Tester bill would allow agencies to share info about job candidates

Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), chairman of the Senate federal workforce subcommittee, has introduced legislation that would allow federal agencies to share information about job candidates.

Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) in 2010. (Charles Dharapak/AP) Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) in 2010. (Charles Dharapak/AP)

Currently, agencies with similar hiring needs are prohibited from sharing their assessments of applicants, according to Tester’s office.

“This common-sense bill makes government more efficient,” Tester said. “It also helps speed up the hiring process, so we can make sure we have a strong federal workforce that is ready to serve the American people.”

The bill is co-sponsored by Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska).

The legislation was praised by the Partnership for Public Service, a good-government group that focuses on federal-workplace issues.

“The legislation will authorize agencies to share their best-qualified job candidates with one another, which will enable our government to recruit better talent, in addition to saving time and money,” said Max Stier, the Partnership’s president and chief executive.

Joe Davidson writes the Federal Diary, a column about federal government and workplace issues that celebrated its 80th birthday in November 2012. Davidson previously was an assistant city editor at The Washington Post and a Washington and foreign correspondent with The Wall Street Journal, where he covered federal agencies and political campaigns.

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