12/009/98: An Open Letter to Federal Workers from the Vice President of the United States


An Open Letter to
Federal Workers from the
Vice President
of the United States

December 9, 1998

When President Clinton asked me to lead an effort to reinvent government more than five years ago, I asked you to help. I asked you to find and fix the problems and to build on the successful programs that were already underway.

As part of our effort, we have been measuring customer satisfaction and business results. We have recently measured employee satisfaction. The National Partnership for Reinventing Government, in partnership with the Office of Personnel Management, Merit Systems Protection Board, and the Federal Aviation Administration, sent a survey to 34,000 randomly-selected employees. Almost 14,000 responded. I am pleased to report that

  • 75 percent said their organization had service goals aimed at meeting customer expectations.
  • 65 percent said supervisors supported employees' family and personal life responsibilities.
  • 62 percent said their organizations respected and valued differences among individuals.
  • 60 percent said a spirit of cooperation and teamwork existed in their work unit.
  • 62 percent said they are satisfied with their jobs.

In those organizations that make reinvention a priority, there was strong agreement that agencies are putting customers first and empowering employees.

However, certain areas demand improvement. Only about one-third of those surveyed said their organizations make reinvention a priority, reward creativity and innovation, or take corrective actions when employees fail to perform adequately. Only 25 percent said management and unions work cooperatively.

You will find the full results of the federal employee survey on the NPR website at http://www.npr.gov/library/misc/survey.html.

Clearly, the survey shows that reinvention works, but we have a long way to go. Experience in the private sector shows that large-scale organizational change takes many years. I plan to meet with agency officials and I have asked NPR to help agencies take their next steps in creating a government that works better, costs less, and delivers results that Americans care about.

President Clinton and I are proud of what you have achieved. Working together we will restore the faith of the American people in their government. Thank you for your fine work.

Al Gore

Survey Summary
Full Survey Results

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