From DHW Director Dave Jeppesen: Employee council taking shape to help DHW become an employer of choice in Idaho

September 1, 2023
DHW Director Dave Jeppesen

The Department of Health and Welfare (DHW) uses our Strategic Plan as a roadmap to define and share who we are as an agency, what our goals are, and how we plan to get there.

Over the past year, we have worked to follow our roadmap toward our mission of strengthening the health, safety, and independence of Idahoans. Our new Strategic Plan cycle began in July and goes through June 30, 2024.

Each week, the senior leadership team discusses real-time updates about progress in our strategic work. Today I want to highlight some of the progress and key achievements we’ve made.

Strategic Goal 1: Become an employer of choice for current and future DHW employees 

An engaged and skilled workforce is at the heart of the department’s work to serve Idahoans, so we want to make sure our team is supported and feels accomplished by the work they do.

Enhancing the work environment for staff, boosting employee retention rates, and recruiting new staff to increase accessibility and deliver uninterrupted services to Idahoans will make DHW an even better place to work.

The first Strategic Objective for our new Goal 1 is to use engagement surveys and employee feedback to improve the employee experience. To help us achieve this objective we’ve established Task 1.1.1: Create and implement an Employee Engagement Advisory Council (EEAC) by June 30, 2024.

We’re excited to report that we received 118 nominations, representing 103 unique individuals to serve on the council. This is a terrific response and shows how invested our employees are to help improve employee engagement across the department.

The committee will eventually seat between 16 and 20, so in the coming weeks nominations will be vetted and selections made with an eye toward finalizing the committee by Sept. 29.

As we reflect on the progress we hope to make through the work this new employee committee will undertake, I’m filled with gratitude and admiration for the hard work put in every day by DHW staff, and by the countless partners who continue to help us along the way.

As we prepare to move our focus toward next steps, I’m confident we’ll continue to innovate and collaborate in our work together to serve Idahoans.

I hope you have a safe and healthy weekend! 

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is dedicated to strengthening the health, safety, and independence of Idahoans. Learn more at 

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