WILLMAR — Kandiyohi County’s first-ever remote work policy is on the agenda when the County Board of Commissioners meets on Tuesday at the Health and Human Services building.
If approved, it would allow some employees to work from home provided they have approval from their immediate supervisors. A remote work option would be considered a privilege. Employees working from home would be required to visit the office site each week.
The county has not had a policy for remote work. The COVID-19 pandemic and the need for some employees to work remotely showed that there can be some benefits to the employees as well as the employer, according to County Administrator Larry Kleindl. He said the county is considering the option of remote work as a tool to use when appropriate.
County work is very service-oriented, and most positions involve in-person contact with citizens and clients. Consequently, Kleindl said most employees will not be able to work remotely.
The administrator said employees who work remotely will be required to remain available to come in as needed to see clients.
The county’s intent is to start slow and build from there, he added.
Like other employers, the county contends with a tight labor market. The administrator said that the worker shortage is made obvious by the drop in the number of applicants received for open positions. A remote work policy may benefit the county in recruiting workers for positions where public interaction is limited.
Other business before the County Board on Tuesday includes an agreement and request for American Rescue Plan funding for the city of Prinsburg to make possible a broadband project; an agreement on improving a control structure for Timber Lake; a grant agreement for a two-year crime victim services program; and a nomination for the Southwest Emergency Management Services board of directors.
The regular board meeting starts at 10 a.m. Tuesday. The board meets at 9 a.m. as the Human Services Committee. Both meetings are in the board room at the HHS building, 2200 23rd St. N.E., Willmar.