1/20/21 - A Message from Secretary Hou: Bright Spot - IDHS HR Team

Good Afternoon IDHS Staff,

By now you may have learned about the new HR system that was rolled out yesterday - the Enterprise Resource Planning System - Human Capital Management (ERP HCM). Today, I am thrilled to thank our Human Resources (HR) team for their contribution to this initiative and for their ongoing work to ensure that this new system will be a success at IDHS, and to highlight their efforts during the pandemic in today's Bright Spot.

With approximately 13,200 employees at IDHS, we are supported by a dynamic team of HR professionals. Together, we have 102 central HR staff, 22 facility liaisons, and 32 FMLA coordinators. As HR is charged with onboarding new employees and supporting employee benefits, COVID brought unique challenges that encouraged the modernization of old systems and processes that required in-person tasks. In addition to switching to working remotely, the HR team was also forced to figure out how to interview new employees, recruit new talent, and provide effective training - all during a hiring freeze on non-essential personnel that has been ongoing since March 2020.

However, through the hiring freeze and pandemic challenges, IDHS was able to increase our teams in areas that needed talent to maximize our agency impact. Their work allowed us to ensure that facilities and offices had the staff they needed so that Illinois families were receiving food and medical care. Through their tenacity, in the last six months, we hosted 73 recruitment presentations, conducted more than 1,575 interviews, and made 586 hires. More than 5,840 employees participated in Webinar/ CBLs, and 66,250 COVID CBLs were completed. The team worked tireless on evenings and weekends to make this process a success, working to reprogram computer systems to ensure that every employee continued to receive paychecks.

We owe a thank you to all of the HR team that kept us moving forward as an agency, and a specific thank you to the the groups led by Brad Stutz (Payroll), Angela Mizeur (BRS), Jayne Bethard (Classifications), Michelle Julian (CRHU), Deanna Bandy, Missy Bringle, Johgina Densmore, and Quinetta Grant (Training). Finally, another special thank you to the HR Liaisons at the facilities and divisions who went above and beyond in implementing new COVID policies.

Thank you,


Grace B. Hou

Secretary, IDHS