The GAO, which often reports on the personnel challenges facing other agencies, has said its faces many of the same challenges itself, including recruitment, retention and managing telework.
An annual report said that “the current job market, with its record low levels of unemployment, particularly in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, makes attracting quality talent with the necessary skills a top challenge.” It said it has focused recruitment efforts on colleges and universities “with programs that are commensurate with the skills our analysts need to succeed; continued to foster and leverage long-standing relationships with higher education officials through a variety of ongoing partnerships; and identified new ways of attracting diverse candidates.”
Regarding retention, it stressed support for work-life-balance and professional growth through telework, flexible work schedules, the student loan repayment program, and an annual analyst promotion cycle. “Our supervisors receive ongoing training on such topics as developing, motivating, and empowering staff; having constructive performance conversations; connecting teams at a distance; and more.”
It added that nearly all GAO workers participate in telework and that an employee survey conducted this year found that “while employees are overwhelmingly positive about telework as a program, challenges with technology are prevalent . . . we are in the process of deploying a number of IT initiatives to improve the telework experience.”