Kristine Simmons, VP of Government Affairs at the Partnership for Public Service, discusses the civilian workforce changes in the 2019 NDAA, and how it could impact the greater federal workforce in the near future.
While the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act includes an increase in military personnel, there’s a workforce aspect to the bill that could impact other agencies. A small, overlooked detail could get the ball rolling on reform in the civil service. “There’s a particular title in there called ‘civilian personnel provisions.’ That’s where we can go to find out what might apply to the rest of government, and to civilians at DoD specifically. There are some nice nuggets in there that deal with federal hiring. There are some things that agencies have been eager to get for a long time, and the big one is direct hire authority. That’s just a fancy way of saying that it’s going to be easier for agencies to go and recruit students and recent graduates on college campuses without requiring all of those students to go through the normal complicated hiring process,” said Kristine Simmons, VP of Government Affairs at the Partnership for Public Service. “We have a federal workforce where only 6 percent of people are under age 30 compared to 24 percent in the private sector. We really need that fresh new talent.”