Researchers Have Settled The Question Of Whether It’s Better To Work From Home Or The Office

It’s an old debate: Some cite research suggesting that remote workers earn more, quit less, and are more productive than their office-dwelling counterparts. Others point to evidence that workers at home are less productive and less innovative than workers who labor shoulder-to-shoulder.

Which camp is right? Probably both. And neither. There’s actually only one right answer to the question of whether employees work better at home or in the office, says Ben Waber, the CEO of the workplace analytics company Humanyze and a visiting scientist at MIT: It depends. For more, click here.

What do you think? Is working from home effective for your job? In your organization? In your circumstances, how could remote work be more productive and satisfying?

Leaders: “Recognizing” Employees Requires More Than Just Knowing Who Works for You

Results of a 2012 American Psychological Association (APA) survey of working Americans indicate that feeling valued was a key driver of engagement and job performance[1]. For example, among employees who indicated that they were valued, 93% agreed that they were motivated to do their best at work and 88% reported that they felt engaged. In sharp contrast, employees who thought they were not valued indicated agreement levels of only 33% and 38%, respectively, to these same questions about motivation and engagement.

MSPB’s research confirms that appreciation is similarly important to Federal employees and Federal agencies. Our analysis revealed that employees who believed that their effort would result in higher performance and that they would receive recognition for that performance were more likely to perform well[2].

For these reasons, appreciation and recognition for a job well done are more than a matter of courtesy. Unfortunately, the trend in Federal employees’ experience of recognition is not positive, …..

To continue reading this article, click here.


The Federal Civil Service Hiring System Is Out of Balance

There is widespread dissatisfaction with the system for hiring into the Federal civil service. Perhaps it is worth examining how well the Government is living up to what I call the four core values of that system. They are:

  1. Hiring must be merit-based, with selection “determined solely on the basis of relative ability, knowledge, and skills.”
  2. There must be “fair and open competition” for Federal jobs “which assures that all receive equal opportunity.”
  3. The Government should “endeavor to achieve a workforce from all segments of society.”
  4. Military veterans shall receive preference for Federal jobs[1].

Few would argue with the wisdom of these values in the abstract, but in practice, the first three values appear underemphasized.

Before looking at outcomes in federal hiring, however, it is worthwhile to recount how the environment for Federal hiring has changed in recent decades. Key changes include: …..

To continue reading this article, click here.


Federal Employee Retention: If We Hire Them, Can We Keep Them?

Many observers wonder whether the Federal Government will be able to recruit the people needed to replace retiring employees and fill new roles and positions. However, recruitment is only one battle in the war for talent. A well-written job announcement, a rigorous assessment program, and a timely job offer do little good if a new hire does not stay to make a measurable contribution. This article offers some suggestions for agencies seeking to retain and engage new employees, based on a look at new hires in 2011 and 2012.

  • There is reason for optimism—but not complacency. As shown in the table below, most new Federal employees appear willing to give the Federal Government a chance to make its case as an employer—at least for the short term. Among the more than 300,000 new hires appointed in fiscal years 2011 and 2012, 91% were on the rolls one year after appointment…..

To continue reading this article, click here.

What do you think? Do you agree with the suggestions this article provides for agencies?

How You Can Use Social Media Analytics to Advance Your Mission

The December attack in San Bernardino prompted people to ask whether the government should be more active in using social media data to anticipate violent behavior. Certainly, social data can be highly valuable, but it has limitations, and agencies should be aware of how best to use it.

Here are some areas where social media can provide valuable insight:

Determining sentiment. It is very useful to understand how citizens feel about certain issues such as a new a policy. Many programs will try to determine sentiment by categorizing certain words as positive or negative, but there are limitations. Something can be said with sarcasm or irony and mean the opposite of what outsiders take at face value. True sentiment analysis must take context into consideration.

To continue reading this article, click here.

How can you use social media analytics in your organization, in your job?

Smart Hiring: The Quality Imperative

In this article, Government Executive discusses the impact of the ever-increasing number of candidates applying for positions in the federal government, stating that by creating larger pipelines of applicants, agencies have created bigger quality and time problems for themselves.

Smart Hiring: The Quality Imperative

What do you think? Do you agree with the solutions Government Executive proposes to solve these problems? What other solutions do you think could resolve the issues discussed?

Don’t Let the Hatch Act Destroy Your Federal Career

The federal civil service was created as a politically neutral, professional workforce with hiring based on a merit system. Thus, there are restrictions on federal employees regarding politics and political activity.
If you are a federal employee and unfamiliar with the Hatch Act, it is essential that you become acquainted with this law and how it could impact your federal career.
This article provides a brief overview of the new guidelines issued by the Office of the Special Counsel.

Paying the Price for Unlawful Discrimination

When employees are not happy, employers – often unwittingly – pay the price. In the article, Government Pays the Price for Making Federal Employees Depressed, Matthew Tully discusses pecuniary losses and non-pecuniary damages awarded by EEOC under the Civil Rights Act .

Do you think that agencies consider the impact of court cases that award damages when making decisions? Have you heard of any instances at your agency in which the cost of discrimination complaint awards have changed management practices?