The Federal Employee Suggestion System:

Possibilities for Improvement

FPCD-78-73: Published: Nov 8, 1978. Publicly Released: Nov 8, 1978.

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The Incentive Awards Program's objective is to encourage civilian employees to contribute to the efficiency, economy, or other areas of government operations by recognizing and rewarding them for exceptionally meritorious achievements or suggestions.

The full benefits of an effective employee suggestion system are not being realized by federal agencies. Pronounced support of a suggestion system alone does not guarantee its effectiveness. Many managers and employees lack enthusiasm for the system, and relatively few employees contribute suggestions. Persistent problems prevail because no single office with the authority to act has directed agencies to aggressively implement the system.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Chairperson of the Civil Service Commission (CSC), and the successor, the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), should direct agency heads to develop plans for, and aggressively implement, an effective employee suggestion system through: (1) active management commitment and support; (2) clearly defined goals; (3) adequate organization and staffing; (4) constructive action on suggestions submitted; and (5) realistic evaluation of the system's operations and results. The Chairperson and the Director should also require that agency plans be reviewed by the CSC and OPM and should suspend an agency's authority to grant awards if the agency's plan is not administered in accordance with CSC and OPM guidance.

    Agency Affected:


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