OPM’s Bailey to take on DHS’ morale, engagement challenges

The Homeland Security Department is getting a new chief human capital officer.

Angela Bailey is moving to DHS from the Office of Personnel Management. She has spent the last two years as OPM’s chief operating officer and has worked at the agency since 2007.

“It will be a great opportunity to take all of the wonderful OPM knowledge I’ve had the privilege of gaining over the past eight years, and the network of talented colleagues I’ve had the pleasure of working with, to one of the largest non-defense agencies within the federal government,” Bailey wrote in a note to colleagues, which was obtained by Federal News Radio.

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Angela Bailey is moving to DHS from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM)

Bailey’s last day at OPM is Jan. 8.

She will replace Catherine Emerson, who has been DHS’ CHCO since August 2011. Emerson told Federal News Radio that she is taking a new role at the Justice Department’s Civil Division.

“I was fortunate to be part of a tremendously dedicated, smart, and resourceful circle of senior leaders and colleagues — from recruitment and hiring to employee services to the Office of the director. And I’m quite proud of the things we accomplished together — from overall design and implementation of hiring policy reform throughout the federal government, to the dogged determination we had to refine and improve our internal processes,” Bailey wrote. “This past year was especially tough both personally and professionally, and what I’ve come to realize is that unexpected things are always going to happen in life. And the only control we have is how we choose to handle them. We survived all that was thrown at us by using courage, humor and grace, and for that I will be forever grateful.”

FCW first reported Bailey’s move to DHS.

Bailey moves from one troubled agency to another.

DHS has struggled to improve its Employee Viewpoint Survey scores and Best Places to Work rankings over the last decade.

In the 2015 EVS report, DHS received a 53 rating, well below the governmentwide total of 64. DHS’ grade is down from 60 in 2011.

DHS didn’t fare much better in the Best Places to Work rankings from the Partnership for Public Service.

Russ Deyo, DHS’ undersecretary for management, said in November that one of his four top priorities for 2016 is around recruitment and hiring, and employee engagement.

DHS, once again, was at the bottom of the list of large agencies, with a score of 43.1 — compared to NASA’s score of 76.1.

Bailey is no stranger to tough jobs. She served as OPM’s CHCO and worked on several high-profile initiatives, including President Barack Obama’s Veterans Employment Initiative and the governmentwide strategic workforce planning, recruitment and hiring, pay and leave, performance management, employee development, executive resources efforts.

In addition to her time at OPM, Bailey also worked as the director of human resources for the Defense Contract Management Agency, and she started her career in 1981 as a clerk typist at the Social Security Administration.