Hank Q1-2018

See the whole issue

Meet Your National Agreement: Change Is Here, Be Prepared

Infographic featuring image of a tree

As health care evolves, so do our skills

In the early 2000s, Blockbuster ruled the video rental roost.

Now it’s all but gone.

Blockbuster didn’t adapt to customer needs and technology trends. Netflix did.

Kaiser Permanente and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions recognize that if you don’t change with the times, you can get left behind.

The National Agreement addresses the importance of preparing for the future in partnership; section 1D of the agreement covers workforce planning and development.

Under the 2015 agreement, two educational trusts — Ben Hudnall Memorial Trust and SEIU UHW-West & Joint Employer Education Fund — received additional funding to provide workers represented by a coalition union with a variety of services, and training and education programs. Joint work on addressing experience barriers, which have sometimes prevented newly trained workers from being hired into KP jobs, is also under way.

The agreement details the structure for coordinating workforce planning and development. A national team aligns, integrates and coordinates workforce development and training efforts in partnership with the regions. Each region has a workforce planning and development committee chaired by labor and management co-leads.

The five key components of this work are:

  • workforce planning and development
  • career development
  • education and training
  • redeployment
  • retention and recruitment

“The goal is to prepare union workers for changes to jobs,” says LeAnda Russell, the coalition’s national coordinator for job innovation. “We support the lifelong learning and career development of our workers.”

It’s paying off. Use of the educational trusts has increased to record levels.

Russell encourages employees to keep learning to build the job skills needed as health care evolves. In other words — don’t hit the rewind button. It’s time to press play.

“Technology is here,” Russell says. “Don’t be afraid.”


Affordability/Money - Color Take Action: Learn About Tuition Reimbursement

Do you want to continue your education? Earn a certificate? Get a college degree?

Tuition reimbursement is a powerful tool you can use to build your skills.

The 2015 National Agreement between Kaiser Permanente and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions increased tuition reimbursement — up to $3,000 year for most employees — for successfully completing eligible courses.

Visit and click on “Receive tuition reimbursement” to create a profile and then get personalized details, apply online, submit documents and check your status.

18 people found this helpful. Was it helpful to you? YesNo