The Washington Post

How quickly are federal agencies hiring? We’ll know soon.

(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Following up on President Obama’s orders last year to accelerate the often-lengthy federal hiring process, the administration is asking agencies for quarterly progress reports to see how close they are to the president’s goal of filling federal job vacancies within 80 days.

The Office of Personnel Management wants to know what percentage of workers are hired within the 80-day goal, and how long it’s taking on average per hire. In a memo sent last week, it's also asking agencies how long it takes to fill “mission-critical” jobs, including information-technology specialists, human resource officials and top career positions.

Numbers released in March suggest the government is still about 25 days shy of Obama’s 80-day goal, with agencies taking about 105 days to recruit and fill slots in fiscal 2010. Those numbers are down from about 122 days the year before and in the past, it used to take agencies up to 200 days to post a job, interview applicants and hire a new worker.

Obama and other administration officials have argued that the long hiring process is deterring otherwise qualified applicants from seeking federal positions.

Have you or someone you know applied for a federal job? How long did it take? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Ed O’Keefe is covering the 2016 presidential campaign, with a focus on Jeb Bush and other Republican candidates. He's covered presidential and congressional politics since 2008. Off the trail, he's covered Capitol Hill, federal agencies and the federal workforce, and spent a brief time covering the war in Iraq.


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