OPM has recently announced that it will be accessing the excepted service staffing activities of the agencies to ensure that all the regulations are being followed. The emphasis would be on doing off-site work by using technology. This assessment would require all the agencies to cooperate in the best way they can.
Expectations of the OPM
The OPM expects the agencies in different ways. Sometimes the agencies would just need to provide some written policy guideline with regard to the excepted service staffing activities. On other occasions, the agencies may need to take part in the interviews and surveys. The agencies would also be required to offering access to all the records and case files pertaining to the excepted service hiring actions.
The Mapping Criteria
OPM has insisted that they would be accessing excepted service staffing activities in order to judge its compliance with the laws, merit system principles and regulations. Its effectiveness would also be analyzed. The law they want adhered to is the Title 5 of the U.S. Code; the general body of civil service law.
The key agency would also be focused on working off-site as much as possible. It will be making the most of the automated staffing systems, virtual conferencing, electronic surveys and employee personnel records. All these things were pointed out via a memo sent to all the agencies.
When Will the Accessing Begin?
OPM is currently focused on evaluating the data pertaining to its enterprise human resources integration system. The accessing of the excepted service staffing activities will begin only after the current analysis is wrapped up. OPM would shortlist the agencies to be covered and then contact the agencies to share more details of the accessing process.
Increasing Number of Excepted Services
OPM data has revealed that the agencies are making more of external hires via excepted service authorities when compared to hiring through competitive examinations. This trend has been ongoing over the last 10 years. The recent figures are also backing up this fact. In 2015, around 120,000 excepted service appointments were made. The number of competitive exam appointments during the same time period was only 113,000.
Exceptions to the Study
The study conducted by OPM would not include the hiring’s done as per the Pathways Program that hires students and fresh graduates as the number of excepted service appointments made in it are very low.