DHS memo reveals agency personnel are treated like "human capital"
Given that track record, if anyone still has some doubt that DHS is a federal agency in disarray, the following memo provided to Narco News should settle the question.
From: [DHS] Broadcast
Sent: Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Subject: MESSAGE FROM [DHS] DEPUTY SECRETARY [Michael] JACKSON: DHS FHC SURVEY RESULTS
January 30, 2007
MEMORANDUM FOR ALL DHS EMPLOYEES
FROM: MICHAEL P. JACKSON
SUBJECT: Federal Human Capital Survey Results
The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) surveyed federal employees last summer about various measures of job satisfaction and agency performance, and the results will be released today. Over 10,400 DHS employees responded and, candidly, what you said shows that DHS is not where any of us wants to be.
The survey results will be posted on the OPM website (www.opm.gov) and our own DHS intranet, and I encourage you to review them in detail. In brief, of 36 peer federal agencies surveyed, DHS ranks as follows:
These results deliver a clear and jolting message from managers and line employees alike. On whole, it is not significantly changed since OPMs 2004 employee survey. Secretary Chertoff and I discussed these results with concern.
- 36th on the job satisfaction index
- 35th on the leadership and knowledge management index
- 36th on the results-oriented performance culture index
- 33rd on the talent management index
Initial details indicate that we get low marks in basic supervision, management and leadership. Some examples are:
I am writing to assure you that, starting at the top, the leadership team across DHS is committed to address the underlying reasons for DHS employee dissatisfaction and suggestions for improvement.
- Promotion and pay increase based on merit
- Dealing with poor performance
- Rewarding creativity and innovation
- Leadership generating high levels of motivation in the workforce
- Recognition for doing a good job
- Lack of satisfaction with various component policies and procedures
- Lack of information about what is going on with the organization
Standing up this new and vital Department is clearly not a walk in the park, but our employees bring a passion for this mission, great professionalism and outstanding performance every single day. DHS employees have shouldered the weight of long hours, complex integration assignments, multiple reorganizations, and no small amount of criticism. In some cases youve had to wait too long for tools you need to succeed.
These are not excuses to rationalize where we stand, rather an acknowledgement on my part of how much our team is doing. And there are good news items in the survey for DHS. As chief operating officer of DHS, I commit to improve results. We will need your help.
Several months ago, the Secretary asked the Homeland Security Advisory Council to study and suggest a strategy for creating a stronger common culture. This month, drawing on the experience of top executives in the private sector, the Council has delivered a set of recommendations for promoting a culture of excellence in DHS.
In the days ahead, our Under Secretary for Management, Paul Schneider, will join the Secretary and me in evaluating carefully the details of the OPM survey and the HSAC report. Our first steps will be to analyze thoroughly the survey data, including specific attention to those government organizations that are recognized for their high performance in these areas, and determine the specific steps to improvement. This process will include the leadership team in each operating component and every headquarters unit to discuss details of the survey with our workforce. We will do so with a sense of urgency and seriousness.
Strengthening core management is one of the Secretarys highest priorities and the key elements are effective communications and proper recognition of our workforce. You deserve nothing less. We will build on some good work that has already been done to chart a path forward on these issues. We will then go where you point us, to improve job satisfaction for the DHS team.
Along the way, I will continue to ask for your help and guidance. Thanks in advance for that assistance, and thanks for what you are doing each day for DHS.
One note of guidance from this observer would be for DHS to come clean about its agents alleged complicity in the House of Death mass murder in Juarez, Mexico. A good start would be to release the Joint Assessment Team review that DHS U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) prepared (in cooperation with the DEA) about the tragedy.
To date, DHS and DEA have refused to release the results of that internal JAT investigation with the DEA going as far as to claim it is seeking the have portions of the report classified due to national security concerns.
You cant promote a culture of excellence when you fail address a culture of cover-up and corruption.