Thurston CountyOlympia 98501
Full Time

Payroll experience in a government or public sector environment using an automated financial management system.

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Payroll Specialist

Thurston County
Full Time Thurston County Auditor, 3000 Pacific Ave SE, Olympia, WA 98501, United States


This employment opportunity will remain open until filled. The Thurston County Auditor's Office reserves the right to close the recruitment at any time. To ensure consideration for this position, please submit your application, letter of interest, and resume as soon as possible. The first review of applicants will begin on September 25th, 2023. 
The Thurston County Auditor's Office is looking for a dedicated and reliable professional for our position to join our extraordinary team. We are an award-winning department with a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) for the 16th year in a row. Our financial team provides County government with a strong financial foundation and provides direct financial services and guidance to all County offices and departments. For more information about our department, click .
Essential functions may include, but are not limited to, the following:  
  • Perform technical, complex, and specialized financial, accounting and fiscal support services in payroll, and employee data processes for Thurston County and various outside agencies, assist in trouble-shooting, diagnosing and resolving payroll problems, along with maintaining a liaison with Human Resources compensation and benefit services to ensure compliance with legal requirements, labor agreements, and County policies.
  • Conduct in-depth analysis and review of data submitted by the departmental payroll liaisons for completeness and accuracy; research, evaluate and apply the use of personnel rules and labor contracts to ensure adherence to established pay standards in conjunction with state and federal regulations; verify changes of salary and hourly rates prior to the entry of pay data; verify daily work hours and gross earning amounts with concentration of attention on specifics such as FLSA (Fair Labor Standards Act) calculations, out of class, medical leave, and personal leave.
  • Be responsible for running complex processes used to generate reports for verification of hours and gross dollars by payroll liaisons; enter, approve and finalize all adjustments to payroll once main processing of entries is complete.
  • Conduct and participate in training one-on-one and group sessions as needed; provides payroll expertise, procedural instruction, and advice to departmental payroll liaisons and outside agency payroll clerks; answer questions, resolve complaints, explain policies and procedures regarding employment taxes, miscellaneous employee deductions and explain complex state and federal regulations;  cross train co-workers for backup; develops and recommend new and revised written procedures for all processes.
  • Conduct complex calculations of wage and overtime payments, payroll deductions, manual pay warrants, overpaid wages, and termination entitlements; balance remittances to outside agencies, edit payroll system output such as payroll registers and deduction reports for errors and out of balance conditions; determine necessary corrections to employee's earning records; and decipher, translate, code and enter complex payroll data.
  • An Associate of Arts degree in Accounting, business administration or related field, AND two (2) years technical experience performing payroll duties using a computerized payroll accounting system.  Work related experience may be substituted for required education on the basis of two (2) years of accounting technical experience equals one (1) year of education; OR, any equivalent combination of training and/or experience that provides the required knowledge, skills, and abilities. 
  • A valid Washington State Driver's License may be required for employment.
  • Must pass job related tests.
Desired Skills

Though not required, the ideal candidate will possess the following to perform the responsibilities of this position efficiently:

  • American Payroll Association's Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC).
  • Payroll experience in a government or public sector environment using an automated financial management system.
  • Centralized payroll experience with a large employer (more than 800 employees) with multiple collective bargaining agreements.
  • Experience in a financial office setting with use of the latest release of Microsoft Office Suite, including Word, Excel, Access
  • Knowledge of specialized bookkeeping and accounting principles and practices with an emphasis in payroll and personnel management; general office practices and procedures relating to payroll activities; federal, state and local laws as they apply to payroll administration; personnel/payroll system documentation; basic mathematical calculations.
  • Ability to implement and apply complex and relevant procedures, laws, labor agreements and personnel rules and regulations; clearly explain policies, procedures, and schedules; maintain financial records and prepare related reports; gather, evaluate, and document technical data; demonstrate effective customer service techniques; maintain confidentiality and exercise good judgment; conduct complex arithmetical computations with speed and accuracy; work efficiently under pressure and meet deadlines; establish and maintain effective work relationships with all levels of county management and staff and representatives of other government agencies; apply and use reconciliation procedures; independently organize and perform tasks with minimal supervision, and work in a team environment; operate standard office equipment; operate county standard computer systems and office software and hardware packages.