Which agencies have the happiest IT workers?
- By Bianca Spinosa
- Jul 19, 2016
The Partnership for Public Service's deep dive into the 2015 federal job satisfaction data shows some bright spots for IT, human resources and contract specialists.
IT professionals at the Social Security Administration reported being the most satisfied at work, with an index score of 71.4 out of 100, well above the 58.1 average for all federal employees. NASA came in second with 69.7. IT workers at six other agencies -- Justice, Commerce, Treasury, Labor, Interior and State -- reported being happier in their jobs than the average federal employee.
Feds' overall job satisfaction in 2015 improved for the first time in four years. Despite the high scores at some agencies, however, the average score for IT and cybersecurity professionals was 56.2, nearly two points below the governmentwide score.
Findings are based on data from the Office of Personnel Management's Federal Employee Viewpoint survey, which includes input from more than 421,000 people from April through June of 2015. The Partnership also held a workshop in May 2016 with HR, IT and contract specialists across the federal government.
The report found the three main factors influencing job satisfaction in those fields are: serving as an advisor, strategic partner, and team member in the agency; having a creative and innovative culture; and investing in learning opportunities to help employees feel connected to the agency's mission.
Many participants in the May 2016 workshop said they often feel "disconnected from the big picture." The report advised agencies to include IT specialists in cross-functional teams and project planning discussions.
IT employees have the lowest "Best Places to Work" scores when it comes to training and development. Only 43.5 percent reported satisfaction with the training they received for their job, and just 47.1 percent believe their training needs are assessed.
"Several employees said that if they had the opportunity to learn their organization's culture during onboarding, it would have helped them integrate more easily into their jobs," the report stated.
Bianca Spinosa is an Editorial Fellow at FCW.
Spinosa covers a variety of federal technology news for FCW including workforce development, women in tech, and the intersection of start-ups and agencies. Prior to joining FCW, she was a TV journalist for more than six years, reporting local news in Virginia, Kentucky, and North Carolina. Spinosa is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Writing at George Mason University, where she also teaches composition. She earned her B.A. from the University of Virginia.
Click here for previous articles by Spinosa, or connect with her on Twitter: @BSpinosa.