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211 Information & Referral Specialist

United Way of Central Iowa
Des Moines, IA

Relocation expenses: Not paid

Entry Level
Full time
1 - 2 years of experience
High School Diploma
$31,000 to $40,000 per year

Published on 13 Aug 2021

Expires on 13 Aug 2021

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211 Information & Referral Specialist

United Way of Central Iowa is seeking a fulltime Information & Referral (I/R) Specialist to support and advance United Way’s mission of improving lives by providing information and referrals services to callers related to community health and human services, peer counseling, and crisis intervention via a helpline call center. The I/R Specialist provides excellent customer service and navigates a comprehensive computerized database to assist callers with finding the information and referral that is most accurate and appropriate. The I/R Specialists work at-home with equipment provided by UWCI. Initial training will be conducted onsite at the UWCI offices located at 1111 9th St. in Des Moines. The work schedule for this position is Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Starting pay is $16.00 per hour. This position will successfully complete initial and ongoing training for information search and services as well as peer counseling and crisis intervention techniques and other specialized training as required. The I/R Specialist records call data accurately and in a timely manner to facilitate quality reporting and analysis of community needs and trends. Diverse candidates are encouraged to apply!

Why choose United Way of Central Iowa? United Way of Central Iowa is an established and highly respected nonprofit in the Central Iowa area and the United Way Worldwide network. Employees at UWCI have a passion for the organization’s mission and community impact work and strive to create a positive, inclusive, and welcoming work environment. Our Core Values of Compassion, Integrity, Community Engagement, Responsiveness and Striving for Excellence is the foundation for how we do our work and to reach our aspiration to “Engage Community to Empower All.” In addition to a competitive salary and robust benefits package including health insurance, a dental and vision plan, 401(k) with match and paid life insurance, we offer the following:

  • Fostering an Equitable, Engaged, Empowered Community United Way of Central Iowa 7/30/21 2
  • Generous paid vacation plan, holidays, a personal holiday, and sick time
  • Paid volunteer time off
  • Convenient central Des Moines location with free parking
  • On-site fitness center
  • Tuition Assistance
  • Commitment to employee professional development
  • A commitment to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion practices
  • Fun monthly opportunities for employees to build camaraderie
  • Wellness initiatives

Essential Accountabilities Include (but not limited to):

  • Answer incoming phone calls, texts, and chats to provide information and referral service activities including intake, assessment and referral.
  • Through the use of a comprehensive computerized data base provide the caller with information and referral that is accurate, appropriate, and confidential.
  • Follow established procedures to record all incoming calls and requests. Maintain consistent data entry adherent to the guidelines set by the 211 Director.
  • Provide advocacy for clients when needed by interacting with clients and human service agencies working to resolve problems and provide information.
  • Successfully complete initial and ongoing training in the provision of information and referral service as well as peer counseling and crisis intervention techniques and other specialized training required for this position.
  • Attend regular in-service trainings and/or meetings as scheduled by the 211 Director
  • Communicates with the Database Contractor in a timely manner when there is an awareness of any changes or updates of community resources in the multi-county area.
  • Perform follow-up procedure for calls as deemed necessary to meet certification and accreditation requirements.
  • Participate in United Way of Central Iowa staff meetings, trainings, and activities as appropriate and available. Adheres to the UWCI Code of Ethics and Core Ideology.
  • Directed by the 211 Director to perform additional duties or tasks to support the United Way’s mission.


  • Customer Oriented: Demonstrates a level of desire to serve clients by focusing effort on meeting their needs, understanding their concerns, and seeking to build trust.
  • Communication, Oral: Demonstrates an ability to send verbal messages and listen to others' responses in order to convey information.
  • Communication, Written: Demonstrates a level of ability to write concise, clear letters, reports, articles, or emails, including proofing and editing.
  • Decision Making: Demonstrates an appropriate level of ability to evaluate information and select an effective and suitable course of action.
  • Accurate:Produces error-free work. Never needs assistance to meet quality objectives.
  • Initiative: Demonstrates a level of ability to act and take steps to solve or settle an issue.
  • Detail Oriented: Demonstrates an appropriate level of ability to pay meticulous attention to assigned tasks with little to no oversight.
  • Empathetic: Demonstrates a level of ability to identify with or be sensitive to the feelings and experiences of others without judgement.
  • Tactful: Demonstrates a high level of ability to show consideration and avoid giving offence in dealing with others.
  • Time Management: Demonstrates a high level of ability to effectively utilize available time for the completion of necessary job tasks.
  • Autonomy: Ability to complete assignments and follow directions with little or no oversight.


  • High school diploma or equivalent