Pulaski County Receives VACO Achievement Award

PULASKI COUNTY, VA – Pulaski County is pleased to announce its 2022 Virginia Association of Counties (VACo) Achievement Award in the Communications Category.

VACo recognizes excellence in local government programs. VACO received over 100 submissions for the Achievement Awards. Winning entries focused on addressing issues of the pandemic, connecting citizens, and other challenges that counties face daily.

Pulaski County received an Achievement Award for a mixed-media communications campaign to help with employee recruitment and retention.

“I am pleased that Pulaski County was recognized statewide for its strategic efforts in

problem-solving through a best practice award from our state association”, said Pulaski County Administrator, Jonathan Sweet. “This award was made possible through creative collaborations between our Tourism and HR departments and a concerted focus from our leadership to attract and retain the best talent to the Pulaski County Team.”

Pulaski County, like most of the nation in both the private and public sectors during COVID-19, faced an employment crisis in critical departments: PSA, Emergency Services, Waste and Water Management, and Maintenance Management. These vacancies affected the functionality of the departments, compounded the workload of existing staff and created a decline in team morale.

“We took a creative and strategic marketing approach to attract personale,” said Pulaski County Tourism Marketing & Communications Coordinator, Shelby Vandergriff. “By utilizing personal testimonials from employee ambassadors on social media, radio and print media, we were able to attract the right people for the specified areas of need.”

The heartfelt testimonies of the employees resonated with the target audience and served as the inspiration for the campaign tagline – “Work Where Your Job Makes a Real Difference.”

Alongside the mixed media communications and marketing efforts, Pulaski County created an appreciation event and referral program for all current and new employees.

“The Pulaski County Human Resources Department is truly invested in our employees and attracting talent”, said Pulaski County Human Resources Director, Tammy Nichols. “As part of the campaign, we re-evaluated our hiring processes and revamped our onboarding system.”

Pulaski County Human Resources now provides a faster means for employees to complete paperwork electronically, assigns mentors for new hires and provides welcome packets to new employees joining the Pulaski County Team as result of this effort.

VACo Award submissions can be found at www.vaco.org/county-profiles/achievement-awards/