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Employee Relations Specialist (HR Specialist IV) - Denver

This position is only open to Colorado state residents.



  • This position is not covered by the Partnership Agreement between the State of Colorado and Colorado Workers for Innovative and New Solutions (COWins).
  • New employees to the State will be paid biweekly. There are 26 biweekly pay periods in a year.

About CDOT 
Do you want to make a difference in Coloradans’ lives? Do you have a passion for helping people and keeping them safe? At the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), you will have the opportunity to do just that. The work our people do contributes to keeping Coloradans and visitors safe and provides freedom, connection, and experience through travel. Please visit our careers page to learn about CDOT and how we are making Colorado a great place to live, work and play, now and for the future! Also, check out our excellent benefits package!
CDOT for All
CDOT’s strength is our people, and our commitment to our people is to shape, support, and sustain the employee experience, and ultimately, create a supportive workplace where everyone, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, citizenship status, education, disability, socio-economic status, or any other identity, has the opportunity to thrive.

Some positions may qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. For more information, go to 

The eligible list created from this announcement may be used to fill current and future vacancies for a period of up to 6 months.


Description of Job

About the Work Unit
The Division of Human Resources (DHR) provides all human resources (HR) functions at the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), which includes performance management, compensation and benefits, the employee relations programs, labor relations, HR compliance, organizational & employee development, recruitment, selection,  and HR Information Systems. DHR is the point of contact for all HR related activities and ensures that department policies and procedures, state personnel rules and procedures, state and federal employment laws, and HR best practices are appropriately implemented at CDOT.

About the Position
There are two positions available. One position will be CDOT’s litigation specialist for State Personnel Board or Director appeals or other employment litigation. One position will be CDOT’s POWR Act specialist for statewide complaints of harassment, discrimination or unfair employment practices. 
These positions provide CDOT employees and managers with strategic consultation, advice, counseling, and guidance on issues that relate to the rules of the Colorado Personnel system; CDOT policies and procedures; local, state and federal employment laws; Department of Personnel & Administration (DPA) guidance; and Governor Executive orders. Recommend resolutions to management with focus to minimize legal risk and to meet the business needs of the organization. Ensure employees are provided their rights as a State employee. Conduct complex workplace investigations that focus primarily on allegations of CDOT policy violations, Title VII, and the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act (CADA). Author position statements to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Colorado Civil Rights Division (CCRD) on behalf of CDOT Headquarters Divisions. Recommend policy and procedure changes to management to ensure that legal and professional best practices are implemented.
Your duties and responsibilities may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Provide consultation and technical guidance on workplace concerns and on issues and questions related to the State of Colorado Personnel Rules and Regulations (mostly Chapters 6-12), Colorado constitution, state and federal laws and regulations, as well as CDOT policies and procedures.
  • Ensure consistent application of all laws and rules across CDOT, e.g., Title VII, ADA, USERRA, etc.
  • Apprise and guide CDOT managers in best practices related to employment, civil rights, and professional HR management issues.
  • Serve as consultant to both management and employees regarding appropriate implementation of performance management techniques, including corrective and disciplinary actions.
  • Counsel employees on options in solving workplace concerns.
  • Create, maintain, and ensure consistency with Employee Relations case files.
  • Conduct complex workplace investigations, for example workplace violence, policy violations, and as needed, allegations of Title VII and CADA. Consult with the Appointing Authority on investigation findings and observations. Ensure confidentiality and the integrity of the investigation and investigation report.
  • Author position statements to EEOC and CCRD on behalf of the Department.
  • Recommend policy and procedure changes to management to ensure that legal and professional best practices are implemented.
  • Perform intake of complaints from supervisors and employees concerning performance and conduct issues, rules violations, allegations of discrimination, harassment including sexual harassment, retaliation, workplace violence, anonymous complaints from the public, whistleblower complaints, inappropriate cyber activities, and unfair employment practices.
  • Conduct statewide investigations of harassment claims or unfair employment practices. Support CDOT Regions in investigating harassment claims, e.g. when the Regions have an investigator neutrality concern and/or need additional support due to internal civil rights staff workloads.
  • Manage the POWR Act program administration, including maintaining a central repository for complaints and ensuring records compliance, providing quantitative and qualitative data on the program, providing mediation and conflict resolution, determining action plans, ensuring training compliance, etc.
  • Manage employment litigation for CDOT, including managing changes to rules, initiating litigation and preservation hold notices, maintaining case files, explaining responsibilities required per rules, maintaining confidential settlement agreement files and possibly assisting in execution of agreement, tracking cases and keeping Regional Civil Rights Managers informed on their cases, etc.
  • Teach the Progressive Discipline and Defensible Documentation course, which is a mandatory supervisor training.
  • Prepare and deliver monthly Administrative Leave usage reports to DPA.
  • Serve as a backup to other Employee Relations functions, such as ADA, Unemployment, Litigation, and/or the POWR Act.
  • Other job duties as assigned.

Work Environment:

  • Your schedule will primarily be 8:00 am – 5:00 pm work hours, Monday-Friday, but we are flexible to meet your work/life balance needs while ensuring CDOT business needs are met.
  • You will likely work a hybrid schedule with a combination of in-office and remote work. The current expectation is to be in the office at least one day per week, which is subject to change.
  • Occasional travel throughout the state for meetings, training, and investigations.
  • Politically sensitive environment requiring confidentiality.



Minimum Qualifications, Substitutions, Conditions of Employment & Appeal Rights

Minimum Qualifications
Experience Only:

  • At least 7 years of human resources experience or investigations experience which included at least 3 years of professional-level employee relations experience.

Education and Experience:

  • A combination of related education and experience equal to 7 years:
    • College-level education in human resources, industrial/organizational psychology, law, management, business administration, or another field of study closely related to the duties of this position.
    • Professional-level employee relations experience.