OPM Makes Strides in Addressing GAO Recommendations But More Work Remains

The congressional watchdog has warned the Office of Personnel Management of a host of outstanding issues that could hinder the agency’s management of the federal workforce.

Released April 10, the Government Accountability Office’s report outlines 18 priority open recommendations for OPM that address workforce challenges and improving the federal hiring process, among other issues. GAO said it identified 16 open priority recommendations for OPM in March 2018, but the agency has implemented only three of them.

“In a number of areas, OPM has taken promising steps in response to these recommendations, although additional actions are needed,” GAO Comptroller General Gene Dodaro wrote to OPM Acting Director Margaret Weichert in a letter accompanying the report.

OPM has begun to address workforce challenges and update training on security assessment standards, but more work is needed, Dodaro said. This month, GAO found another handful of areas that need to be tackled, including addressing mission critical skills gaps, making hiring and special pay authorities more effective and dealing with employee misconduct.

Dodoaro also highlighted in his letter that governmentwide, 77 percent of GAO’s recommendations made four years ago were implemented -- however, OPM’s recommendation implementation rate was about 38 percent.

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