OPM revisits governmentwide hiring pools

Thursday - 9/1/2011, 1:10pm EDT

By Emily Kopp
Reporter
Federal News Radio

The Office of Personnel Management is making another attempt at pooling job applicant data so that several agencies can access it at the same time. Candidates would have to submit only one job application to be considered for positions at multiple agencies. The shared registers are only for entry-level budget analyst and information technology specialist positions in about 20 locations.

"Shared registers are an innovative tool to help federal agencies address some critical staffing challenges," said OPM Director John Berry in a press release. "OPM is evolving this tool to help agencies and the high quality applicants they need to connect quickly and efficiently." Agencies that are hiring for these positions must request a list of applicants from OPM by Sept. 30. OPM then will send them information about the "best qualified" eligible candidates.

"I believe you will be pleased with the quality of applicants referred and that they will meet the critical hiring need you identified," Berry wrote in a memo to chief human capital officers. The agencies will have 30 days to review the list. OPM said the deadline is intended to keep the process timely for applicants.

OPM first established applicant pools in 2009. A year later, OPM and the Chief Human Capital Officer Council concluded that shared registers work best when they are used to find candidates for certain entry-level positions in particular locations. While the database of budget analyst candidates is currently available, the IT specialist database is not ready yet. But OPM said agencies can now send requests for candidates for either position.

Agencies that use the database cannot conduct separate searches for the same positions.

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