Privatizing OPM Investigations:

Implementation Issues

T-GGD-95-186: Published: Jun 15, 1995. Publicly Released: Jun 15, 1995.

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GAO discussed the Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) proposed privatization of its investigative function, focusing on whether the: (1) investigative function could be performed by a non-federal organization; and (2) conversion to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) is feasible. GAO noted that: (1) certain aspects of OPM investigative functions could be privatized, however, decisions regarding an individual's suitability for employment or eligibility for security clearance should be made by federal officials; (2) several issues pertaining to the feasibility of the proposed ESOP have not been addressed, since an ESOP business plan has not yet been developed; (3) it is unclear whether ESOP employees would have the same access to sensitive data available to OPM investigators; and (4) it is unclear whether OPM employees would be willing to eventually become a part of the proposed ESOP.

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