Tags: Homeland Security | morale | sinks | workplace

Washington Post: Morale at Homeland Security Plummets

By    |   Friday, 10 Oct 2014 06:46 PM

Morale has sunk to new lows at the Department of Homeland Security, where workers complain innovation is discouraged, treatment of staffers is arbitrary and there's a failure to recruit skilled personnel, The Washington Post reports.

Citing an unpublished "Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey," The Post reports morale and management problems that have dogged the department worsened during the Obama administration and have gotten more serious since Secretary Jeh Johnson took over in December 2013.

Johnson who has taken a public role in crises including the surge of unaccompanied children crossing the border illegally to security lapses at the Secret Service to the threat of the Islamic State (ISIS)  and Deputy Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas conceded the 2014 survey results were dismal.

"You deserve a workplace that recognizes your efforts, supports your great work, and fulfills your highest aspirations," they wrote in a department-wide email Friday, The Post reported.

"It is clear from feedback since the creation of this Department that many of you do not feel that you have such a workplace. The results from the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey taken earlier this year continue to communicate this point strongly…. The results are not good."

Johnson and other top leaders come in for particularly harsh criticism in the survey, The Post reported. Only 21 percent of workers in the department's "science and technology directorate" held positive views of their leadership’s ability to "generate high levels of motivation and commitment in the workforce," The Post reported.

The results weren't much better department-wide.

The Post reported in 2013, 29.9 percent of employees department-wide had a positive view of their leaders’ ability to "generate high levels of motivation and commitment in the workforce." The number dipped to 24.9 percent this year.

Asked if their leaders "maintain high standards of honesty and integrity," 39.1 percent of employees responded positively. Last year, that number was 44.5 percent.

Over the past four years, employees have left DHS at a rate nearly twice as fast as for the federal government overall, The Post reported, citing its review of a federal database.

More than 40,000 DHS employees participated in the survey.

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Morale has sunk to new lows at the Department of Homeland Security, where workers complain innovation is discouraged, treatment of staffers is arbitrary and there's a failure to recruit skilled personnel, The Washington Post reports.
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Friday, 10 Oct 2014 06:46 PM
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