphics, statistical, spreadsheet and/or data base software; 
  • Maintain Human Resources Benefits office website. 
  • Responsible for learning and keeping up to date in all plan specifications and changes for compliance with applicable WAC’s, RCW’s, IRS rules & laws. Coordinate and schedule multiple annual functions, workshops, seminars, briefings and meetings with public and/or other state agencies. 
  • May confer regularly with other organizations and agencies regarding interpretation and implementation of institutional policies related to insurance and retirement programs. 
  • Participates on committees and attends events as deemed appropriate and as approved.

Essential Function Indicator: Yes

Conditions of Employment:
  • This position, during the course of university employment will be involved in the receipt of, or accountability for, university funds or other items of value; as well as the unsupervised access with the developmentally disabled, vulnerable adults or children under the age of 16. The offer of employment is contingent upon successful completion and passing of a background check prior to beginning employment.

  • This position is covered by the Washington Federation of State Employees’ Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Salary Information: $44,268 - $58,020

Posting Date: 04/02/2021
Open Until Further Notice: Yes
Closing Date: 9/12/2021
Screening to Begin: Immediately

Special Instructions to Applicants:
Submit your application materials through our online applications portal provided below. If you are unable to submit through the applicant portal, please contact Human Resources Services at (509) 359-2381.

To apply, visit

EWU does not discriminate in its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, citizenship or immigration status, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, genetic information, age, marital status, families with children, protected veteran or military status, HIV or hepatitis C, status as a mother breastfeeding her child, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability or the use of a trained guide dog or service animal by a person with a disability, as provided for and to the extent required by state and federal laws.

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Eastern Washington University is a student-centered, regionally based, comprehensive university. Its campus is located in Cheney, within the Spokane metropolitan area, with additional learning centers in the region and elsewhere in Washington State. Its mission is to prepare broadly educated, technologically proficient, and highly productive citizens to attain meaningful careers, to enjoy enriched lives, and to make contributions to a culturally diverse society.

Eastern Washington University will achieve its mission by providing:

  • an excellent student-centered learning environment;
  • professionally accomplished faculty who are strongly committed to student learning;
  • high-quality integrated, interdependent programs that build upon the region's assets and offer a broad range of choices as appropriate to the needs of the university's students and the region; and
  • exceptional student support services, resources, and facilities.
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