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Commerce Specialist 1 - Housing Finance Unit (05342)

Company: State of Washington
Location: Olympia
Posted on: June 8, 2021

Job Description:

At the Department of Commerce (Commerce), we are creative, collaborative, and trusted. We identify opportunities, to deliver critical funding and services to strengthen communities, we cultivate an environment in which we continuously learn, and we own our work.

SPECIAL NOTE:Currently, Commerce is closed to the public as a result of the pandemic. While the building is closed, most Commerce staff work remotely. For any staff working at Town Square, Commerce requires strict adherence to social distancing protocols and anyone entering the Town Square is required to wear a mask. It is anticipated that interviews for this position will be held using virtual videoconferencing.

The Community Services and Housing Division (CSHD) partners with local governments and nonprofits to develop and preserve affordable housing, promote individual and family self-sufficiency, reduce homelessness, address the causes and effects of crime and violence, and invest in community facilities.

This position performs professional level work within the Housing Finance Unit (HFU) of CSHD, and is responsible for specific tasks within the State Housing Trust Fund(HTF)and the federal HOME and National Housing Trust Fund (NHTF) programs. This position reports to the Data Systems Team (DST) Manager and acts as the unit's system administrator and lead technical support for the Housing Contract Management System (HCMS).HCMS System Administration & Technical Support

* Utilizes understanding of unit specific best practices with Housing Contract Management System (HCMS) data structure, HFU business processes, and Data Systems Team and affordable housing to provide technical assistance to HFU staff and management in use of HCMS. * Works with HFU subject matter experts to include; program managers, leadership, Information Services (IS) Business Analysts and/or vendors to maintain and enhance the HCMS system to meet the business needs of the unit. * Leads a team of system users across the unit with the development of desired * enhancement requests including developing visual mockups and requirements documentation. * Coordinates with IS Business Analyst or vendor/developer to ensure all elements of the desired enhancement, upgrade or correction are sufficiently documented for the IS teams. Ensures that HFU system users kept informed about development timelines, changes, adjustments or delays throughout the development process. * Troubleshoot and/or coordinates with unit staff to investigate, scope out, and manage resolutions of system bugs and errors. * Coordinates HCMS version release updates with all HFU business teams and leads. With IS Business Analyst, creates user acceptance testing processes and documentation updates for each release.

* Coordinates with unit CMS Super User as needed to address issues that are not specific to HFU features in HCMS.

Systems Documentation and Staff Training

* Creates and maintains system use documentation to align with business processes. * Provides customized individual or group virtual training sessions, presentations, step-by-step tutorials, written instructions, manuals, as needed, to support system users with use of HCMS. * With guidance from IS Business Analyst, HFU managers and/or MA5, elicits and documents business and system requirements from each business team.

Data Systems Team SharePoint Administrator

* Manages all elements of the Data Systems Team site including forms, team pages, calendars, task functionality, and systems. Ensures documents are complete, current and align with larger HFU unit process documentation. * Ensures all data system and Data Systems Team documentation and resources on SharePoint page are current and consistent with network saved resources by systematically updating and reviewing all materials after each system release. * Manages the unit's Data Team Request (DTR) task list by regularly processing, tracking and updating all Data Systems Team assigned tasks. Ensures alignment with agency Information Systems (IS) Development Tasks and communicates task timeline and status details with other teams or managers as needed. * Will use housing and fiscal data systems such as the Web Based Annual Reporting System (WBARS), Housing Contract Management System (HCMS), Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development's IDIS system for reporting spending and data, and the Department of Commerce's Contracts Management System (CMS) for reporting invoicing & contract management data. * Serve as back up for some MA5, MA4, CMS SuperUser tasks or coordination as needed. * Other duties as required.

Required Qualifications:

* Bachelor Degree AND one year of professional experience in community, trade or economic development (preferably in affordable housing, housing finance, real estate, contracting, or in a related field); OR, if the applicant does not have a Bachelor Degree, five years' total experience as described. * One year of professional experience, independently or as part of a team, identifying and documenting current data system related business processes, or proposed new processes generated by work requests, new legislation, and other sources of change.

Desired Qualifications:

* Professional experience analyzing and coordinating user database needs using a variety of techniques to provide effective technical assistance and resolve complex problems. * Experience or knowledge of specific housing and fiscal data systems (preferred) such as: the Web Based Annual Reporting System (WBARS), Housing Contract Management System (HCMS), Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development's IDIS system for reporting spending and data, and the Department of Commerce's Contracts Management System (CMS) for reporting invoicing & contract management data. * Demonstrated high-level interpersonal communication skills; two-way communication, information sharing and gathering, ability to maintain confidentiality and sound judgement regarding specific communications, and utilizing customer/ employee/employer feedback. * Working within and understanding the principles, practices, and techniques of affordable housing capital financing, sources of funds, legislation, regulation, and reporting. * Demonstrated experience successfully communicating technical information to a non-technical audience. * Strong understanding of interpreting, writing and applying detailed policies and procedures. * Strong understanding of statistics, performance, and outcome measurement.

