Political leaders from both the White House and Congress are offering up ways to improve the Senior Executive Service. There’s the mundane — the White House is launching a candidate development program. And the punitive — legislation that would make it easier to fire SES members when things go wrong. Now in our special report, “Fixing the SES,” we ask: Is it actually broken? Jeri Buchholz is an SES member and chief human capital officer at NASA. On the Federal Drive with Tom Temin, she told Federal News Radio’s Emily Kopp that the SES has its faults but is essential to the government.
Does the Senior Executive Service need to be fixed? And if so, how? Federal News Radio is currently examining these questions in a four-part special report, “Fixing the SES.” Web Manager Julia Ziegler joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to relay some of your thoughts on it.
The SES has lost its luster in recent years, in part because of constrained program budgets, increased scrutiny from Congress, and a sense among members that political appointees are assuming more of the leadership responsibilities once reserved for them. In part two of our special report, Fixing the SES, five Senior Executive Service members tell Federal News Radio why they choose to stay in the service, and why they believe the SES may have its faults, but it’s not broken.
After a one year hiatus thanks to tight budgets, the Office of Personnel Management has reinstated the Presidential Rank Awards in all their glory. The program recognizes members of the Senior Executive Service for extraordinary service with cold, hard cash. Steve Shih is a deputy associate director for Senior Executive Services and Performance Management at OPM. He joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin with more on the awards’ return.
Members of the Senior Executives Service take heed: Not all reforms are bad, painful or even likely to occur, says Senior Correspondent Mike Causey.
Members of the Senior Executive Service have had a rough year or two. Now political leaders from both the White House and Congress offer up ways to improve the SES. There’s the mundane, such as the White House is launching a candidate development program. And the punitive — legislation that would make it easier to fire SES members when things go wrong. Today, Federal News Radio launches a special series called “Fixing the SES.” We’ll bring you the voices of those who know the system best — current and former SES members. We start with former acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel. He was an SES member before becoming a political appointee. He’s now an outside consultant. On the Federal Drive with Tom Temin, Werfel told reporter Emily Kopp that SES members are older and under more stress than ever before.
Fewer than half of the Senior Executive Service members who responded to an exclusive Federal News Radio online survey say they would join today. The survey results were even more dim for federal employees at the GS-15 and GS-14 ranks. In the first of our four-part special report, Fixing the SES, we examine how current senior execs feel about the SES, and what they believe is right and wrong with the service.
Sometimes, the secret to getting things done is as simple as including the word “reform” in your proposal, says Senior Correspondent Mike Causey.
Respect for federal agency leaders continues to fall. The last few Federal Employee Viewpoint Surveys say rank-and-file employees don’t respect their upper level leaders as much as they used to. Executive Core Qualifications are supposed to help senior executives maintain high leadership standards, but they might be too easy to follow. Bob Tobias, professor of Key Executive Leadership Programs at American University, is also a former member of the Internal Revenue Service Oversight Board. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose about ways to improve the Executive Core Qualifications to build better agency leaders.
A 1.3-percent pay raise, reforms to the Senior Executive Service and increased emphasis on employee feedback are just some of the initiatives proposed in President Barack Obama’s 2016 budget.