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OPM Mission, Goals and Priorities

OPM's mission is to lead and serve the Federal Government in enterprise human resources management by delivering policies and services to achieve a trusted effective civilian workforce. Strategic Plan FY 2018-2022

Our MISSION: We lead and serve the Federal Government in enterprise human resources management by delivering policies and services to achieve a trusted effective civilian workforce.

Transform hiring, pay, and benefits across the Federal Government to attract and retain the best civilian workforce.

Lead the establishment and modernization of human capital information technology and data management systems and solutions

Improve integration and communication of OPM services to Federal agencies to meet emerging needs

Optimize agency performance

Strategic Goals

Transform Hiring, Pay, and Benefits across the Federal Government to Attract and Retain the Best Civilian Workforce

A well-functioning 21st century Government requires a modern personnel system that allows Federal agencies to attract and retain talented applicants in Federal service. Many features and requirements of today’s Federal personnel system were designed nearly 40 years ago for work and a workforce that was very different from the enormous diversity and complexity of today’s Federal agencies, missions, and workforces. Because of this, there is broad consensus that key components of the current civil service system do not fully meet today’s needs.

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As the Federal Government’s human resources agency, OPM has a unique leadership role in designing and promulgating regulations, policy, and guidance covering all aspects of the employee lifecycle from hire to retire. OPM is also responsible for administering Government-wide retirement and benefits programs that help make the Federal Government a competitive and attractive employer. In addition, OPM helps safeguard the integrity and trustworthiness of the Federal workforce by delivering efficient and effective background investigations and overseeing certain parts of the vetting processes they serve. In each of these areas of responsibility, OPM has a responsibility to drive modernization and to deliver highly effective services and programs that enable Federal agencies to meet their human capital needs today and into the future.

Lead the Establishment and Modernization of Human Capital Information Technology and Data Management Systems and Solutions

OPM develops Government-wide human resources data standards and has the statutory responsibility to collect and analyze human capital data in Federal agencies to help drive human capital management policy.

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OPM is committed to improving the capabilities of data analysts and researchers throughout OPM, and eventually Government, to advance evidence-based human capital management policy, as well as grow Government-wide and agency-specific workforce planning and forecasting abilities.

OPM will modernize human capital standards for basic administrative functions. This will provide agencies the opportunity to automate many processes, complete transactions more efficiently, and improve other human capital systems, such as hiring. Initially, OPM will focus on the Federal Government’s human resources information technology (HR IT) infrastructure. This means agencies and OPM will have more secure, interoperable technology applications for improved management of the human resources lifecycle to include Talent Acquisition (recruitment and hiring), Talent Development (learning), Employee Performance Management, Compensation and Benefits (payroll, time and attendance, and benefits), and Separation and Retirement.

Further, while the employee lifecycle is defined by statute and understood as a practice, the Federal Government finds it difficult to manage the end-to-end employee data lifecycle due to duplicative HR IT systems across agencies that are unable to interface and exchange data. This is primarily due to inconsistencies and incompatibility of cross-government legacy HR IT data exchange capabilities, inconsistent application of existing data standards, unstructured data transformation, and data security and privacy concerns. OPM is in the process of establishing a secure employee digital record, with near real time updates that will contain all relevant employee data. This will enable the advancement of evidence-based human capital management policy and provide access to lifecycle data for transaction processing. It will also provide the data needed for strategic decision making and further enable the flexibility for agencies to acquire Software as a Service solutions in the cloud that leverage the latest advancements in technology.

Improve Integration and Communication of OPM Services to Federal Agencies to Meet Emerging Needs

OPM is the central agency for human resources management for the Federal Government. This leadership role necessitates the efficient and effective design and promulgation of human capital regulations and policies and the evaluation of the effectiveness of human capital management in the Federal Government.

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OPM is also the only Federal agency specifically authorized by Congress to provide human resources services to other Federal agencies through its internal staff and private sector partners, where appropriate. As a result of having this unique authority, OPM must develop and implement human capital products and services that help the Federal community execute on and comply with human resources regulations and policies and must deliver strong communication between its service function and its broad mission of efficient and effective strategic human capital management.

To achieve greater synergy within the organization and drive human capital performance across the Government, OPM will fundamentally shift the collaboration between its policy, service, and evaluation functions. This new “collaborative framework” will require the agency to take a more holistic approach to solving Federal human capital management challenges by engaging in a deliberate examination of the human capital policy, services and evaluation aspects of these challenges and developing integrated (and appropriate) strategies to address them.

OPM recognizes the need to build greater awareness among the Federal community and other key stakeholders of the scope and benefits of the agency’s human capital management capabilities and programs. Building on a re-energized mission to lead and serve, OPM will also seize opportunities to proactively engage the Federal human capital community, program leaders, private industry, and academia on emerging trends in the human capital space and how best to potentially operationalize those trends within the Federal human resources environment.

As a result, Federal agency leaders may experience more cohesive human capital management strategies and thought leadership; regulations and policies that are designed for better execution within their agencies; products and services (including those delivered through private sector partners) that address their most urgent human capital needs; and audits and evaluations that inform and drive performance. OPM also expects that greater synergy within its functional areas will create greater consistency in advice provided to agencies and will lead to a more favorable impression of the agency.

Optimize Agency Performance

OPM aims to optimize agency performance through initiatives to enhance decision-making and accountability and targeted actions to improve support services and retirement operations.

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Improving information sharing and collaboration among senior leadership often improves decision-making and optimizes agency operations, preventing duplicative efforts or inefficient use of resources at the enterprise level. In alignment with Government-wide plans to reform the Federal Government, OPM will also work to maximize employee performance, and address challenges in dealing with poor performers. To enable OPM to achieve all of its goals, the agency plans to enhance performance in the mission support services components so that agency core mission components can realize their fullest potential in service delivery to OPM stakeholders, customers, and the American taxpayer.

Priority Goals

Agency Priority Goals (APGs) reflect the top performance improvement priorities of agency leadership and the Administration. APGs reflect measurable results that leadership wants to accomplish over a two-year period, advancing progress toward longer-term strategic goals and objectives in the agency’s strategic plan.

For the FY 2018-2019 cycle, OPM developed one APG in an area where agency leadership would like to drive progress and monitor implementation of actions in the agency reform plan required by OMB memo M-17-22.

  • Enable Federal Employees to Seamlessly Transfer from One Agency to another, with Paperless Processing

    By September 30, 2019, OPM will ensure implementation of Employee Digital Record data standards and associated application program interfaces (APIs) that demonstrate an initial capability toward Federal employees being able to transfer between agencies using paperless processing.

    The agency also developed a second APG focused on improving the hiring process.

  • Improve the Hiring Proces

    Strengthen the capabilities of Federal HR professionals by relaunching a delegating examining (DE) certification program that creates a level standard for all HR delegated examiners. By September 30, 2019, at least 43 percent of delegated examiners will complete the updated certification program.

The Federal Government uses a three-pronged approach to manage APGs: 1) public goal setting, 2) data-driven performance review meetings with agency leadership no less than quarterly, and 3) quarterly public updates on For additional information on APGs, please refer to

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