12:46 am, May 30, 2015

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  • Above article
    The article appears to make the claim that the category rating examining approach is "new." Not so. It was established as a governmentwide alternative examining methodology as part of the Homeland Security Act legislation in November 2002, and OPM issued implementing regulations to this effect in June 2003. It has since been available for agencies to use, at their option, as an alternative to the preexisting "rule of 3" examining methodology, which stems from the Veterans Preference act of 1944, as amended. It's not clear why OPM chose - through the executive memorandum issued at OPM's request on 5/11/10 - to prohibit agencies from using the long standing "rule of 3" option, requiring instead that they use category ranking solely. This is problematic, because each examining approach has pros and cons to be taken into account in agency external staffing operations. In certain contexts, category rating might be optimal; in others the "rule of 3" methodology would get the nod. However, now agencies have only a single "one size fts all" examining approach, which removes needed flexibility in choosing the most efficent examining methodology on a case by case basis. Why and how this unfortunate narrowing of examining options is supposed to foster "hiring reform" has never been clearly explained.
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