I want to work for Commerce!How do I apply?

In addition to completing the online application and answering the supplemental questions, applicants must attach the following documents to their profile in order to be considered for this position:

* A letter of interest describing how you meet the specific qualifications for this position; * A current resume detailing experience and education; and * A list of at least three professional references.

The initial screening will be solely based on the contents and completeness of your application and the materials submitted. All information may be verified and documentation may be required.

This position is covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

For questions about this recruitment, please contact Jose Dominguez at 360-878-2969 or jose.dominguez@commerce.wa.gov.

Who we are:

At Commerce, we're a little different. But for you, it might just be the perfect fit. We're a state agency but operate like a business with the understanding we need to know our customer's needs to fulfill them. Our Olympia offices are open Monday through Friday (flexible schedules are available). Our parking is free and many of our employees bike year round.

Washington State offers commuting programs, including free, subsidized and reduced public transportation incentives. There are approximately 300 employees in our agency. We are committed to our work and value balance in our personal lives. We hire people for a position and encourage them to train for growth opportunities.

What we do:

We are the lead state agency charged with strengthening communities. We administer a diverse portfolio of programs and services, and we support several state boards and commissions.

Our key customers include businesses, local governments and community-based organizations. We also play the crucial role of convening numerous local, state, regional and federal partners and stakeholders, public and private. Together we work to support the Governor's priorities and achieve shared goals and objectives for the citizens of Washington.

Work from Anywhere

This position may be located anywhere within Washington state though occasional travel to the Olympia office or in-state travel to attend events or meetings may be required. If selected, you will need to travel to pick up equipment and receive instruction while observing social distancing. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, telework (mobile-work) is expected. When approved to return, the incumbent will work with their supervisor to identify an appropriate work schedule and balance, including telework and reporting to the Olympia, Washington duty station for work activities, if needed.


As the state's capitol, Olympia is located off Interstate 5 at the south end of the Puget Sound roughly half-way between Seattle and Portland, and less than a two hour drive to the coast, temperate rainforest, mountains, urban city, or farmlands. With year-round art festivals, parades, theater shows, concerts, and community events, Olympia and its surrounding cities have something for everyone. For parents, it boasts some of the best schools in the nation and the renowned HandsOn Children's Museum. Home to two universities (The Evergreen State College and Saint Martin's University), Olympia residents also have the opportunity to pursue a degree while working!


Spokane is located in the heart of the Inland Northwest and is the second most populous city in Washington. The Spokane River runs through the city and beautiful Riverfront Park in downtown Spokane. An array of enjoyable outdoor activities are right out our back door; including ski resorts, white-water rafting, camping areas, hiking trails, lakes, and the Centennial trail. Amazed by the arts? Show some love to your artistic side with a trip to the Spokane Region. Broadway performances, intriguing art galleries, world-class museums and powerful stage performances are waiting to be discovered.


Being surrounded by greenery year round has earned the Seattle the nickname of the Emerald City. Seattle is an exciting urban city surrounded by unmatched natural beauty with a wide variety of outdoor attractions within the city such as Discovery Park and Olympic Sculpture Park. Feel like getting away from the city? Seattle is centrally located surrounded by the Puget Sound and miles of hiking trails within driving distance. Seattle is home to a variety of attractions to include the Seattle Art Museum, Pike Place Market, and historic Pioneer Square. Art and Culture more your style? Seattle is home to more than 100 theater companies, the Seattle Symphony, as well as museums and galleries. Sports enthusiast? Seattle is home to professional football, soccer and baseball teams as well as a variety of collegiate sports to choose from.

Additional Information:

The Washington State Department of Commerce complies with the employment eligibility verification requirements of the federal Form I-9. The selected candidate must be able to provide proof of identity and eligibility to work in the United States consistent with the requirements of that form on the first day of employment.

The Washington State Department of Commerce is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, veterans or people with military status, and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application, testing, or interview process or this job announcement in an alternative format may call Human Resources at (360) 725-2650. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call through the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.

Keywords: State of Washington, Olympia , Commerce Specialist 1 - Housing Finance Unit (05342), Other , Olympia, Washington

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