Fed Times on the air: Interview with News Channel 8


I paid a visit to the Washington-area cable program Federal News Tonight last evening to talk about the future of the National Security Personnel System. Take a look:

I usually appear once a month on Federal News Tonight to discuss the latest in federal personnel matters, and from here on in, we’ll be posting my interviews the following morning. Keep checking back for more.


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  1. I read with interest your article in the Federal Times regarding the new rules that OPM and OMB will issue on personnel reform in the government.

    I believe strongly that the effort by OMB and OPM to reform the flawed hiring system in the federal government is laudable, important and timely. When I first learned of it, I was hopeful. Unfortunately, the conclusion that managers are to blame for undue delays in the hiring process is ill-informed. As a former hiring manager for over 20 years, I know that my colleagues and I, desperate to fill vacancies, moved the final stages of hiring as quickly as possible. Even though the “top three” method did not often provide us the strongest list of candidates, we interviewed and sent back selections within two-three weeks. In my experience, the hiring process was significantly flawed in the initial stages due to the Kafaesque-like rules governing the development and approval of position descriptions, the drawn-out procedures for the advertisements of the jobs, and the mystifying procedures of identifying lists of qualified candidates whom a hiring manager is allowed to interview. Since “certs” or list of approved candidates expire in a set amount of time, I do not know how managers are allowed to sit on resumes and not conduct appropriate interviews and then select candidates accordingly. I would urge the SWAT teams or those considering ways to make the personnel system more efficient talk to more managers who currently work under extraordinarily ineffective HR rules and guidelines. At a minimum, I believe that two to three page, clear job descriptions, a carefully considered and transparent candidate identification process, and close collaboration with managers throughout would help. Blaming managers for the flawed system is simply wrong.

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