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OPM report chronicles performance progress

The Office of Personnel Management has posted its annual report card on how well the agency met its key human resources goals over the last fiscal year

The Office of Personnel Management has posted its annual report card on how well the agency met its key human resources goals over the last fiscal year.

The agency’s fiscal 2010 performance report details OPM’s success at achieving initiatives that further so-called “high performance goals,” including hiring reform, security clearance reform, wellness, telework and retirement claims processing. OPM said it met about 75 percent of its performance targets in FY 2010, down from 88 percent in fiscal 2009.

Some highlights of the wide-ranging report include:

Hiring time. While agencies are looking eventually to reduce to 80 calendar days the number of days it takes to hire employees into the most commonly filled positions, in fiscal 2010 they took an average of 105 days, the report said. That figure nonetheless was a significant improvement from a baseline of 122 days in fiscal 2009.

Veterans employment. The federal government improved its hiring of veterans in the first nine months of fiscal 2010 compared to the same period in fiscal 2009—50,546 vets hired compared to 48,554 a year earlier, the report said. Vets comprised 24.6 percent of total new hires during the period in fiscal 2010, up from to 22.7 percent in fiscal 2009. Twenty of the 24 agencies covered under the president’s 2009 Veterans Employment Initiative increased veterans hiring, OPM said.

Clearance investigations. At the end of fiscal 2010, OPM completed 90 percent of initial clearance investigations in an average of 39 days, besting the agency’s target of 90 percent in 40 days. OPM said it completed more than 2 million federal background investigations in FY 2010, with no current backlog in its program.

Retirement claims. Retirement claims remain a problem area. Processing time for retirement claims stood at 108 days during fiscal 2010, far short of OPM’s target of 45 days. OPM said the 108-day average is partly due to a new focus on accuracy in the Retirement and Benefits organization that took effect at the beginning of fiscal 2010. The agency said the numbers also were affected by the unexpected early retirements of 18,000 Postal Service workers, most of whose claims arrived in November and boosted average processing times for the rest of the year. OPM said it received what would normally comprise nine weeks worth of non-disability retirement claims during a two-week period in late November.

The complete report is available here.

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