The Weakest Link: How Strengthening Assessment Leads to Better Federal Hiring

cover thumbnail Author(s): Partnership and PDRI
Publication Date: 08/26/2010
Publication Topics: Recruiting and Hiring, Strategic Human Capital Planning
Publication Type: Research Reports and Surveys
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For our government to succeed and achieve its mission, it must be able to identify and hire skilled, capable and dedicated employees.

Everyone agrees that the federal government doesn't always hire well, with talent lost because the selection process today moves too slowly and because hiring managers and human resources personnel often do a poor job of selecting the right candidates--those who will be the most successful in the job.

The Obama administration is seeking to address these issues with a hiring reform plan that calls for agencies to "select high-quality candidates efficiently and quickly."

Given the direct connection between good hiring decisions, a first-class civil service and a high performing government, the Partnership for Public Service, in cooperation with PDRI, a PreVisor Company, took an in depth look at how agencies are assessing candidates for federal jobs today, the barriers to hiring the best candidates and how the process can be improved.

Our study found that applicant assessment is the weakest link in the government's problematic hiring chain, with top candidates frequently getting lost in meaningless evaluation. The public is the biggest loser, because the result often is a wasted opportunity to strengthen the civil service.

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The Partnership for Public Service is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that works to revitalize our federal government by inspiring a new generation to serve and by transforming the way government works.


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