Evaluation Program (FPM 273)

222 FW 3
FWM Number
Originating Office
Division of Human Capital

3.1 Purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to define responsibilities, establish procedures, and provide guidance on the Service's personnel management evaluation (PME) program.

3.2 Policy. It is the policy of the Service to ensure that personnel management authorities and responsibilities are managed and carried out effectively.

3.3 Objectives. The objectives of the Service's PME program are to:

A. Assess how effectively personnel management services assist managers, supervisors, and employees in the accomplishment of the Service's mission;

B. Evaluate the quality and responsiveness of personnel management services provided to managers and employees;

C. Assess compliance with Federal, Departmental, and Service personnel management policies, procedures, and regulations; and

D. Identify required and recommended actions that will correct compliance problems and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of personnel management services.

3.4 Definitions.

A. Servicing Personnel Office. Provides personnel services that include the maintenance of official personnel folders and processing of the Standard Form 50, Notification of Personnel Action. The Regional personnel offices in Regions 1 through 7 and the Branch of Headquarters Operations, Division of Personnel Management, are servicing personnel offices.

B. Required Action. An action item within a PME report that identifies the need for compliance with Federal, Departmental, and/or Service personnel management policies, procedures, or regulations. A required action includes specific instructions as to how to correct a compliance problem. It is mandatory that a required action be addressed and completed.

C. Recommended Action. An action item within a PME report that contains guidance on how to improve a personnel management function, program, or procedure. A recommended action is advisory in nature, and there is no requirement to comply with suggested modifications to local policies and procedures.

3.5 Responsibilities.

A. The Director is responsible for the administration and direction of the Service's PME program.

B. The Assistant Director - Policy, Budget and Administration is responsible for administration of the policies and procedures associated with the PME program.

C. The Chief, Division of Personnel Management (DPM) is responsible for the development, implementation, and management of the Servicewide PME program.

D. Regional Directors are responsible for ensuring the proper administration of the PME program in their Regions.

E. Servicing Personnel Offices are responsible for developing and carrying out internal personnel management evaluation programs that include self-assessment and periodic review of personnel management functions and issues at subordinate field locations.

F. The Chief, Office of Administrative Support, Region 8 is responsible for internal evaluation of the limited personnel management program administered by Region 8.

3.6 Types of Evaluations.

A. General. General evaluations involve a review by DPM of all or the majority of components of a servicing personnel office or of the Region 8 personnel management program. The DPM will conduct one general evaluation of each servicing personnel office and the Region 8 personnel management program within a 4-year cycle. Follow-up review of compliance with required actions from the previous evaluation will usually be incorporated into the general evaluation in the next cycle.

B. Special. Special evaluations are focused on one or more personnel management components/issues and may be scheduled by DPM to review or follow up on a problem area identified through a previously conducted general evaluation.

C. Self-Assessment. Servicing personnel offices and the Chief, Office of Administrative Support, Region 8, are expected to periodically perform an internal self-assessment of their personnel management programs. The self-assessment should include an evaluation of such aspects as quality control, effectiveness, regulatory compliance, and efficiency. A self assessment program should include planned assistance visits to field activities, if any.

3.7 Scheduling of Evaluations.

A. Prior to the beginning of each fiscal year, the Service is required to schedule evaluations to be conducted for the upcoming fiscal year and submit the schedule to the Department's Office of Personnel.

B. A personnel management evaluation of each servicing personnel office and the Region 8 personnel management program will be scheduled by DPM once during each 4-year cycle. The first 4-year cycle began on October 1, 1987. Other types of evaluations will be scheduled as the need arises.

C. The Regional Director will be notified in writing of a scheduled evaluation at least 90 days before the commencement of an on-site review.

3.8 Evaluation Methodology. The following methods of gathering and analyzing information will be utilized in a general evaluation. One or more of these methods may be appropriate for other types of evaluations.

A. The Department's Personnel Management Evaluation Questionnaire (PMEQ) will be distributed to all employees or to a large sample of employees before the on-site phase of the evaluation so that the results may be analyzed and issues requiring attention may be identified in advance. The PMEQ is an employee attitude questionnaire that covers a broad range of personnel management and administrative issues.

B. A supervisory/managerial questionnaire will be distributed to a random sample of managers and supervisors and the responses analyzed before the on-site review. This questionnaire allows managers and supervisors to provide detailed assessments of and comments on the quality and responsiveness of their servicing personnel office.

