Workforce

Federal HR officials say they're hindered by general schedule pay

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Federal agency chief human capital officers say the general schedule that covers civilian employee pay frequently hinders hiring for critical occupations like information technology and cybersecurity.

"Many agencies view the current structure of the General Schedule to be a considerable obstacle when competing with the private sector for new talent and retaining high-performing employees," the Office of Personnel Management stated in a summary of its Fiscal Year 2019 Human Capital Survey report published March 31.

According to OPM, 12 agencies are looking to implement new special rates for certain positions. The Department of Transportation wants to test new pay structures and flexibilities for mission-critical personnel at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, while Housing and Urban Development is drafting a policy proposal for OPM to review concerning alternative pay systems.

OPM said a study is in the works to "obtain market information and analyze the Federal Government's competitive posture in total compensation for civilian employees."

The agency plans to increase compensation options for certain occupations, initially focusing on economists, "with the potential to expand efforts to other occupations not served well by the General Schedule system."

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