State Department reorg largely employee led
- By FederalSoup Staff
- Sep 26, 2017
A top official at the State Department testified at a House committee meeting this week, giving details and goals of the reorganization plans for the agency and its workforce.
Speaking at the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Sept. 26, Deputy Secretary John Sullivan said the workforce redesign occurring at the agency is 72 percent working-level employee led.
“I want to stress that the employee-led nature of the redesign is not an empty slogan,” he said during the hearing. “The Secretary wanted employees to drive this process from beginning to end, so that the Department and USAID can serve them better, even as they serve our country. An in-depth, bottom-up redesign effort of this nature has taken time – but it has generated strong proposals for reform that will meaningfully improve our ability to implement our mission.”
The agency used feedback from a survey of than 35,000 employees – nearly half of its entire global workforce to began its efforts – and found that: 41 percent of respondents said they did not have the tools needed to do their jobs; there are too many layers of approvals required to accomplish a simple task, with 75 percent saying that they have to use workarounds to get through complicated bureaucratic processes several times a year; and outdated technologies hinder their ability to coordinate with others and finish even a minor task.
“An in-depth, bottom-up redesign effort of this nature has taken time – but it has generated strong proposals for reform that will meaningfully improve our ability to implement our mission, Sullivan testified.
The working group has developed several key components of its reform plan, including: streamlining the policy creation process and optimize and realign our global footprint; maximizing the impact and accountability of foreign assistance; optimizing human resource support; and improving information technology platforms and modernizing legacy systems.
Changes such as these will save taxpayers a minimum of $5 billion over the next five years, with an aspirational whole of government target of up to $10 billion, he said.
Read the full testimony here.