Insight By Econsys

Addressing Federal Agency Challenges through Performance Management

This content is sponsored by EconSys

The Federal Government is the largest employer in the United States, with more than two million full-time employees. Divided amongst dozens of agencies, sub agencies, and offices throughout the country, the HR specialists that organize and manage this workforce face a number of new and growing challenges.

That’s where performance management comes in. The right performance management platform acts as a centralized hub for the communication, monitoring, and personnel actions taken by federal agency HR departments. Some of the common issues that are addressed through these changes include:

  • Retirement – Since 2011, around 100,000 federal employees have filed for retirement each year, and the total number of federal employees eligible to apply for retirement is now 31% of the total workforce. While we haven’t seen the massive wave of retirements that were predicted 10-15 years ago, processing times have steadily increased, the time to hire is getting longer, and the risk of a spike in retirements is very real.
  • FEVS Results – Every year, nearly half a million federal employees share their input as part of the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, and the results are generally not good. Low to moderate engagement in most agencies and a low overall satisfaction score show that employees are not as excited or motivated as they once were, and little has changed in recent years.
  • Administrative Changes – Under the current administration, several major changes have been discussed, starting with OMB-17-22’s directives to streamline and optimize how agencies run, and including the August release of President Trump’s executive orders addressing streamlined personnel actions. While none of these have been fully implemented yet, they are impacting how agencies operate and how future performance management workflows should be setup.

As new changes come in, past issues persist and FEVS results continue to stall, agencies are looking for new solutions. A smarter, better structured performance management system is a great place to start.

What Modern Performance Management Offers Federal Agencies

By implementing a better set of performance management processes that are as flexible as modern agencies need, it is possible to address these challenges and make tangible improvements:

  • Supporting Leadership Development – Part of the performance cycle that gets pushed aside far too often is the identification and nurturing of individuals with strong leadership potential. Implementation of systems that support leadership development planning, support more robust, personalized training, and that focus on soft skills among younger employees is a great way to build a deeper bench of future leaders for America’s federal agencies.
  • Aligning Goals with Employees – One of the core reasons employee engagement is so low is the lack of communication between agency management, administrative leadership, and federal employees. Improved performance management processes help to align goals between employees and management in a way that shows them what they are working toward.
  • Improving Overall Efficiency – Modern federally-focused performance management software can help to reduce the large number of hours that HR specialists spend processing manual paperwork and forms. This increases time available to engage with employees, evaluate organizational issues, and improve performance metrics.

With a more efficient, flexible performance management solution, federal agencies can be better prepared for continuously shifting requirements from the current and future administrations, improve upon stagnating engagement metrics, and be ready to promote from within as retirement numbers increase.

About EconSys

We help federal and state agencies to improve their operational efficiency, make better data-driven decisions, and empower State and Federal Governments to improve the effectiveness and cost-efficiency of HR operations to manage the “Hire-to-Retire” lifecycle. From consulting and staffing services to operational and analytical software, we have continued to add innovative and cost-efficient solutions that foster a highly productive and fulfilled workforce for our federal and state clients since 1990.