DoD Introduces Labor-collaborated Personnel Reform
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In the wake of repealing the disastrous National Security Personnel System (NSPS) in 2010, Department of Defense (DoD) officials were tasked with reforming its civilian personnel management system in collaboration with its labor stakeholders. Throughout the NSPS campaign, DoD fought vigorously to unilaterally impose the personnel reforms in the face of fierce union opposition. Because of the tensions developed in the NSPS campaign, collaboration of the two sides was a daunting task. But it was no secret that DoD desperately needed to update its arcane personnel management practices, so both sides came together to work on the aptly-named reform: New Beginnings.
The Defense Performance Management system and Appraisal Program has incorporated a three-level system to rate employee performance. The three levels are: Level 1 (unacceptable), level 3 (fully successful), and level 5 (outstanding). The three-level system allows for a more objective method to distinguish between levels of performance, which will allow for more-informed discussions between the employee and supervisor to occur throughout the year. At a minimum, performance discussions will include an initial performance planning meeting to discuss performance expectations, a mid-year performance review and a final performance appraisal.
While much tension continues to be present between labor and management within DoD due to the agency’s past scorched earth campaign to institute NSPS, NFFE played a key role in developing and advising the New Beginnings System. The system will be largely positive for NFFE-IAM members and brings much-needed reform to DoD’s Performance Management and Appraisal program.