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2013 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey EMPLOYEES INFLUENCING CHANGE


Since 2002, OPM has called on Federal employees to provide their candid opinions on all aspects of their Federal employment - their supervisors, their work experience, their agency and their senior leaders. This year, 376,577 employees provided their input to the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (FEVS) to influence change at their agencies.

The 2013 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey results present two very clear conclusions.

First, the Federal workforce remains resilient in the face of historic challenges. Over 90 percent continue to be willing to put in extra effort, are constantly looking for ways to do their job better, and feel their work is important. Their levels of engagement are generally holding steady despite declining satisfaction.

Second, despite the tremendous strengths and dedication shown by Federal employees, the 2013 responses demonstrate a significant drop in employee satisfaction and continue last year's declines across the majority of questions, which are cause for concern. In addition to continued decreases in satisfaction with pay, one of the biggest drops this year was whether employees had sufficient resources needed to get their jobs done. This drop contributed to fewer employees recommending their organizations as good places to work. Any employer seeing this meaningful level of decline would be very concerned.

Factors such as an unprecedented 3-year pay freeze, automatic reductions from the sequester that included furloughs for hundreds of thousands of employees, and reductions in training and other areas are clearly taking their toll on the Federal workforce - and this survey was administered prior to the recent Government shutdown. The survey results serve as an important warning about the long-term consequences of the sequestration and budget uncertainty. Without a more predictable and responsible budget situation, we risk losing our most talented employees, as well as hurting our ability to recruit top talent for the future.

Finally, in addition to providing information on broad trends, the FEVS is also an important management tool that allows leaders and managers to receive feedback from their employees and to take actions to increase satisfaction and engagement with the ultimate goal of improving services to the American public. This year, agencies will receive even more granular survey results at manager levels that will allow them to identify challenges and to take specific actions.

Together, Federal employees at all levels face challenges, uncertainties, and changes. Nonetheless, we strongly believe that our agencies are good places to work and that our employees will continue to be dedicated to doing their work, serving the public in the best and most effective way.

I thank all the employees who took the time to make their voices heard and their opinions known. In doing so, they have expressed an ongoing belief in the future of a dedicated and effective Federal workforce.

Katherine Archuleta