Skip to main content

Priority Open Recommendations: Office of Personnel Management

GAO-24-107323 Published: May 28, 2024. Publicly Released: Jun 04, 2024.
Jump To:

Fast Facts

Each year, we make more than 1,000 recommendations to help the federal government save money, address issues on our High Risk List, and significantly improve government operations.

This letter to the Office of Personnel Management outlines 16 open recommendations that it should prioritize. For example, we recommended that OPM monitor enrollment and remove ineligible family members from the federal employees' health benefits program—which could save hundreds of millions, or even billons, of dollars per year.

OPM implemented 1 priority recommendation last year.

We regularly update priority recommendations here.

Graphic that says, "GAO's Priority Open Recommendations" and includes the OPM seal.

Skip to Highlights


What GAO Found

In May 2023, GAO identified 15 priority recommendations for the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). Since then, OPM has implemented one of those recommendations. Specifically, OPM took actions to implement the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team's cybersecurity recommendations and improved the timeliness for confirming that these actions were effective.

In May 2024, GAO identified two additional priority recommendations for OPM, bringing the total number to 16. These recommendations involve the following areas:

  • preventing improper payments,
  • improving the federal classification system,
  • making hiring authorities more effective,
  • improving payroll data,
  • addressing employee misconduct and improving performance management,
  • strengthening IT security and management, and
  • addressing mission critical skills gaps.

OPM's continued attention to these issues could lead to significant improvements in government operations.

Why GAO Did This Study

Priority open recommendations are the GAO recommendations that warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies because their implementation could save large amounts of money; improve congressional and/or executive branch decision-making on major issues; eliminate mismanagement, fraud, and abuse; or ensure that programs comply with laws and funds are legally spent, among other benefits. Since 2015, GAO has sent letters to selected agencies to highlight the importance of implementing such recommendations.

For more information, Michelle Sager at (202) 512-6806 or

Full Report

GAO Contacts

Office of Public Affairs


CybersecurityEmployee misconductFederal hiringFederal workforceGS grade classificationHigh-risk issuesImproper paymentsIT managementPayrollPerformance management