Accountability and the SES

Judging by recent reports, proposals and legislation, it appears the SES lacks many things it should have in droves, such as accountability, nimbleness and even guts.

But the problems look different from the inside.

“We’re not sick. We don’t have the flu or anything,” said Eddie Ribas, chief human capital officer of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and an SES member. “I do believe we need a checkup. There’s tinkering that has to be done to meet the demands of the future.”


Of the 890 SES members who left the government in fiscal 2014, just two were terminated or removed for discipline or performance, according to the Office of Personnel Management.


The statistics, Sisson said, can be misleading. Agencies tend to resolve personnel issues in easier ways, such as letting senior executives retire rather than be fired. Agencies may also require them to move. That’s one reason why SES members get touchy when the subject of mobility arises.

Sisson recalled a colleague who was told to pack up and move from Washington, D.C. to Atlanta.

“He said, ‘I know what they’re trying to do.’ He went to Atlanta and eventually retired on his own terms,” she recalled.

From Federal News Radio.