People are the federal government's most valuable asset in managing for results. The importance of human capital is underscored by the many links GAO has identified between agencies' human capital shortfalls and the programmatic challenges. A consensus has yet to emerge on broad-based federal human capital legislative reform. However, even in the absence of fundamental legislative reform, federal agencies need to take a more strategic and integrated approach to human capital management and to maximize their efforts in such areas as workforce planning, recruiting and retention, succession planning, training and professional development, and performance management and rewards, within the context of current law. Just as modern performance management principles have been brought to federal financial management, information technology management, and results-oriented goal-setting and performance measurement, so they must be brought to federal human capital management. Congress, the Office of Management and Budget, the Office of Personnel Management, the agencies, and other interested parties must work together to make this happen.
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