Every day more than 4 million Americans go to work throughout the country and the world in service to the American people. From fighting fires to responding to the pandemic, from ensuring our national and cyber security to providing medical care to veterans, Federal employees are at the center of ensuring an equitable, effective, and accountable Federal government that delivers results for all.
As the dedicated public servants that make up our Federal workforce are committed to the American people, the Biden-Harris Administration is fully committed to supporting, strengthening, and empowering the Federal workforce, including by providing them the resources they need to carry out their missions.
As the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Deputy Director for Management and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Director, we lead the Administration’s efforts to strengthen our Federal workforce. We know the importance of getting this right, not just for our dedicated, hard-working civil servants, but for you, the American people, and we will use all the tools at our disposal to deliver on the President’s commitment that the Federal government should be the model employer.
In November 2021, the Administration launched the President’s Management Agenda, outlining three priorities that started first and foremost with Strengthening and Empowering the Federal Workforce, recognizing that a high-performing organization is grounded in its people.
The President’s FY23 budget supports the PMA’s vision and goals by focusing resources on specific workforce initiatives that are part of a multi-year strategy. Dedicated new investments include –
- Providing a meaningful 4.6% pay raise to Federal employees to further position the Federal government as a competitive employer and to honor the Federal workforce’s important work;
- Ensuring that all Federal employees earn a minimum of $15 an hour. We know this advances equity and provides a myriad of other benefits, from recruitment to retention to increased productivity. It’s also the right thing to do;
- Strengthening agency internship programs with funding to support hiring at least 35,000 interns in FY 2023, representing a significant increase from prior years;
- Expanding the Federal presence, capacity, and recruitment efforts in communities outside of the Washington, D.C. Metro area – by strengthening Federal Executive Boards (FEBs) across the Nation. The Budget provides for $10 million in funding for the FEB network to assist agencies in strategic and collaborative efforts to recruit new talent through a new program office and interagency structure that will replace the current ad hoc funding approach;
- Additional funding for agency talent teams to focus on targeted recruitment and rigorous assessments to bring in top talent;
- Improving hiring by scaling innovative processes to integrate subject matter experts into the hiring process and providing funding for select agencies to share high quality competitive hiring announcements with other agencies. This would create an enhanced experience for applicants and hiring managers that will be better able to connect the best candidates to the jobs we have available across multiple agencies.
OPM is critical to the success of each of these initiatives. With strong committed partners in OMB and across the Administration, OPM is poised to build on its role as a strategic leader for Federal human capital management and policy as it serves as a partner to agencies across a range of personnel and workforce infrastructure needs. Through its strategic plan, OPM will focus on targeted efforts that span a range of critical elements within the agency including people, resources, IT, and customer service in order to be of greatest service to the American people. Specific areas of focus include –
- Positioning the Federal Government as a model employer;
- Driving a data-driven approach to recruitment, assessment, and hiring strategies that strengthen and support diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility across the Federal Government;
- Improving data collection, use, and sharing to support agencies in promoting a more equitable, engaged, and empowered workforce that champions unionized voices;
- Supporting Federal agencies by attracting early career talent;
- Equipping Federal workers with the ability to build new skills;
- Developing a strategic vision for the Federal Government to improve the future of work informed by the lessons learned during the pandemic.
Together, each of these levers – the PMA, the President’s budget, and a strong OPM shepherding innovative workforce policies – shape a strategic, multi-year plan to address critical workforce needs across government. There is much work to be done to meet and exceed each of these goals to support the Federal workforce and ensure the Federal government is a model employer. It will take the dedication and collaboration of stakeholders both inside and outside government, as well as from the Federal workforce itself, to ensure we make progress toward this bigger vision and strategy. It is the Administration’s honor to support the Federal workforce by building the infrastructure they deserve in order to succeed – after all, they are directly involved in keeping our country safe, our economy strong, and delivering on equitable and excellent service to the American people.