How to Improve your Scores on the Federal Employees Viewpoint Survey

Thought you might be interested in this article I wrote regarding how to improve your scores on the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey:

The results of the latest government-wide Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey have been released. Over 687,000 federal employees completed the FEVS survey, and according to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (PDF):

The 2012 FEVS indicates the Federal workforce remains resilient – hardworking, motivated and mission-focused even amidst the many challenges facing Government today.

The Federal workforce remains mission-focused and hardworking

Nearly all Federal employees report that their work is important, they are constantly looking for ways to do their job better, and they are willing to put in the extra effort to get the job done. This finding is consistent across the 82 Federal agencies that participated in the 2012 FEVS.

Eight out of 10 employees like the work they do, understand how their work relates to the agency’s goals and priorities, and rate the overall quality of the work done by their work unit as high.

Employee Engagement remains strong

Employee Engagement scores are relatively consistent with the 2010 levels. Approximately two out of three employees report positive conditions for engagement still exist in their agencies.

Federal employees’ satisfaction with their jobs, pay and organizations are areas of continued risk

This year employee responses were down two percentage points when recommending their organization as a good place to work (67 percent) and down three percentage points with their satisfaction with their job (68 percent) and organization (59 percent).

Satisfaction with pay (59 percent) had the greatest impact on the Global Satisfaction scores, as it decreased by four percentage points. This is pay satisfaction’s lowest level since the 2004 survey administration.

Two out of 10 employees feel pay raises are related to their job performance.

Three out of 10 employees feel that their performance is recognized in a meaningful way and that promotions are based on merit.

Though some areas trended downward, results vary by agency and subcomponents within agencies. The FEVS presents an opportunity for agency leadership to make improvements.

While the Survey indicates that several key areas are trending downward, it also states that there are plenty of opportunities for improvement, which is true.

A Less Rosy Picture

Another less optimistic way to look at the FEVS report is to note the following:

  • About 33% of the employees do not believe that positive conditions for engagement exist in their agencies.
  • About 33% of the employees do not believe their organization is a good place to work.
  • 32% of the employees are dissatisfied with their jobs.
  • 41% of the employees are not satisfied with their organization.

When you extrapolate these numbers across a government-wide workforce of about 1.6 million Federal employees, those numbers are actually pretty scary. For example, the results suggest that over 640,000 Federal employees are not satisfied with their agencies.

Human Capital Assessment and Accountability

A different way to look at this is to examine the results of The Human Capital Assessment and Accountability Framework index. The HCAAF index uses a set of metrics to evaluate Federal agencies’ human capital management. The HCAAF looks at four key areas: Leadership & Knowledge Management, Results-Oriented Performance Culture, Talent Management, and Job Satisfaction. The FEVS is one of the tools used to develop these overall scores.

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