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Data, Analysis & Documentation Employee Surveys

2008 Employee Survey Results
U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM)

1. Interpretation of Results:

OPM uses employee surveys to gather information about employee perceptions of the leadership and management practices that contribute to overall performance and employee satisfaction in areas such as work environment; rewards and recognition; opportunities for professional development and growth; and opportunity to contribute to achieving organizational mission. The 2008 Federal Human Capital Survey (FHCS) results have been reviewed and analyzed to gauge employee perceptions on how well the Agency is meeting its goal of strengthening, developing and rewarding its employees.

The results of the initial 2004 FHCS pointed to a number of potential areas where employee satisfaction could be improved. To obtain more in-depth information regarding these issues, focus groups were conducted with Agency employees nationwide. Employees were asked to identify the most critical issues to be addressed and provide recommendations for improvement. A report was presented to the OPM Director and senior leadership and action plans were developed and implemented to address the most critical issues raised. As a result of these efforts, the results of the 2006 FHCS reflected noticeable improvement; however, the results also showed that some areas might benefit from continued attention. Survey results were shared with all employees and new action plans were created to ensure that areas still in need of improvement would be addressed.

The 2008 FHCS results continued to reflect a trend of increased positive results, with the Agency ranked in the top ten of most improved agencies. Overall, 75 percent of the survey questions showed an increase in positive responses from the initial 2004 survey results. Areas showing the highest positive response rates include: importance of the work performed (93%); quality of work done by the work group (87.7%); use of information technology (87.4%); understanding of how work relates to the Agency's goals and priorities (87.1%); accountability for achieving results (87%); people cooperating to get the job done (86.6%); liking one's work (82.7%); and supervisors supporting the need to balance work and other life issues (79.7%).

Areas showing highest overall increase in positive response rates since the initial 2004 FHCS include: managers communicate goals and priorities (+ 16.4%); managers review and evaluate programs toward meeting goals and objectives (+ 16%); leaders maintain high standards of honesty and integrity (+ 14.2%); employee satisfaction with the organization (+ 13%); employees are rewarded for providing high quality products and services (+ 12%); and steps are taken to deal with poor performers (+ 11%). While progress has been significant, these areas still warrant additional attention and we will continue our efforts to improve employee perceptions in these areas.

The overall results reflect the positive steps the Agency has taken to address the most critical issues and concerns raised by employees and managers. Specific efforts included the development of a new Strategic and Operational Plan that was communicated to all employees, and the goals of which were built into every manager's performance plan and cascaded down to every OPM employee. Improved communication strategies were initiated across the Agency through the use of all hands meetings, brown bag lunches with the Director, and all employee messages. Emphasis was placed on ensuring the training needs of all employees were assessed with a focus on creating avenues for employees to obtain needed or desired training within budgetary constraints. Supervisory and managerial training was also provided with an emphasis on performance management.

We plan to continue the focus on developing our managers and supervisors to ensure they have the capacity to carry out their human capital responsibilities by providing classroom and online training opportunities. We will sponsor quarterly supervisory forums to ensure supervisors are provided with the most current information on Agency policies and procedures to assist them in carrying out their supervisory responsibilities. New guidance has been developed regarding the Agency's incentive awards program to share organizational best practices and provide managers and supervisors information on types of awards available to recognize accomplishments of their employees. Continued improved communication strategies are critical to ensuring that all employees are provided information on a timely basis and are provided the opportunity to make a positive impact on their work environment.

2. How the survey was conducted:

The survey was conducted online from August 1, 2008, through September 26, 2008.

3. Description of sample:

All full-time permanent OPM employees were surveyed.

4. Survey items and response choices:

See below.

5. Number of employee surveyed, number responded, and representativeness of respondents:

See below.

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(Survey Administration Period 8/1/08 to 9/26/08)

Items with * are AES prescribed items.

OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT
2008 FEDERAL HUMAN CAPITAL SURVEY RESULTS
Question Strongly Agree Agree Neither Agree Nor Disagree Disagree Strongly Disagree "Do Not Know / No Basis to Judge" Percent Positive Total
*1. The people I work with cooperate to get the job done. N 1,049 1,496 219 131 37 NA   2,932
% 35.7 50.9 7.7 4.5 1.3 NA 86.6 100
*2. I am given a real opportunity to improve my skills in my organization. N 464 1,227 618 442 181 NA   2,932
% 15.7 41.8 21.2 15.0 6.4 NA 57.4 100
3. I have enough information to do my job well. N 424 1,610 443 370 85 NA   2,932
% 14.6 54.9 14.9 12.6 3.0 NA 69.5 100
4. I feel encouraged to come up with new and better ways of doing things. N 536 1,072 622 493 209 NA   2,932
% 18.0 36.6 21.3 16.9 7.2 NA 54.6 100
*5. My work gives me a feeling of personal accomplishment. N 809 1,315 437 252 119 NA   2,932
% 27.5 44.7 15.0 8.6 4.2 NA 72.2 100
*6. I like the kind of work I do. N 1,105 1,332 324 121 50 NA   2,932
% 37.5 45. 11. 4.3 1.8 NA 82.7 100
*7. I have trust and confidence in my supervisor. N 951 1,082 441 264 194 NA   2,932
% 31.8 37.0 15.4 9.1 6.7 NA 68.8 100
8. I recommend my organization as a good place to work. N 624 1,199 608 311 190 NA   2,932
% 20.7 40.5 21.3 10.7 6.8 NA 61.2 100

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Question Very Good Good Fair Poor Very Poor "Do Not Know / No Basis to Judge" Percent Positive Total
*9. Overall, how good a job do you feel is being done by your immediate supervisor/team leader? N 1,124 980 510 181 137 NA   2,932
% 38.0 33.4 17.6 6.2 4.8 NA 71.4 100
10. How would you rate the overall quality of work done by your work group? N 1,300 1,274 298 46 14 NA   2,932
% 44.4 43.3 10.2 1.6 0.5 NA 87.7 100

