Legal Reference

1900 E St., NW, Washington, D.C. 20415
Phone: (202) 606-1800

The Office of Personnel Management is the federal government’s human resources agency. OPM supports agencies with personnel services and policy leadership including staffing tools, guidance on labor-management relations, preparation of future leaders, compensation policy development, and programs to improve workforce performance. The agency manages the federal retirement system, as well as the world’s largest employer-sponsored health insurance program serving more than nine million federal employees, retirees and their family members, and operates job-listing services.

Specifically, OPM’s responsibilities are to:

• administer a merit system for federal employment that includes recruiting, examining, and promoting people on the basis of their knowledge and skills, regardless of their race, religion, sex, political influence, or other nonmerit factors;

• protect and promote a merit based federal civil service through an oversight program; identifying opportunities for improving federal personnel policies and programs; and helping agencies meet mission goals through effective recruitment, development and utilization of employees;

• promote employment and job advancement opportunities within the federal government for disabled veterans and certain veterans who are qualified for employment preference;

• oversee regulations for assisting dislocated and surplus employees that require agencies to establish career transition plans and services, and to provide hiring preference to dislocated and surplus employees for those vacancies that do occur;

• supports government program managers in their personnel management responsibilities through a range of programs designed to develop and encourage the effectiveness of the government employee;

• provide retirement, insurance and other benefits services to federal employees, annuitants, and agencies;

• provide leadership in identifying emerging government- wide human resources management policy and operational issues and proposing specific measures and approaches for dealing with them;

• adjudicate certain claims arising out of disputes over compensation and leave;

• adjudicate claims arising under the Fair Labor Standards Act (see the Overtime section in Chapter 2); and

• adjudicate challenges to the classification of employee positions.

If you believe your position description does not accurately describe your work, first discuss this with your supervisor. If your supervisor believes that your position should be reevaluated, he or she can request a review by the personnel office. Further, you may appeal the classification of your position to your agency at any time. You may seek a change in the grade, occupational series, and sometimes the title of your position. You also may seek to have your general schedule position changed to the wage system or vice-versa.