Federal Manager's Daily Report

The proposed rules on the DHS personnel system show that

the agency took into account comments it received over the

past year during the drafting of the system arguing that

managers should not have complete discretion regarding the

amount of performance-based pay increases for their

subordinates. Instead, performance-based pay increases

will be a function of the amount of money in the performance

pay pool, the relative point value placed on performance

ratings, and the distribution of performance ratings within

that performance pay pool.

In addition, while managers will have to continue to

establish and communicate performance expectations to

employees, they no longer require that this be accomplished

exclusively through written performance elements and

standards set at the beginning of the appraisal period.

Instead, the rules would give managers the option of

establishing and communicating performance expectations

during the course of the appraisal period “through specific

work assignments or other means (including standard

operating procedures, organizational directives, manuals,

and other generally established job requirements that apply

to employees in a particular occupation and/or unit).”

“Managers will also be held accountable for clearly and

effectively communicating those expectations, giving

employees feedback regarding their performance in relation

to those expectations, making meaningful performance

distinctions in support of the Department’s new

performance-based pay system, and identifying and

addressing unacceptable performance,” the rules say.