Death Only Way To Get Rid Of Poor-Performing Federal Employees
I used to cover federal agency management for a newspaper and once did a study where I found that from 1998 to 2003, eight Cabinet-level departments had not fired a single employee for poor performance. Now USA Today reports:
Death — rather than poor performance, misconduct or layoffs — is the primary threat to job security at the Environmental Protection Agency, the Small Business Administration, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Office of Management and Budget and a dozen other federal operations.
The federal government fired 0.55% of its workers in the budget year that ended Sept. 30 — 11,668 employees in its 2.1 million workforce. Research shows that the private sector fires about 3% of workers annually for poor performance, says John Palguta, former research chief at the federal Merit Systems Protection Board, which handles federal firing disputes.
Word to the wise: get a job in the federal government. One of the reasons the firing rates are so low is the power of federal employee unions. I've spoken to dozens upon dozens of managers who didn't want to lose years of their life defending an adverse employee action from a zealous federal union. So what would they do? Well, they'd promote the problem employee out of their department.
Also 2.1 million employees? And that doesn't count postal workers, the military or seasonal employees. Sheesh.