Willamalane Reimagines Aquatics Hiring Process

New aquatics hiring events make it easier than ever to join the team.

Willamalane’s two swimming facilities have been operating on limited hours since reopening the pools last May due to a staffing shortage. To attract and hire more candidates, the Aquatics Department has overhauled the hiring process to make it easier and more accessible to applicants.

Under the new hiring model, an applicant can come to a hiring event, learn about the position, have a casual interview, and receive a job offer in just two hours. From there, the new employees undergo lifeguard and safety training on paid time, with all certifications paid for by the district.

“I thought the event went well in terms of having the information I needed to feel good about committing to the employment opportunity,” said Allie Camp, a newly-hired lifeguard looking for predictable evening hours. She appreciated the focus the aquatics team put on customer service, too. “Even though we were there to learn about lifeguarding and teaching swim lessons, they really hit home that a big part of our jobs would be patron-focused service,” she explained.

Willamalane’s aquatics supervisors say that traditional hiring methods weren’t cutting it, especially for their primary applicant base of high school and college students. Previously, Willamalane asked lifeguards and swim instructors to pay for their certification course and receive reimbursement upon hire. 

Aquatics Supervisor Kory Holt said, “We’re listening to our workforce and our applicants and working to remove all the barriers that would keep someone from applying. It’s absolutely, one hundred percent worth it if we can attract a big, talented team to keep the pools open and safe.”

For her part, Allie is excited to get started. “When the swim center reopened last winter, it made such a difference in my mental health to be able to swim again,” she said. “I enjoy being able to show up for Springfield.”

Learn about upcoming Aquatics Hiring Events here.

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