Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Biden seeks to limit employee turnover among federal contractors

WASHINGTON (AP) – On Thursday, President Joe Biden signs a decree aimed at limiting turnover for federal service contract workers, offering them first-of-order options when contracts change hands.

According to the order, when a federal service contract is transferred from one contractor to another, employees on the previous contract who did their job well should be given the opportunity to keep their jobs with the new contractor. The order covers more than 2 million federal contractors who do everything from building maintenance to operating technical equipment.

The White House said the order would reduce turnover among workers in critical support functions for federal operations. It aims to prevent disruption and the cost of recruiting and training workers to fill positions that existing contractors are doing well. The administration says the order also protects experienced, well-performing employees by providing them with job opportunities that extend the duration of a single government contract and avoiding unnecessary transfers.

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Administration officials said recruiting, hiring and training replacement personnel could cost up to 20% of a worker’s wages, and that the order would bring significant savings to the federal government. Officials did not immediately assess the cost savings.

According to the White House, there are a disproportionate number of women and people of color among federal service contractors, and this order will help the administration achieve justice goals.

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