How happy in their jobs are government workers? Well, the sovereign answer to that question would be: “Who cares?” They have steady work and, for most of them, it is all indoors with no heavy lifting. And they practically have to commit a felony to get fired.
Still … the question can be made interesting by asking in which of our great bureaucracies are the employees least happy? Or most unhappy. Whatever.
As Eric Katz of Government Executive writes, “the five large agencies (those with more than 800 employees) that have seen the biggest drop-offs in satisfaction since 2010” are:
1) Homeland Security Department - 15 percent drop
2) Treasury Department - 12 percent drop
3 )Environmental Protection Agency - 11 percent drop
4) Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency - 10 percent drop
5) Federal Communications Commission - 10 percent drop
It is more than a little troubling that the most dissatisfaction is within the Department of Homeland Security. These people are, after all, supposed to keep us … ah, secure. And if they are moping around because they are unhappy at work, no telling what they might miss.
Their boss, Jeh Johnson, is: "disappointed that our efforts to improve employee satisfaction at DHS were not reflected departmentwide in this year’s results of the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey … but not discouraged. We will not give up. We know that improving employee satisfaction across a 22-component, 240,000-person department takes time.”
And, Johnson says, “The men and women of the Department of Homeland Security are our greatest asset, and I and the other senior leaders of DHS are committed to improving employee satisfaction. We will continue our efforts to make DHS a place where all employees feel valued and where their hard work is recognized and rewarded.”
Talk like that can depress the morale of even Mary Poppins.