In an effort to further trim the fat from the federal budget, the White House is capping the amount of money available for employee awards, according to the Washington Post. The new policy limits the total amount of money available for performance awards, not how much can be awarded to an individual. Specifically, the award money for SES level workers cannot exceed 5% of the agency’s aggregate SES salaries, and the award money for workers in all other positions cannot exceed 1% of the agency’s aggregate salaries.
The memo indicates the dissatisfaction administration officials have with the current awards process: “In many cases, awards are broadly and inconsistently allocated, and some Federal employees have come to expect awards as part of their compensation. At the same time, recent survey results show that a large number of both agency managers and employees do not perceive the current employee performance management/award systems to be fair or accurately reflect differences in performance levels.”
For employees in non-senior positions, awards are already quite small, so this new policy may not have a huge impact on the budget. Additionally, if the awards system is unfair or inconsistent, it may not be encouraging federal employees to work harder. Taken from another perspective, do you expect to receive an end-of-year bonus or award? Is it an important performance incentive for government employees?
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