For the eleventh year in a row, NASA has been declared the best large federal agency to work for, according to the latest rankings by the Partnership for Public Service.
The Department of Health and Human Services and the intelligence community were close behind in the top 10 list for large agencies, unveiled Wednesday. The rankings, updated each year, give insight into how satisfied federal employees are with the job they do and the organization they work for.
“When we think of the federal government, it is easy to think of it as one place, or even one idea, but we would be wrong, as over 2 million people work all over the country in a variety of jobs,” said Bronwen Latimer, Top Workplaces editor of The Washington Post, which partnered with the Partnership on this year’s rankings.
Agencies are grappling with stabilizing their workforces post-pandemic. Federal employees face uncertainty in whether they can continue to telework, whether they will see a pay raise high enough to offset inflation and whether their agency can hire fast enough to addressing understaffing.
Union leaders in the government and federal employees in forums online have said it’s not unusual for dissatisfied employees to look at neighboring agencies who may have attractive openings, special salary rates or fully remote work.
In the latest government-wide Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey by the Office of Personnel Management, overall satisfaction is at the lowest point in five years. At the same time, 91% of respondents in the same survey agreed it’s important to them that their work be perceived as having contributed to the common good.
“Our government faces daunting challenges and tremendous opportunities in the coming year at a time when public trust in government remains low,” said Max Stier, president of the Partnership, in a statement.
Among large federal agencies, there was not much shuffling in the top five with the Department of Commerce and Department of Veterans Affairs ranking highly again this year. The Department of the Air Force was the only branch agency to make it into the top 10 for this category.
For mid-size agencies, the Government Accountability Office again clinched the top spot with the National Science Foundation, Securities and Exchange Commission, General Services Administration and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission following.
The Congressional Budget Office topped the list for small agencies, followed by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, Office of Special Counsel, National Endowment for the Humanities and the Federal Labor Relations Authority.
Only the top 10 rankings are currently viewable. The Partnership, in collaboration with the Post and Boston Consulting Group, will release the full rankings next month.
Molly Weisner is a staff reporter for Federal Times where she covers labor, policy and contracting pertaining to the government workforce. She made previous stops at USA Today and McClatchy as a digital producer, and worked at The New York Times as a copy editor. Molly majored in journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.