Workforce

OPM's new guide to reading employee viewpoint data

employee data (kentoh/Shutterstock.com) 

The Office of Personnel Management released its Employee Engagement Toolkit for Supervisors on Oct. 21. In a memo circulated by Associate Director of Employee Services Mark D. Reinhold, the toolkit outlines several strategies for how agency supervisors can begin to implement the feedback from the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey into their workplaces.

The toolkit includes four separate areas workplace managers can specifically address, including interpreting the results of the FEVS, soliciting feedback from employees on how best to address workplace issues and implementing practices that address the issues raised in the FEVS, such as employee-supervisor relations and lack of support when facing workplace challenges. In the memo, Reinhold wrote, "Assessing improvement over time and adjusting in response to assessments has proven to be particularly tough for agencies."

The four documents in the toolkit provide guidance to federal managers on how to review data, understand feedback, collaborate inside a workgroup on improving in a certain focus area and drive employee engagement through leadership.

Guidance on reviewing data suggests grouping FEVS survey responses into categories to understand employee opinions about specific topics, such as work-life balance, teamwork and how performance ratings work. The document on responding to survey results offers different approaches for agencies and components that earned positive responses from employees and those that scored poorly. Managers are urged to drive a single focus area for immediate improvement and to survey employees about what that area might be. Finally, OPM offers managers guidance on how to adopt an "employee-focused mindset" to help drill in on problem areas and collaborate with employees to find solutions.

The 2019 FEVS opened on May 13 and was conducted in two waves. Results from the 2019 survey have yet to be released publicly.

About the Author

Lia Russell is a staff writer and associate editor at FCW covering the federal workforce. Before joining FCW, she worked as a freelance labor reporter in San Francisco for outlets such SF Weekly, The American Prospect and The Baffler. Russell graduated with a bachelor's degree from Bard College.

Contact Lia at lrussell@fcw.com and follow her on Twitter at @LiaOffLeash.


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