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Full Speed Hiring (but not so fast)!

Full Speed Hiring (but not so fast)!

Mike Causey | Federal News Radio

In a Marquis of Queensbury world, where manner and courtesy reigned, it would have been dirty pool. But the TV station was playing by different rules. It took advantage of the courtesy and respect shown it by the security folks by tricking them. To make a point.

Point taken.

For some time after that, anybody who even looked like they had a media connection was yanked out for a very full search. That produced outrage from our side.

So what does this have to do with the slow government hiring process?

Maybe nothing, maybe a lot.

For years the government has been under orders to shorten the (usually very long) time it takes to get somebody on board. Critics say the best candidates get bored and take jobs in the private sector. That the government is sluggish and its hiring process is run by slugs.

But what if they streamlined it completely. Walk in and get hired the next day.


Except we live in a dangerous world. For many, many federal jobs, extended vetting is a good idea. Not just Defense, Homeland Security and the CIA but also outfits that have all our secrets: Social Security, the IRS and the Census Bureau, to name a few.

Prediction: The very member of Congress who demands that agencies shorten their hiring turnaround time (maybe because of a constituent complaint) would be the first member of Congress in line to blame federal workers the first time a security problem happened because of a “sloppy” (or too brief) clearance, which allowed a spy or former ax-murderer to join the payroll, came to light.

Actually the solution is simple, at least for the politicians.

Streamline the hiring and clearance process. Set a time (what, one week, two weeks, four weeks tops) to get people on the payroll. Or suffer the consequences. At the same time, safeguards should be in place that would insure that the government didn’t hire dangerous or untrustworthy people, ever. Or suffer the consequences.

Do it fast, but don’t make any mistakes. Or else.

See how easy it is?

Next problem!

The Demise of the KSA?

The beloved KSA, the Knowledge, Skills and Abilities part of federal job applications, may be going the way of the Dodo and the Great Auk. We learned about DHS’s efforts yesterday on the Federal Drive. Click here for more.

Possible FEHBP tax in the works by Suzanne Kubota

Health Care reform could cost Federal Employees more money. An excise tax included in health care reform legislation would smack a 40 percent tax on some health insurance plans, including your FEHBP, beginning in 2013. The tax wouldn’t directly come out of your pocket, but the insurance companies are sure to charge someone more to make up the difference. Details can be found in this morning’s Federal Newscast on the Federal Drive page.

Nearly Useless Factoid by Suzanne Kubota

Radioactive rabbit feces are getting scooped up as part of one of the nation’s largest environmental cleanups. Seems the bunnies burrowed into contaminated sites within the Hanford nuclear reservation, and now “helicopters have flown over the area to map out places where rabbits deposited the contamination, which emits gamma rays.” The good news, notes Senior Correspondent Mike Causey, is “they can pick up the pellets at night!” (I wonder if the Swedes know about this. See the NUF from October 16th.)

To reach Mike:

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