C. Prior to the on-site review, the servicing personnel office or the Chief, Office of Administrative Support (for evaluations of Region 8), will be asked to provide DPM with information and statistics relevant to the program areas to be reviewed.

D. Key management officials will be interviewed by the evaluation team to identify management's level of satisfaction with the personnel management program.

E. The servicing personnel office's input into the PAY/PERS system for selected data elements will be assessed in advance of the on-site review.

F. Personnel records and files will be reviewed during the onsite evaluation to determine compliance with Federal, Departmental, and Service regulations, procedures, and policies. All findings will be discussed with the personnel office staff before presentation at the close-out conference.

3.9 Evaluation Procedures.

A. The on-site portion of the general evaluation will be conducted within a 1-week period. All personnel management program areas will usually be covered. Position classification audits will usually not be performed unless a special need arises.

B. Special review items, identified each fiscal year by the Department, will be added to the evaluation agenda, as appropriate. The Service will also identify at least one item for special review emphasis each fiscal year.

C. The evaluation will commence with an opening conference attended by the evaluation team, the Regional Director, and selected members of his/her/their staff. At the end of the week of the evaluation, the team will present a summary of the review findings at a close-out conference with the Regional Director.

D. Interviews will be scheduled during the week of the evaluation with the Regional Director, the Deputy Regional Director, the Assistant Regional Directors and their deputies, the Personnel Officer and other personnel office staff, and local labor union officials. Employees will be informed by the servicing personnel office that they may request interviews with the evaluation team members.

3.10 Self-Assessment Plan.

Each servicing personnel office and the Chief, Office of Administrative Support, Region 8, shall develop an annual plan for evaluation of the personnel management program components for which they have responsibility. This plan should include review of personnel management practices or problems at field activities, if appropriate. The annual plan should serve as a framework for a systematic, periodic review of the operation of the personnel management program and should be considered an internal working document that may need adjustment in response to changing local or program requirements. Annual plans and related accomplishments will be reviewed during PMEs conducted by DPM.

3.11 Reports and Records.

A. The DPM shall issue a report of the evaluation findings within approximately 60 days after the completion of the on-site phase. The report will include a discussion of review findings and recommended and required actions. Two copies of each PME report will be submitted by DPM to the Department's Office of Personnel.

B. The Regional Director shall respond to the required and recommended actions in the PME report within approximately 60 days from the date of receipt. Responses should include discussions of actions completed or planned for correction of identified problems. The DPM will review the response for adequacy. When all issues in the report have been adequately addressed, DPM will issue a memorandum to the Regional Director indicating that the evaluation file has been closed. Normally, on-site follow-up of the accomplishment of required and recommended actions will be incorporated into the next general evaluation.

C. A report should always be prepared for each self-assessment, planned assistance visit, or other type of formal personnel management review. Evaluation reports should include a discussion of issues, findings, and recommended and required actions. Documentation of follow-up on action items and evidence of satisfactory resolution of identified problems should be maintained with the evaluation reports. Evaluation reports and related documentation will be reviewed during on-site evaluations conducted by DPM. The following information should be documented in each report:

(1) Description of the scope and nature of evaluation;

(2) Description of the organization evaluated (e.g., name, location, number of employees, extent of personnel management authority);

(3) Names of evaluators and date of evaluation;

(4) Summary of the findings, recommendations, and any required actions; and

(5) Instructions regarding response required to the action items in the report.

D. Annual Summary Report.

(1) The servicing personnel offices and the Chief, Office of Administrative Support, shall provide the Chief, DPM, with an annual summary of personnel management evaluation activities for the previous fiscal year by December 1. The summary report should include a narrative section that discusses significant problem areas identified and improvements resulting from the evaluation program. In addition, the following items should be addressed:

     (a) Regulatory findings (i.e., violations of OPM, Department, or Service requirements);

     (b) Other findings that have implications for policy, systems, or procedures; and

     (c) Evaluation of overall effectiveness and efficiency of the personnel office's operations.

(2) The DPM will consider the contents of evaluation reports in the process of revising policies and procedures.

E. Servicing personnel offices should forward copies of OPM evaluation reports concerning their personnel management programs to DPM within 30 days of receipt.

Amended by Decision Memorandum, “Approval of Revisions to ~350 Directives to Remove Gender-Specific Pronouns,” 6/22/2022