Workforce Agility Design Case Studies
The Department of Labor and the Office of Personnel Management have provided two case studies on the US government's goal for a more agile workforce.
Department of Labor — Implement an Enterprise-Wide Shared Services Model
- The Department of Labor's administrative functions were decentralized.
- This structure resulted in duplication, fragmentation, inconsistent implementation of siloed administrative functions (e.g., space management, procurement, HR services, personnel, physical security and IT), and uneven customer service.
- In centralizing the administrative functions of the Department of Labor, the following actions were taken.
- Procurement was realigned under one shared service, which standardized and centrally managed procurement policies and processes under the Business Operations department of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Administration & Management (OASAM) Business Operations Center.
- Space Management functions were merged into OASAM to increase efficiency in space utilization, ensure across department conformity, and reduce costs.
- An enterprise-wide Physical Access Control System along with the centralization of the personnel security operations was created.
Reasons for adoption
- The department wanted to be able to quickly adapt to changing business conditions by realigning resources, adjusting procedures, or changing policies as necessary.
Efficiency & Effectiveness
- The department wanted to achieve the desired results across the whole department with an optimal allocation of resources.
- This goal was accomplished by defining strategy and goals, ensuring regulatory compliance and efficient structure, empowering the leadership, an agile and multi-skilled workforce, defined services, streamlined processes, targeted tools, and technology, with a proactive communication and engagement culture.
Customer Service First
- The reorganization was centered around prioritizing customer needs and leveraging expertise to understand, anticipate, and satisfy customer demands.
- The department achieved a realized square footage reduction for FY 18 of 93,143 rentable square feet. The plan is to further reduce by another 22,000 square feet by the end of 2019.
- The IT department moved three applications to the cloud in 2018 and another three in 2019.
- The facility department conducted a workload assessment to determine the appropriate staffing level for a reorganized personnel security function.
Office of Personnel Management (OPM) — U.S. government's HR Department
- The biggest challenge OPM was struggling with was that federal human capital management was a "rigid, rules-oriented system."
- Currently, agencies find it almost impossible to manage access human capital data as a result of "duplicative, siloed human resources information technology systems that are unable to interface and exchange data."
- Hiring new people, especially in critical positions, was a long, unwieldy process.
- Technology positions were underpaid in relation to the private sector, and the length of time to hire resulted in the loss of interested applicants.
- The policy was changed to give agency heads direct-hire authority for critical positions in technology, cybersecurity, and data science roles.
- Department of Defense (DOD), Cyber Excepted Service, gave the DOD the authority to onboard faster and to pay employees a salary more in line with the private sector.
- OPM trained federal hiring managers on efficient and effective hiring and on evaluating job candidates' qualifications.
- OPM is involved in reskilling employees for new and changing mission-critical roles.
- The department reviewed employee digital-record standards to simplify the processing of transfers and onboarding of new hires.
- The OPM implemented employee digital-record standards that simplified the processing of transfers and onboarding of new hires.
Reason for Adoption
- The agency sought to improve career pathways programs "to bring new talent into government," and to do better at screening out unqualified applicants.
- The goal was to help workers whose jobs may have been eliminated or changed by automation to learn new critical skills and ease their movement to new roles.
- OPM wanted to adopt private-sector practices by supporting internal mobility paths, apprenticeships, and continuous learning.
- Through FY 2019, OPM released more than 1,600 data standards. Approved by a Data Review Board, these standards governed data related to "payroll, time and attendance, transfer, separations, and retirement."
- In Q4, 2019, the government implemented the Employee Digital Record data standards and associated application program interfaces (APIs). This standardization provided the capacity for Federal employees to transfer between agencies using paperless processing.
- Average time to hire decreased from 111 days to 44 days.