Federal Employment:

How Government Jobs Are Viewed on Some College Campuses

GGD-94-181: Published: Sep 9, 1994. Publicly Released: Sep 9, 1994.

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GAO provided information on: (1) how college and university graduates view federal employment; and (2) federal efforts to improve federal recruitment, hiring, and job information dissemination activities.

GAO found that: (1) most school officials believed that their graduates had little interest in federal employment due to the lack of job availability information, low starting salaries, a burdensome application process, the poor image of the federal workforce, and inadequate federal recruiting policies; (2) although graduates' views of federal employment varied by school, most believed that private-sector employment offered better career growth opportunities than federal employment; (3) over 75 percent of the 884 respondents who sought employment or remained in pre-graduation jobs stated that they did not apply for federal jobs; (4) although 249 of the 884 respondents stated that they had not yet found suitable employment, nearly 70 percent of these respondents were not planning to seek federal employment; (5) most respondents' views of federal employment were based on general observations and common knowledge; (6) only 12 percent of all respondents cited job recruiters as a source of employment information; (7) Office of Personnel Management (OPM) officials believe that current federal recruiting, hiring, and job information dissemination practices have made the federal government a more attractive and competitive workplace; (8) new college graduates will likely encounter difficulties in finding federal employment, since the government is downsizing; and (9) OPM recruitment and hiring efforts have been worthwhile in assisting prospective employees in learning about and obtaining information on federal jobs.

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