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As of June 17, 2020, there are 4969 open recommendations, of which 518 are priority recommendations. Recommendations remain open until they are designated as Closed-implemented or Closed-not implemented.
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Recommendation: To help strengthen the government's ability to compete in the labor market for top talent, and to improve the federal hiring process, the Director of OPM, in conjunction with the CHCO Council, should use this information to determine whether opportunities exist to refine, consolidate, eliminate, or expand agency-specific authorities to other agencies and implement changes where OPM is authorized, including seeking presidential authorization (as necessary) in order to do so. In cases where legislation would be necessary to implement changes, OPM should work with the CHCO Council to develop legislative proposals.
Agency: Office of Personnel Management Status: Open Priority recommendation
Comments: OPM agreed with this recommendation and has taken actions to address it since GAO's August 2016 report. In April 2019, OPM issued final regulations implementing changes to direct hire authority to provide certain agencies with the ability to hire urgently needed information technology professionals more quickly. It also plans to provide in-person support to the Chief Human Capital Office council, Chief Information Officers Council, and human resources professionals and managers on how to use this new authority. In its fiscal year 2021 Congressional Budget Justification released on February 10, 2020, OPM noted that it was seeking to improve hiring by using flexibilities that exist within current authority. These include, for example, noncompetitive term-limited appointments of highly qualified experts, expansion of term/temporary hiring authorities, and limited noncompetitive hiring of students and recent graduates. However, some of these plans were initially introduced in the prior year's justification and progress continues to be unclear. Additionally, OPM said that it is currently reassessing administration priorities and was unable to provide further updates. While OPM has made some progress in this area, it will be important for the agency to prioritize and follow through on its planned actions to streamline hiring authorities. Expanding access to hiring authorities found to be highly efficient and effective while eliminating those found to be less effective would help simplify and improve the federal hiring process.