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At DHS, humans aren't 'capital'

The Office of Personnel Management last week released its annual Federal Human Capital Survey and, not surprisingly, small agencies did better than larger agencies.

But DHS did... well, terrible.

Slate.com noted:

Out of 36 federal agencies surveyed, the Department of Homeland Security ranked dead last on job satisfaction; dead last on being "results-oriented"; second to last on "leadership and knowledge management"; and among the bottom five on "talent management."

DHS officials have responded to the report.

Deputy DHS Secretary and Chief Operating Officer Michael Jackson called the results a "clear and jolting message" that management needs to work with employees to improve job satisfaction.

"What you said shows that DHS is not where any of us want to be," Jackson wrote in the memo. He noted that DHS ranked low in terms of management and leadership as well as being recognized for its work.

And the horrible term 'human capital' is going to be verboten at DHS, which will instead refer to people as employees or members of DHS,' according to Slate.com.

Enter a spinmeister. DHS Deputy Secretary Michael P. Jackson (who, along with his boss, Secretary Michael Chertoff, received low marks on "supervision, management and leadership") sent out an e-mail assuring the team that DHS will act on a list of suggestions that was developed and presented last month by a task force of something called the Homeland Security Advisory Council. The first personnel-related recommendation in the task force report is to "empower employees by dropping the buzzword [sic] 'Human Capital' and replacing it with 'employees' or 'members' of DHS."

Posted by Christopher Dorobek on Feb 05, 2007 at 12:16 PM


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