Senior Foreign Service

GGD-95-103R: Published: Mar 1, 1995. Publicly Released: Mar 1, 1995.

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Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reviewed the classification of Senior Foreign Service (SFS) positions in the Department of State, Agency for International Development, and U.S. Information Agency and provided information on issues related to the management of these positions. GAO noted that: (1) all three agencies use broad criteria or standards to classify their senior positions; (2) all three agencies use benchmark approaches to set salary class levels for headquarters and overseas positions; (3) SFS officers are appointed to a salary class and retain their rank and pay regardless of what position they occupy; (4) SFS employees may be assigned to positions which are above or below their personal pay grades; (5) SFS employees may be placed in overcomplement status and are not assigned to regular positions, although State has recently attempted to reduce the number of overcomplements; and (6) all three agencies periodically review their classification practices to maintain internal alignment.

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