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Performance appraisal for the Senior Executive Service (SES) is changing. New OPM regulations, effective November 13, 2000, aim to "help agencies hold their senior executives accountable by: reinforcing the link between performance management and strategic planning; requiring agencies to use balanced measures in evaluating senior executive performance; and increasing agency flexibility to tailor performance management systems to their unique mission requirements and organizational climate."
The revised regulations were a direct outcome of our Draft Framework for Improving the Senior Executive Service, circulated in 1998 to gather stakeholder views on preparing the SES for the leadership challenges of the new century. Discussions with executives and stakeholders indicated:
Two other factors influenced the development of the regulations:
When the new regulations were proposed, the general reaction was positive. Most of the questions and comments related to balanced measures–not objecting to the requirements, but asking for a definition of balanced measures and how to use them. Some agencies, such as the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Veterans Affairs, already have sophisticated performance management systems that incorporate balanced measures. Other agencies, like OPM, are starting with more modest approaches. Joyce Edwards, Director of OPM's Office of Executive Resources Management (OERM), observes, "The important thing is to start the conversation with your executives about how to broaden their views of performance management to address organizational results, customer satisfaction, and employee perspectives. Starting the conversation is key to changing the culture." We are already working with agencies to gather and share information, tools, and best practices about performance management and balanced measures.
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