Tuesday, June 29, 2021: OFCCP Continues Its Climb in Best Places to Work
The Partnership for Public Service (PSP) announced the 2020 Best Places to Work in the Federal Government. The rankings include 482 federal agencies and their subcomponent agencies, including the OFCCP and the EEOC, during the last year of the Trump Administration broken down into the following categories:
- 17 “large” agencies (15,000+ employees)
- 25 “midsize” agencies (1,000 – 14,999 employees)
- 29 “small” agencies (100 – 999 employees)
- 411 “subcomponent” agencies (subagencies, bureaus, divisions, centers, and offices within agencies with at least 100 employees: this is where OFCCP lives)
Top of the List (for the 9th year in a row) is NASA. The Department of Labor ranked 18 out of 25 midsize agencies and scored a 69.2% “Engagement score” (the top overall score, defined below). OFCCP’s Engagement Score soared to #276 out of 411 subcomponent agencies under the leadership of former OFCCP Director Craig Leen, as OFCCP leap-frogged to a 67.5% engagement score, up over 41% from the last year of the Obama Administration. (However, read the caveat, below, reporting that the Engagement Scoring changed a bit in 2020 (although the scoring and weighting remained the same through the Obama years and the first three years of the Trump Administration.) In a bright spot for OFCCP, all of OFCCP’s Best Places to Work scores rose dramatically between 2018 and 2020 (the COVID-19 pandemic year) following Leen’s appointment as the OFCCP Director in mid-November 2017. Director Yang took office January 20, 2021 after the reporting period in the 2020 Survey.
The data are interesting not just because they demonstrate that OFCCP employees do recognize differences in leadership, but because they also show that Director Leen first stumbled, from the agency’s perspective, in 2018 (his first full year on the job). But the survey data also show that Director Leen then corrected course (from the agency employee perspective) and OFCCP employee satisfaction markedly increased in 2019. This was the very moment federal contractor representatives began to notice Leen’s shift away from contractor interests to uncritically greenlighting agency discrimination claims.
Employee satisfaction with OFCCP then increased again very dramatically (leaped, really) across all scoring questions during the pandemic year of 2020. OFCCP obviously liked working from home. The “Work-Life” balance attitude of the agency moved up 20% alone in the COVID-19 pandemic year! Similarly, OFCCP’s appreciation of its local supervisors skyrocketed just over 20% in 2020, the year the agency’s Supervisors left their offices and went home.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which has long been perceived to be a well-run federal agency, ranked 13 out of 25 midsize agencies, and scored a 73.3% engagement score—almost an 8% higher evaluation from its employees than OFCCP’s employees scored their agency.
The Engagement Score determines the overall rankings. The administrators of the Best Places in the Federal Government to work survey calculated the Engagement Score using a proprietary weighted formula that looks at responses to three different questions in the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (FEVS). The three engagement questions are:
- I recommend my organization as a good place to work.
- Considering everything, how satisfied are you with your job?
- Considering everything, how satisfied are you with your organization?
Overall, the government-wide employee engagement score was 69.0 points out of 100. This score fell short of the private sector, which registered an employee engagement rating of 77.0. The private sector data include more than 8 million survey responses collected between 2016 and 2020 from various companies and industries.
Where Did the Data Come From?
The administrators of the survey gathered information between mid-September and early November of 2020, during Craig Leen’s tenure as OFCCP Director. 59% of respondents reported that they teleworked every day during the COVID-19 pandemic’s peak, compared to just 3% before the COVID-19 pandemic gripped the United States in mid-March 2020. The survey went to all full and part-time, permanent, nonseasonal Executive Branch employees. The response rate was 44.3% across all reporting agencies, as 624,800 federal employees completed the survey. This is a 1.7-point increase from 2019. The FEVS methodology is available on OPM’s website.
Note About 2020 Data
In 2020, the Survey administrator changed how it calculated the percentage of positive responses to the FEVS questions. Therefore, the Survey Administrator warns that the 2020 scores should not be directly compared to scores from previous years. For more information, see the Methodology section.