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The Federal Employment Crisis
As thousands of federal employees approach retirement age, The Post explores the government's impending brain drain and the difficulty in hiring and keeping the best people on the job.

___ Join the Discussion ___

Post staff writer Stephen Barr will take over the Federal Diary column next Sunday, May 14, succeeding Mike Causey. Tell him about your experience working for the federal government. Steve will relay some of your stories in his column.

Live Online: Barr discussed the personnel challenges facing the federal government.

Tell Us Your Story: Reader comments, reactions, anecdotes.

E-mail: Send messages to the Federal Page at publicserv@washpost.com.

Federal Diary column

__ Federal Pay Calculator __

GS Level

2001 Annual Salary:

The calculations here are based on a nationwide 2.7 percent increase plus a separate "locality pay" adjustment. Numbers for "rest of U.S." do not include Alaska and Hawaii.

Source: Office of Personnel Management

The Talent Gap
Part One by Stephen Barr
Within five years, about 30 percent of the government's 1.6 million full-time civil service employees will be eligible to retire. Another 20 percent could seek early retirement. Can government agencies find top-notch replacements with the right skills?

Science Fields Offer Prestige, Few Perks
Part Two by Guy Gugliotta
For scientists and engineers, a federal government job is a constant cost-benefit calculation: Do the intellectual challenge and prestige that come with working at world-famous national institutions offset the money and perks offered by the outside world?
Retiring With Protection, at 55

Wanted: More Government Lawyers
Part Three by James V. Grimaldi
A recent wave of skyrocketing salary increases for law firm associates -- between $110,000 and $140,000 a year for first-year associates at top firms in the District -- is dampening the government's law school recruitment efforts and luring away agency lawyers.
Chart: Attorney Attrition

To Find and Keep Techies, a Corps of an Idea
Part Four by John Schwartz
Private industry, with its bigger bucks and stock options, is causing a technology brain drain as the need for technology-savvy workers is increasing across the ranks of the federal government.

Secretarial Pool Shrinking, Roles Expanding
Part Five by Michael A. Fletcher
For generations, clerks and secretaries formed the backbone of the federal work force. But sweeping changes in information technology have not only reduced the government's need for secretaries and clerks, but also changed the nature of their work.

Recruits Continue to Flock to State, CIA
Part Six by Vernon Loeb
The State Department and CIA offer unique careers in diplomacy and intelligence with compensation packages that may fall short of Wall Street and Silicon Valley but remain equal to, or better than, those in academia and the nonprofit sector.

Related Link
The Washington Post Federal Page

On the Web
Office of Personnel Management Fact Book

General Accounting Office Report: Managing in the New Millennium

Brookings Center for Public Service

U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board Survey: The Changing Federal Workplace

Empowering Federal Employees, by George V. Voinovich, chairman of the Senate Governmental Affairs subcommittee on government management

Some documents above are in the PDF format. Download a PDF reader.

© 2000 The Washington Post Company

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