Feds test new OPM Performance Management System

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) released more information last week on the government employee performance management system pilot program slated to launch this spring. OPM plans to start training managers with the new system by March or April of this year, OPM Deputy Chief of Staff Justin Johnson said.

The GEAR - goals, engagement, accountability and results - system attempts to align employee and agency performance, OPM said.

However, some questioned the utility of the program.

"I don't see anything different here when it comes to performance management," said John Gage, president of the American Federation of Government Employees, at a monthly meeting for the National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations. "Especially with some of these agencies - [the Department of Housing and Urban Development] HUD, [the Department of Energy] DOE - it's going to be a big year for these agencies. Laying on this type of human resources program . . . it just doesn't excite me."

Gage said he does not plan to release a recommendation to work with the pilot program.

Several agencies involved in the pilot, including DOE, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and HUD, gave presentations at the meeting that summarized the attempts to reform performance management in their agencies.

HUD Chief Human Capital Officer Karen Cole said Senior Executive Service (SES) members considered the idea of withholding "outstanding" ranking eligibility if the agency did not meet certain criteria.

"We know there are severe problems in terms of how we're managing performance and linking that performance to agency goals," Cole said. "The [HUD] SES corps took that to heart and said, ‘OK, we need to lead this effort using ourselves,' essentially as a guinea pig."

DHS, the Department of Veterans Affairs and other agencies participating in the pilot are still in the development phase for their programs.

Posted in General News

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