GAO Offers Strategies on How OPM can Better Manage Feds

Outdated federal employment policies make it difficult for agencies to compete for talent, but a watchdog has solutions that could help address this challenge.

The strategies the Government Accountability Office highlighted in a report released April 29 include offering flexible scheduling, recruiting graduating students earlier in the school year and making work meaningful.

As the federal government evolves with the fast-changing nature of technology, workforce attitudes and demands change. Agencies need to home in on the knowledge and skills necessary to respond to today’s and tomorrow’s demands, GAO noted. For example, as artificial intelligence, robotics and automation becomes more common, federal employees will need to cultivate new skills and expertise to use these newer technologies.

With telework and virtual communications becoming more common, OPM needs to clarify guidance on options for developing supporting data for benefits and costs linked with agency telework programs. The agency already has a draft addressing that, but GAO said it will be key for OPM to finalize and provide that guidance to agencies.

All these approaches, plus the many others outlined in the report, could help agencies better manage today’s and tomorrow’s workforce, the watchdog said.

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