Shows & Panels
- The 2014 Big Picture on Cyber Security
- AFCEA Answers
- Ask the CIO
- Connected Government
- Consolidating Mission-critical Systems
- Constituent Servicing
- Continuous Monitoring: Tools and Techniques for Trustworthy Government IT
- The Data Privacy Imperative: Safeguarding Sensitive Data
- Eliminating the Pitfalls: Steps to Virtualization in Government
- Federal Executive Forum
- Federal Tech Talk
- Government Cloud Brokerage: Who, What, When, Where, Why?
- Government Mobility
- Mission-critical Apps in the Cloud
- Mobile Device Management
- The Modern Federal Threat Landscape
- The Path from Legacy Systems
- Understanding the Intersection of Customer Service and Security in the Cloud
Shows & Panels
Term limits for the SES?
Thursday - 2/20/2014, 2:00am EST
Under the latest proposal, the director of Veterans Affairs would be the first cabinet officer with the authority to fold, staple or mutilate top career civil servants with minimal appeal rights. He could also bump SESers (with average salaries of between $120,749 to $181,500) down the GS ladder where they could take major pay cuts.
Normally a plan like this, in a congressional election year, wouldn't get much traction. More noise than actual bang. But...
What bothers many in the SES is that one of the bills has been introduced by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). He's on the short-list of possible 2016 Republican presidential candidates. The other is Rep. Jeff Miller (R- Fla.).
On our Your Turn radio show yesterday, Senior Executives Association President Carol Bonosaro said the bills are "a solution seeking a problem." She said there are already procedures for handling problem executives, and that if the plan was adopted in the VA it could spread to Defense, Treasury and other agencies. You can listen to her comments by clicking here.
Wednesday's column on the SES proposal prompted a number readers to comment. Some were outraged at what one of them said is "more of the GOP's anti-bureaucrat, anti-government mantra."
One reader-listener said he's known some SESers who needed disciplinary action. He said it might be wise to put term limits on SES appointees. He writes:
I do not disagree that SES employees need to be reminded that they are not gods even though there are some that don't act that way. But think of the process, the only way they leave is through retirement and then it is usually their last post (however long it is, where they want to retire). When reorganizations happen no one loses a job, their job title changes and they may move. When a position is created, there seems to already be the perfect person for the job already on board so no one new gets in the club. I watched a person without a degree move into an SES position in three moves and 10 years. They were so bad that they were basically fired from their first position, but had a friend who was an SES to move them along.
That said, yes we need people in those positions to make the tough calls and basically be in the civilian military service. In the military, you make a bad call and things happen to you personally. Make a multimillion dollar mistake at SES-level and the lower level employees have to live with it, a town may have to live with it or even the United States may have to live with it. Your good friend of 10 or 15 years at the agency has to do the punishment: Are they going to fire the SES person or end their career? No, not unless the press or a congressman knows what has happened. The SES person is already at the top, so if they cannot move up or down why worry about making bad calls, which brings them back to playing god.
So the question is: Should the SES position be time-limited to say eight years to avoid all these pitfalls? The president can run the country in four years. An SES should be able to run their agency for eight. — Seen Too Much
NEARLY USELESS FACTOID
Compiled by Jack Moore
Men who use the pronoun "whom" in online dating ads are contacted by women 31 percent more frequently.
MORE FROM FEDERAL NEWS RADIO
Nominations now open for 2014 Causey Awards
Federal News Radio's 5th Annual Causey Awards seek to recognize and honor the good works of people who challenged the status quo and changed, for the better, human capital management. Nominate someone today for his or her outstanding achievements and important human capital/human resources contributions. While we're looking for people who made a difference in the HR world, they don't necessarily have to work in an HR role. In the past, we've honored CIOs, a chief of staff, and an inspector general, in addition to human resources professionals, all for their contributions in the HR arena.
Behind the lies, damned lies and headlines
Jeff Neal, former chief human capital officer at the Department of Homeland Security, says you shouldn't believe everything you read -- especially when it comes to federal employees.
Federal managers: Forget everything you think you know about hiring A recent report from the Merit Systems Protection Board reveals that cursory assessments of training and experience are often unreliable indicators of how employees will actually fare on the job. MPSB's John Ford tells the Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Emily Kopp what hiring managers can do to up their hiring game. Plus, Sam Davis, vice president of AMA Enterprise Government Solutions, discusses how hiring flexibilities will boost agencies' efforts to hire the long-term unemployed.