Ecology Action
  • 11-May-2022 to 10-Jul-2022 (PST)
  • Human Resources
  • Santa Cruz, CA, USA
  • Salary
  • Full Time

Fully benefited with PTO, 401K and Medical, Dental, and Vision Benefits; Bring your dog to work (when we return to office); Option to work remotely most of the time

Director of Human Resources

Ecology Action of Santa Cruz, CA is looking to hire a full-time Director of Human Resources to provide leadership to our HR Team and support employees at all levels across the business. Would you like to be a part of a nonprofit organization that champions the reduction of carbon emissions, facilitates alternative forms of transportation, supports sustainability on an industrial level nationwide and promotes community involvement? We operate on the principle that simplifying the process of making small changes drives decision-makers toward large-scale changes that benefit people and the planet. If so, read on!

Hiring and retaining outstanding staff is one of the reasons Ecology Action has been successful for over 50 years. We are currently seeking to fill our HR Director position with a leader who values teamwork, collaboration, coaching and mentoring others, and who will continue our tradition of openness and flexibility as we move forward. We are launching new operations and extending our services across the country while preserving our trust-based workplace culture. Working with a small HR team, the HR Director will provide both high-level leadership and tactical HR support across the organization.

As the senior HR executive, you will collaborate with the CEO and Executive Team to improve organizational capability, drive culture change, and adapt to evolving demands on our staff. The successful candidate for this position will have the ability to quickly grasp our business objectives and strategies, support managers and employees, and know how to leverage HR team members and capabilities to support the achievement of these objectives. The successful candidate will also understand how to balance being an employee advocate with ensuring business success.

At Ecology Action we are committed to diversity in our workforce and are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, persons with disabilities, veterans, and LGBTQI+ persons are highly encouraged to apply.


  • Provides strong organizational leadership for the HR function and team, implementing HR projects and initiatives with company-wide impact.
  • Collaborates with the Executive Team on the Strategic Planning Process.
  • Maintains a high level of integrity, honesty, and confidentiality in all matters.
  • Supports supervisors in the performance management process, making sure appropriate actions are being taken to achieve employee success.
  • Manages and resolves employee relations issues; completes effective, thorough, and objective investigations, using best practice fact-finding methodologies.
  • Advises managers on HR policies, their interpretation, and application.
  • Expands our diversity mission to help us stay on the cutting edge of a truly diverse, equitable and inclusive organization.
  • Oversees professional development activities across the entire organization and proactively addresses issues, coaching managers and employees towards success.
  • Works with all levels of management to set compensation for each position, participate in wage negotiations, and explain the rationale for compensation decisions. May manage additional aspects of the annual Compensation process, including researching and recommending budget for increases, understanding the market drivers for jobs, establishing ranges for each position, providing tools for managers to make decisions, supporting effective communication to employees, and participating in ongoing surveys.
  • Works closely with management and employees to improve work relationships, build morale, increase productivity and promote employee engagement, de-escalating issues as appropriate.
  • Addresses individual employee performance issues, implementing corrective actions as appropriate or laying the groundwork for and handling terminations when needed.
  • Recommends new approaches, policies and procedures to continually improve efficiency of the HR department and services performed.
  • Stays current on industry best practices that can be applied and/or implemented within the organization and maintains knowledge of legal requirements related to day-to-day. management of employees, reducing legal risks and ensuring regulatory compliance.
  • Tracks and reports on key HR metrics.

Culture Fit Essential Characteristics

  • A consummate professional who can be a strong HR advocate but who also has a clear understanding of the need for achieving business objectives and partnering with business leaders to fashion win-win results for the company and its valued employees.
  • A leader with a demonstrated record of working exceptionally well with other professionals
  • Persuasive, positive, collaborative and team-oriented while also being able to work independently and proactively to achieve stated goals.
  • Open to opposing views and willing to be flexible, yet firmly committed to excellence and legal compliance.
  • A relationship builder who can develop strong relationships with colleagues and openly articulate your concerns while still maintaining their trust and respect, known for having an open mind, warm heart, and a sense of humor.
  • Able to influence, coach and develop, especially at the Executive and Sr. Manager level, including having difficult conversations to enable positive outcomes.

Required Qualifications, Skills and Experience

  • 10+ years HR management experience
  • Bachelor's Degree
  • Proven success in an HR business partner leadership role within a professional organization that is committed to providing excellent customer service to internal and external customers
  • Extensive experience in all aspects of employee relations
  • Ability to implement organizational best practices and utilize analytics to assist decision-making
  • Superior written and verbal communication skills and facilitation skills.
  • The ability to work effectively within a collaborative team environment.
  • Possess a strong command of Microsoft Office products and embrace the use of new technologies
  • Experience in providing overall HR strategy while simultaneously performing hands-on HR functions to meet fluctuating needs and backfill for staff
  • Ability to work onsite in Santa Cruz, CA. Our offices are currently working remotely with the options for employees to come into the office

Desired Qualifications

  • More than 15 years of HR experience, with at least 8 years in a management role
  • Experience leading HR in a multi-state organization of 100+ employees
  • Strong knowledge of employment & immigration laws and regulations (FMLA, ADA, FLSA, Title VII, ADEA, USERRA, HIPPA, etc.)
  • Familiarity with compensation setting practices and working with managers to set compensation for current employees and new hires
  • Experience planning, organizing, and prioritizing multiple and simultaneous HR-related projects and programs in a changing corporate environment
  • HR Certification (SHRM-SCP or SPHR)

Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodation may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit, stand, talk and hear, and use a computer keyboard and monitor.

Work Environment: Ecology Action had a hybrid work environment even before COVID with many employees working remotely. This position could work remotely most of the time or in our downtown Santa Cruz headquarters. Living within a 3-hour commute of Santa Cruz is preferred.

Compensation: Ecology Action offers a competitive salary and a generous benefit package that includes medical, dental, vision and flexible spending benefits; a 401k-retirement plan with a 4% match; and group life insurance.

This position description outlines primary duties, qualifications, and job scope, but is not intended to be a comprehensive description of job responsibilities. Ecology Action believes that each employee makes a significant contribution to our success and should not be limited by their assigned responsibilities. We expect each employee to offer his/her services wherever and whenever necessary to ensure the success of our endeavors.

Ecology Action is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to diversity in its workforce. Candidates for this position must be legally authorized to work directly as an employee for any employer in the United States without visa sponsorship.

Ecology Action
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