Question Strongly Agree Agree Neither Agree Nor Disagree Disagree Strongly Disagree "Do Not Know / No Basis to Judge" Percent Positive Total
*11. The workforce has the job-relevant knowledge and skills necessary to accomplish organizational goals. N 403 1,687 474 262 71 35   2,932
% 13.7 57.3 16.4 8.9 2.5 1.2 71.0 100
*12. My supervisor supports my need to balance work and other life issues. N 1,219 1,126 314 141 111 21   2,932
% 41.2 38.6 10.9 4.8 3.8 0.8 79.7 100
13. Supervisors/team leaders in my work unit provide employees with the opportunities to demonstrate their leadership skills. N 538 1,211 639 341 169 34   2,932
% 18.2 41.1 21.9 11.8 5.9 1.2 59.2 100
*14. My work unit is able to recruit people with the right skills. N 268 1,095 818 375 181 195   2,932
% 8.9 36.9 28.2 13.0 6.4 6.6 45.8 100
15. The skill level in my work unit has improved in the past year. N 383 1,166 829 303 104 147   2,932
% 12.8 39.3 28.6 10.7 3.8 4.9 52.1 100
16. I have sufficient resources (for example, people, materials, budget) to get my job done. N 364 1,355 437 511 255 10   2,932
% 12.2 45.9 14.9 17.7 8.9 0.4 58.1 100
*17. My workload is reasonable. N 277 1,512 429 459 252 3   2,932
% 9.4 51.3 14.7 15.7 8.7 0.1 60.7 100
*18. My talents are used well in the workplace. N 440 1,331 541 391 218 11   2,932
% 14.9 45.0 18.6 13.3 7.7 0.4 59.9 100
*19. I know how my work relates to the agency's goals and priorities. N 914 1,641 246 73 44 14   2,932
% 30.9 56.1 8.4 2.5 1.6 0.5 87.1 100
*20. The work I do is important. N 1,683 1,046 141 42 14 6   2,932
% 57.3 35.7 4.8 1.5 0.5 0.2 93.0 100
*21. Physical conditions (for example, noise level, temperature, lighting, cleanliness in the workplace) allow employees to perform their jobs well. N 635 1,272 486 317 173 49   2,932
% 21.6 43.7 16.3 10.9 5.9 1.6 65.3 100
*22. Promotions in my work unit are based on merit. N 303 912 742 410 326 239   2,932
% 10.0 30.7 25.7 14.0 11.3 8.2 40.8 100
*23. In my work unit, steps are taken to deal with a poor performer who cannot or will not improve. N 217 920 696 414 289 396   2,932
% 7.2 31.1 24.2 14.2 10.0 13.4 38.3 100
*24. Employees have a feeling of personal empowerment with respect to work processes. N 221 1,088 771 472 251 129   2,932
% 7.4 36.8 26. 16.0 8.6 4.5 44.2 100
25. Employees are rewarded for providing high quality products and services to customers. N 315 1,062 670 492 262 131   2,932
% 10.6 36.0 23.0 16.8 9.1 4.5 46.7 100
*26. Creativity and innovation are rewarded. N 228 732 929 561 296 186   2,932
% 7.6 24.8 31.7 19.2 10.2 6.4 32.4 100
*27. Pay raises depend on how well employees perform their jobs. N 212 914 776 520 283 227   2,932
% 7.1 30.7 26.8 17.7 9.8 7.8 37.8 100
28. Awards in my work unit depend on how well employees perform their jobs. N 296 1,028 659 402 257 290   2,932
% 9.9 34.9 22.8 13.7 9.0 9.7 44.8 100
*29. In my work unit, differences in performance are recognized in a meaningful way. N 165 790 871 561 267 278   2,932
% 5.5 26.7 30.0 19.1 9.2 9.4 32.3 100
*30. My performance appraisal is a fair reflection of my performance. N 491 1,411 435 332 206 57   2,932
% 16.9 47.7 14.9 11.4 7.1 1.9 64.6 100
*31. Discussions with my supervisor/team leader about my performance are worthwhile. N 522 1,334 570 289 182 35   2,932
% 17.7 45.2 19.7 9.7 6.4 1.3 62.9 100
*32. In my most recent performance appraisal, I understood what I had to do to be rated at different performance levels (for example, Fully Successful, Outstanding). N 573 1,531 364 275 125 64   2,932
% 19.5 52.1 12.5 9.3 4.3 2.2 71.7 100
33. I am held accountable for achieving results. N 842 1,715 275 52 21 27   2,932
% 28.3 58.7 9.4 1.9 0.8 1.0 87.0 100
34. Supervisors/team leaders in my work unit are committed to a workforce representative of all segments of society. N 477 1,220 649 154 103 329   2,932
% 15.8 41.4 22.6 5.4 3.8 11.1 57.2 100
35. Policies and programs promote diversity in the workplace (for example, recruiting minorities and women, training in awareness of diversity issues, mentoring). N 401 1,059 756 187 115 414   2,932
% 13.3 35.9 26.1 6.6 4.2 13.8 49.2 100
*36. Managers/supervisors/team leaders work well with employees of different backgrounds. N 566 1,293 553 177 103 240   2,932
% 18.7 43.9 19.4 6.2 3.7 8.0 62.7 100
*37. I have a high level of respect for my organization's senior leaders. N 459 1,095 715 358 280 25   2,932
% 15.4 37.4 24.6 12.1 9.7 0.8 52.8 100
*38. In my organization, leaders generate high levels of motivation and commitment in the workforce. N 285 937 817 546 291 56   2,932
% 9.4 31.9 28.1 18.5 10.1 2.0 41.3 100
39. My organization's leaders maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. N 490 1,116 670 264 188 204   2,932
% 16.2 37.7 23.4 9.1 6.6 6.8 54.0 100
*40. Managers communicate the goals and priorities of the organization. N 497 1,599 477 219 114 26   2,932
% 16.7 54.3 16.5 7.6 4.0 0.9 71.0 100
*41. Managers review and evaluate the organization's progress toward meeting its goals and objectives. N 501 1,510 521 134 68 198   2,932
% 16.8 51.3 18.2 4.7 2.4 6.7 68.1 100
*42. Employees are protected from health and safety hazards on the job. N 472 1,420 559 219 114 148   2,932
