Job Rotation Programs

Home Forums Leadership and Management Job Rotation Programs

This topic contains 18 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Steve Ressler 8 years ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #86466

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    There is a strong demand within our agency for a rotation program – as a result we are trying to figure out what is the best strategy for setting up a job rotation program. There’s a great discussion at https://www.govloop.com/forum/topics/does-your-agency-allow regarding external rotations but I have not found anything that covers both internal and external rotations.

    I know Bureau of the Public Debt has a rotation program they use for internal folks and all SES CDP programs include a rotations of some sort.

    My questions are: 1) If you set up a rotation program what was your goal going into the program? (e.g. preserve institutional knowledge, more well rounded employees, etc.). 2) What unanticipated issues came up during the program that you had to solve? (e.g. performance plan impacts, scheduling, consistency, etc.). 3) Lessons learned?

    Thanks for sharing! As we work to implement our program I’ll share what we learn and come across.

    Regards,
    Tom

  • #86502

    Steve Ressler
    Keymaster

    I know IRS used to have a rotation program for executives (I know as I was the son of one and had to move around a lot). The idea was that it would create more well rounded employees, get people out of their comfort zones, and learn from different locations. I think an obvious issue that came up is that a lot of people didn’t want to move at certain points, certain locations became more popular than others, etc. But I think the pros outweigh the cons.

    Some other ideas:
    -Would be good if people could help select and match to cities/jobs like doctors do. One person’s dream job is another’s lame job.
    -Perhaps job swap programs or boards.

  • #86500

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    I have heard IRS has a great rotation and SES opportunity sharing program as well. Thanks for sharing the personal perspective of how that can impact the family as well. Hadn’t really thought of that overtly.

    I like the idea of a job swap program or board. I’ll bring that up at our discussion next week when we talk about our strategic plan and how to implement our goals.

    Thanks Steve!

  • #86498

    Steve Ressler
    Keymaster

    Also check out rotation programs more geared towards new hires – pmf, GAO pdp, HHS emerging leader

  • #86496

    While I don’t have first-hand knowledge of job rotation programs, I wanted to comment. Your questions are thorough. I would think the first key would be the establishment of the program’s goals; shaping and molding it from there would be the next step. Other essential questions to ask would be, “How do we evaluate the program’s effectiveness?”, “What are we doing to provide mentoring/coaching along the way?” and “How do we bring together participants to solicit feedback in an ongoing manner?” I look forward to seeing what you develop. Let me know if I may be of further service to you as you think things through.

  • #86494

    Susan Porter Beffel
    Participant

    We have tried a one-to-one job rotation switch for mid-levels for a year, and found that interest was limited. Two small succesful groups and one year when a few drop outs caused the whole exchange to fall apart.

    Would love to talk with those who have successful programs!

  • #86492

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Thanks Susan,
    Any idea if the year long commitment was an issue? We had not considered year long commitments up to this point but it’s an idea to consider. We’ve been throwing out ideas like 4 or 6 month rotations to be in line with the SES CDP requirements.

    Thanks for sharing!
    Tom

  • #86490

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Hi Jay,
    Thanks for sharing. Yes, we will be developing the goals/expectations along with metrics for success if we can identify some, we already have a service-wide mentoring program that we will insinuate into the process. Had not thought about soliciting feedback along the way, great idea and should be in alignment with the metrics we select.

    Thanks again!
    Tom

  • #86488

    Susan Porter Beffel
    Participant

    Thanks for the suggestions on evaluation — will be including pre and post surveys and group mentoring in our proposal, thanks to your input.

    The one year length is favored by our management as it does give the participant 52 weeks of experience.

    Our problem is getting supervisors to let them go — any ideas on how to provide backfill?

  • #86486

    Susan Porter Beffel
    Participant

    Do you have contact info for the organizations that you know that have rotational programs?

  • #86484

    Another aspect to the last question… depending on how big the program is, it would be beneficial for the participants to get together periodically to socialize (a lunch, an event, etc.) and compare notes, not for the purpose of evaluation, but for the purpose of sharing a common experience. I believe this will build relationships and, in turn, strengthen the organization. Would be willing to discuss further if you would like.

  • #86482

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Jay,
    I agree. Comparing notes and sharing ideas on common problems is extremely helpful. Took a class yesterday where the instructor used the concept of “feed-forward”. It was almost like speed dating for feedback.

    The idea being you, in a group setting:
    1) first pick something that you (personal or profession) that you would like to work on for your development.
    2) Talk to as many people as possible (one at a time) in a short time span – say 10 minutes.
    3) Ask each person for suggestions on the issue you picked for development
    4) Write down their suggestions.

    There are only two key guidelines:
    1) The person providing the suggestions cannot talk about the past. Only future suggestions are allowed.
    2) The person asking for feed-forward can only say two words in response. “Thank you”.

    I thought it worked really well.

  • #86480

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Let me check with them before I give out their contact info. Might take me a while to get it but I will message you either way.
    Tom

  • #86478

    Susan Porter Beffel
    Participant

    thanks!

  • #86476

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Susan,
    I totally missed this comment and I knew you had added one yesterday. Came back and poof – my eyes saw it this time… Sorry about that.

    Another aspect we are introducing into our SES CDP program for the first time is ‘executive coaching’. I’m anxious to see how it goes, if you are set on a 52 week rotation that might be a worthy item to add in if you have the funds or can use a certified coach from another agency.

    The backfill – I advocate using a version of the pay-it-forward concept. An opportunity for someone begets an opportunity for someone else lower in the organization. If you have several layers of development programs you can hopefully, as part of succession planning, identify high potentials lower down in the organization who would benefit greatly by back filling.

    Takes organization, time, and further extends the mentoring needed but it pays off in the long term from my perspective.

  • #86474

    Susan Porter Beffel
    Participant

    Thanks. Just checked your site — you must have been in the EIG program the year ahead of me. Who was your group leader? Sue

  • #86472

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Frank Reeder. I then co-coached with him for a couple of groups.

    Who was yours?

  • #86470

    Tricia
    Participant

    We don’t have one where I’m at, but I believe them to be beneficial. Once upon a time I worked for an aerospace company, and they did this with machinist – so they knew all aspects, and worked directly with engineers to get the understanding/background/collaboration.

    I would think this type of program would be excellent for Managers to learn about different programs within their agency.

  • #86468

    Tom Vannoy
    Participant

    Tricia,
    Thanks for the support. We’re still trying to determine the best design for a rotational program – and also the best time to implement one with everything we have going on.

    Tom

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.