Federal employees will have their say

Federal Register notice on employee surveys

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Federal agencies that aren’t conducting employee surveys every year will soon be required to do so. Regulations being drafted specify that survey results must not only be published online but that the surveys include specific questions.

Details of the draft regulations appear in today’s Federal Register. Agency officials and others have until Oct. 17 to comment on them before the Office of Personnel Management issues final regulations.

The notice states that the purpose behind the new survey requirement is to assess leadership and management practices that contribute to agency performance and to measure employee satisfaction with leadership policies and practices, the work environment, rewards and recognition for processional accomplishment, and opportunities for professional development, for example.

Statutory authority for the new requirement was included in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004.

That law requires agencies to publish the survey results on their Web sites, “unless the head of the agency determines that doing so would jeopardize or negatively impact national security,” the OPM notice states.

The draft regulations also state that OPM will analyze the survey data using new database systems designed to assess how well agency leaders and supervisors are managing employees.

OPM officials expect to issue final survey regulations in early 2006.

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