Federal Workforce:

Recruitment and Retention of Senior Executives at the National Science Foundation

GGD-87-87FS: Published: Jun 4, 1987. Publicly Released: Jun 4, 1987.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed recruitment, retention, and salaries of Senior Executive Service (SES) personnel at the National Science Foundation (NSF).

GAO found that: (1) NSF experienced recruiting problems at the SES level, but it did not maintain statistical data on availability of candidates who declined offers or chose not to apply; (2) although top quality candidates were reluctant to leave research for federal administrative positions, NSF attracted individuals whose salary levels did not meet the government pay cap; (3) as of April 1987, NSF filled 104 out of 114 authorized SES positions; (4) all career separations from fiscal year 1985 through April 1987 were due to retirement, resignation, or reductions-in-force; (5) salaries for Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) participants occupying SES positions were generally higher than SES employee salaries; and (6) IPA participants received reimbursement for consulting work for the period of their assignments.

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