% 15.9 48.5 19.2 7.5 3.9 5.0 64.4 100
*43. My organization has prepared employees for potential security threats. N 458 1,672 460 182 86 74   2,932
% 15.9 57.1 15.6 6.1 2.9 2.5 72.9 100
44. Complaints, disputes or grievances are resolved fairly in my work unit. N 219 736 753 285 185 754   2,932
% 7.3 25.2 25.9 9.8 6.4 25.4 32.5 100
45. Arbitrary action, personal favoritism and coercion for partisan political purposes are not tolerated. N 455 942 654 270 226 385   2,932
% 15.0 32.0 22.8 9.2 7.8 13.1 47.1 100
46. Prohibited Personnel Practices (for example, illegally discriminating for or against any employee/applicant, obstructing a person's right to compete for employment, knowingly violating veterans' preference requirements) are not tolerate N 604 1,066 523 136 112 491   2,932
% 19.9 36.3 18.3 4.7 4.1 16.7 56.2 100
47. I can disclose a suspected violation of any law, rule or regulation without fear of reprisal. N 434 996 651 231 202 418   2,932
% 14.3 33.5 22.9 7.9 7.0 14.4 47.8 100
48. Supervisors/team leaders provide employees with constructive suggestions to improve their job performance. N 428 1,492 539 300 128 45   2,932
% 14.4 50.5 18.7 10.4 4.5 1.5 64.9 100
*49. Supervisors/team leaders in my work unit support employee development. N 537 1,414 538 242 147 54   2,932
% 18.0 47.9 18.8 8.3 5.2 1.9 65.9 100
50. Employees have electronic access to learning and training programs readily available at their desk. N 297 1,279 580 390 140 246   2,932
% 10.1 43.6 19.8 13.3 4.9 8.3 53.6 100
*51. My training needs are assessed. N 241 1,211 738 468 177 97   2,932
% 8.1 41.1 25.4 16.0 6.2 3.3 49.2 100
52. Managers promote communication among different work units (for example, about projects, goals, needed resources). N 318 1,179 702 360 189 184   2,932
% 10.7 40.0 24.2 12.4 6.5 6.2 50.7 100
53. Employees in my work unit share job knowledge with each other. N 819 1,433 306 234 121 19   2,932
% 27.5 48.9 10.6 8.0 4.3 0.7 76.4 100
54. Employees use information technology (for example, intranet, shared networks) to perform work. N 968 1,602 199 81 34 48   2,932
% 32.6 54.9 7.0 2.7 1.2 1.7 87.4 100
*55. How satisfied are you with your involvement in decisions that affect your work? N 352 1,061 785 530 204 NA   2,932
% 11.9 36.1 26.9 18.0 7.1 NA 48.0 100
*56. How satisfied are you with the information you receive from management on what's going on in your organization? N 359 1,216 690 469 198 NA   2,932
% 12.0 41.3 23.8 16.0 6.9 NA 53.3 100
*57. How satisfied are you with the recognition you receive for doing a good job? N 385 1,092 721 486 248 NA   2,932
% 13.0 37.2 24.6 16.6 8.7 NA 50.2 100
*58. How satisfied are you with the policies and practices of your senior leaders? N 271 1,042 926 455 238 NA   2,932
% 9.0 35.3 32.1 15.4 8.2 NA 44.2 100
*59. How satisfied are you with your opportunity to get a better job in your organization? N 244 818 1,024 506 340 NA   2,932
% 8.0 27.6 35.1 17.4 11.9 NA 35.6 100
*60. How satisfied are you with the training you receive for your present job? N 291 1,257 723 449 212 NA   2,932
% 9.9 42.7 24.8 15.3 7.4 NA 52.6 100
*61. Considering everything, how satisfied are you with your job? N 650 1,344 503 299 136 NA   2,932
% 21.8 45.7 17.4 10.3 4.8 NA 67.5 100
*62. Considering everything, how satisfied are you with your pay? N 598 1,489 408 317 120 NA   2,932
% 19.9 50.5 14.2 11.2 4.2 NA 70.4 100
63. Considering everything, how satisfied are you with your organization? N 438 1,361 577 364 192 NA   2,932
% 14.6 46.1 20.1 12.5 6.7 NA 60.7 100
64. How satisfied are you with retirement benefits? N 518 1,317 453 204 59 381   2,932
% 17.6 45.0 15.7 6.9 2.1 12.8 62.6 100
65. How satisfied are you with health insurance benefits? N 526 1,450 394 273 64 225   2,932
% 18.1 49.8 13.5 9.1 2.1 7.4 67.9 100
66. How satisfied are you with life insurance benefits? N 421 1,509 463 111 34 394   2,932
% 14.5 51.6 15.8 3.7 1.1 13.2 66.0 100
67. How satisfied are you with long term care insurance benefits? N 181 597 626 100 40 1,388   2,932
% 6.1 20.2 21.4 3.3 1.3 47.6 26.3 100
68. How satisfied are you with the flexible spending account (FSA) program? N 317 585 569 37 14 1,410   2,932
% 10.5 19.9 19.5 1.3 0.5 48.3 30.4 100
69. How satisfied are you with paid vacation time? N 1,047 1,573 205 90 17 NA   2,932
% 35.5 53.8 7.1 3.0 0.6 NA 89.3 100
70. How satisfied are you with paid leave for illness (for example, personal), including family care situations (for example, childbirth/adoption or eldercare)? N 976 1,479 282 132 63 NA   2,932
% 33.1 50.7 9.7 4.5 2.1 NA 83.8 100
71. How satisfied are you with child care subsidies? N 62 164 491 46 22 2,147   2,932
% 2.2 5.6 16.7 1.6 0.7 73.1 7.8 100
72. How satisfied are you with work/life programs (for example, health and wellness, employee assistance, eldercare, and support groups)? N 138 514 533 127 47 1,573   2,932
% 4.9 17.6 18.2 4.2 1.6 53.5 22.5 100
73. How satisfied are you with telework/telecommuting? N 698 793 382 220 270 569   2,932
% 23.9 27.0 13.2 7.4 8.8 19.7 50.9 100
74. How satisfied are you with alternative work schedules? N 985 1,055 291 81 73 447   2,932
% 33.9 36.0 9.8 2.7 2.4 15.2 69.9 100

