While the federal workforce has many talented and hard-working people, there are too many low- performers. Such employees are a wasted resource and an incentive program to improve their performance is urgently needed. However, remedying poor performance in the federal government is so onerous that many managers resist putting employees on performance plans and even fewer pursue their ultimate termination.
To address this, agencies should be required each year to identify and label 3 percent of their employees as lowest performing employees. These employees would have to be put on performance plans tracking their performance. Significant efforts should be undertaken to assist these employees in improving their performance. However, if timely performance improvement is not documented, such employees should be terminated. This would provide appropriate incentives and opportunities for low performers to improve their performance and it would improve moral and efficiency.