Retirements continue to rise — what's it mean for you?


The latest pension processing stats from the Office of Personnel Management contained an interesting nugget on retirement trends. Namely, that they’re continuing to rise in 2012, after shooting up 24 percent in 2011.

It’s not hard to figure out why. Agencies are offering federal employees buyouts and early outs left and right to deal with limited budgets. And with Congress constantly threatening to further freeze feds’ pay, increase their retirement contributions, or switch to a high-5, many feds are beating a path to the door.

Federal Times would like to hear from you about the still-increasing retirement trend, and how it touches you. Are your co-workers dropping left and right lately, and is that hurting your agency’s ability to get its mission done? Or are you yourself planning to retire soon, and why?

Write me at if you’d like to talk. I’m interested in hearing from managers as well as rank-and-file employees. If you want to stay anonymous, that’s fine.


About Author


  1. Sequestration is the wild card. Should that occur (as it appears increasingly likely), who’s to say where the cuts will be made? If it appears that civilian personnel will bear the brunt of these cuts, to preserve uniformed pay, health care as well a major procurements, then I would imagine the early-retirement authorizations will open up to all job series and with a blanket approval for those who elect such.
    Should that occur, I will take an early out and pursue a second career in defense in the private sector.
    For now, I have reduced my living expenses to rival those of a trappist monk. One never knows…………………………….

  2. I only wish I had enough years in to retire. Yes, there has been an acceleration in the number of retirements in my organization, most precipitated by the current “hate the fed employee” attitude. Why stick around when the media and idiotic congress people preach that feds have it made? There is impact to ongoing operations; nothing drastic, as no one is irreplacable, but there is a lack of documentation and knowledge transfer. An additional reason to leave is the growth in preferential hiring – people are hired for reasons other than qualifications/competence, just to meet diversity and veteran hiring requirements. For me, this is more detrimental to the federal workforce as a whole. I have seen young professionals join the fed workforce and leave after a couple of years, due to the unprofessional leadership of employees who are not qualified and who feel their position was “owed” to them.

  3. Glenn is 100% correct. If it weren’t for the threat of sequestration, I would advise those eligible to wait and see. But sequestration – if it happens – may lead to really severe cuts, cuts none of us thought could possible happen.

    If you are able to retire, GO!

Leave A Reply