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(Survey Administration Period 8/1/08 to 9/26/08)

Items with * are AES prescribed items.  Percentages for demographic items are not weighted.

OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT
2008 FEDERAL HUMAN CAPITAL SURVEY RESULTS
Question Response Number Percent
75. Where do you work? Headquarters1,06436.3
Field 1,868 63.7
Total 2,932 100
*76. What is your supervisory status? Non-Supervisor 2,317 79.0
Team Leader 246 8.4
Supervisor 242 8.3
Manager 90 3.1
Executive 37 1.3
Total 2,932 100
*77. Are you: Male 1,219 41.6
Female 1,713 58.4
Total 2,932 100
*78. Are you Hispanic or Latino? Yes 160 5.5
No 2,772 94.5
Total 2,932 100
*79. Please select the racial category or categories with which you most closely identify (mark as many as apply.) American Indian or Alaska Native 20 0.7
Asian 60 2.1
Black or African American 579 20.3
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 23 0.8
White 2,103 73.9
Two or more races 62 2.2
Total 2,847 100
80. What is your age group? 25 and under 68 2.3
26-29 195 6.7
30-39 489 16.7
40-49 882 30.1
50-59 1,042 35.5
60 or older 256 8.7
Total 2,932 100
81. What is your pay category/grade? Federal Wage System 9 0.3
GS 1-6 162 5.5
GS 7-12 1,860 63.4
GS 13-15 860 29.3
SES 34 1.2
Senior Leader (SL) or Scientific or Professional (ST) 1 0.0
Other 6 0.2
Total 2,932 100
82. How long have you been with the Federal Government (excluding military service)? Less than 1 year 31 1.1
1 to 3 years 473 16.1
4 to 5 years 198 6.8
6 to 10 years 410 14.0
11 to 14 years 164 5.6
15 to 20 years 412 14.1
More than 20 years 1,244 42.4
Total 2,932 100
83. How long have you been with your current agency (for example, Department of Justice, Environmental Protection Agency)? Less than 1 year 62 2.1
1 to 3 years 1,026 35.0
4 to 5 years 464 15.8
6 to 10 years 420 14.3
11 to 20 years 395 13.5
More than 20 years 565 19.3
Total 2,932 100
84. Are you considering leaving your organization within the next year, and if so, why? No 2,047 69.8
Yes, to retire 152 5.2
Yes, to take another job within the Federal Government 606 20.7
Yes, to take another job outside the Federal Government 41 1.4
Yes, other 86 2.9
Total 2,932 100
85. I am planning to retire: Within one year 91 3.1
Between one and three years 324 11.1
Between three and five years 326 11.1
Five or more years 2,191 74.7
Total 2,932 100

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