The Federal Government’s workforce is the most critical ingredient to driving the success of its priority initiatives. We cannot focus on improvement in processes without a complementary focus on the people we rely on to do the work. Though changes to policy or law may ultimately be needed to address workforce and cultural challenges across government, we can and should take actions to maximize the impact of our workforce within the existing environment. We propose to:
- Create a Culture of Excellence and Engagement to Enable Higher Performance. We will foster a culture of excellence by using data-driven approaches to enhance management, performance, and innovation across the current Federal workforce. Specifically, we will focus on employee engagement (measured by employee views about their leaders, supervisors, and work experience), as multiple evaluations have demonstrated a strong correlation between employee engagement and an organization’s productivity. Agencies can now get access to this data for over 13,000 work-level units across the country (up from just a few hundred units four years ago). This level of specificity in data will provide agency managers with actionable information to target areas where improvement is needed most and where there are management best practices that can provide a model for success.
- Build a World-Class Federal Management Team Starting with the Senior Executive Service (SES). To ensure a first-class Federal workforce long-term, we will invest in our civil service leadership by taking administrative actions that result in a broader experience and skill base across the Federal Executive Corps. This includes addressing the “pain points” in the hiring process and enhancing training and accountability over the terms of their service.
- Enable Agencies to Hire the Best Talent from All Segments of Society. We will collaborate with Federal stakeholders and labor groups to ensure a balanced strategic approach to improving hiring outcomes. In the short term, we will identify and address the erosion of the original flexibilities of Title 5. In the long term, we will work closely with labor unions and use demonstration projects and/or legislation and regulatory changes to ensure that our hiring processes attract and retain America’s talent. We will measure the success of this effort by assessing manager satisfaction with the quality of both applicants and their hires after six months on the job.