Dakota County has earned a Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award from the Minnesota Psychological Association.
The association recognizes a variety of Minnesota workplaces each year for encouraging employee health and well-being while enhancing organizational performance. Dakota County is only the second county to receive the award since 2006. The award focuses on five areas: employee involvement, work-life balance, employee growth and development, health and safety, and employee recognition.
County leaders said the award is an affirmation of efforts the County has been working on for a long time. Dakota County, which employs roughly 1,800 people, encourages employee involvement. In an effort to recruit and retain a skilled workforce, the County offers a competitive compensation and benefits package, and employees are encouraged to participate in a robust wellness initiative. The County also offers professional development opportunities and has created employee resource groups intended to strengthen employee communities.
Dakota County was nominated for the workplace award by Sand Creek, which administers its employee assistance program. The process included an application, questionnaire, survey of employees and visits with County leaders and employee focus groups.
Dakota County Board of Commissioners Chair Kathleen A. Gaylord credited the organization for making it the premier county in the state. The County Board heard a presentation about the award Tuesday, May 8.
"A lot of it has to do with all the hard work that goes on every day," Gaylord said, "and it's nice to see that people recognize and feel proud of the fact that it's a good place to work and you're making a difference."
As a state winner, Dakota County is eligible to seek national recognition from the American Psychological Association awards.