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Federal Employees News Digest : April 8, 2013
Phil Piemonte, Managing Editor E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org What's Inside44 April 8, 2013 • Vol. 62, No. 36 Employee satisfaction with leadership declining Federal employees' faith in agency lead- ership appears to be on the wane, according to a new report. The Partnership for Public Service last week released a "snapshot" slice of its annu- al "Best Places to Work in the Federal Government" report, which incorporates data from the latest Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey conducted by the Office of Personnel Management. The mini-report's title tells it all--- "Federal Leadership on the Decline." The authors of the new report scored and ranked leadership at federal agencies based on employees' responses to questions con- cerning their satisfaction with various aspects of leadership at their organizations. There were few surprises in the rela- tive rankings of the agencies, which fell into about the same order as the previ- ous year. The highest-ranked large agency was the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, which scored 68.1 points on a scale of 100 for effective leadership. Just below NASA were the Intelligence Community (63.1), State Department (59.5), Commerce Department (58.6), and Treasury Department (57.4). The lowest-ranked large agencies were the Departments of Agriculture and Labor, each with a score of only 50.7, followed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (47.5) and, pulling up the rear just as in the past, the Department of Homeland Security (45.7). Variation among medium-size and small agencies was, as usual, wider still. Among medium-size agencies, the top-ranked agency was the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (69.9), while at the bottom was the Broadcast Board of Governors (42.2). At small agencies, the Surface Transportation Board scored at the top (75.3), while the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative scored very low (35.7). The report is based on an analysis of the results of OPM's survey of more than 687,000 feds, conducted in 2012. In that survey, feds report their satisfactions--- and dissatisfactions---with the full range of workplace issues. The latest PPS break-out analysis focuses on leadership issues. First-time overall decline This year, unfortunately, 13 of 19 large agencies showed a decline in employees' ranking of their agency's leadership---the first overall decline in employee rankings of agency leadership since the survey results were first analyzed by PPS back in 2002. Overall, governmentwide satisfaction with leadership---in this case defined as satisfaction with upper-level leaders ("the heads of agencies, departments and their senior management teams")---went from a slight, general rise from 54.5 in 2010 to 54.9 in 2011, before falling to 52.8 in 2012. "The report shows the first decline ever. That is, for us the data started in 2003---and this is actually the first-ever downward trend in leadership," David Dye, a director at Deloitte Consulting, which co-authored the analysis, told FEND. "Maybe it's a cross- roads we're entering here---a tipping point. There's a lot of data here that suggests that half, or more, of the workforce is just not Shadow Government What do the legal problems of Pennsylvania groundhog Punxsutawney Phil have to do with the sequestration exercise going on in most fed- eral agencies? At first glance, not much. But upon closer examina- tion, plenty. Sort of ... First a little background: Phil is the nation's best-known weather-predicting (sometimes) rodent. He has his day in the sun once a year. In February. Just about everybody in his town, plus tons of tour- ists, turns out for the event. Tamer than most other groundhogs, Phil is accustomed to people. He lets the mayor pick him up, flip him up to where his belly is facing skyward, and he (Phil, not the mayor) isn't afraid of crowds. According to the brilliant PR ritual, if Phil sees his shadow on a certain day, we are in for six more weeks of winter. If he does not, as in if it is cloudy or raining, it means an early spring. If you buy that, then Phil (or the sun, or more likely the tradition) blew it this year. This year on Groundhog Day (Feb. 2), he didn't see his shadow and a cold, mis- erable northeastern portion of the United States heaved a sigh of relief. But March was cold. Very cold. With lots of snow. Phil got it wrong. It happens! So we did what Americans do? We sued. Actually an official in Ohio, a pros- INSIGHT BY MIKE CAUSEY continued on page 2 For more news...see Federal Daily at www.FederalDaily.com • STOCK Act poses danger 3 • USPS had little choice 4 • In Brief 5 • Informed Investor 7 • Federal Benefits Q&A 8 continued on page 3
April 1, 2013
April 15, 2013