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GSBS  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, January 8, 2020 10:37:47 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
I personally know a few people who are not veterans without a master or PhD degree, or related work experience that are hired at GS-11/12 positions. I am thinking about applying for a position, but where I live the federal employees is about hiring families and friends. They know they are getting away with it because it is so hard to report prohibited personnel practices.
I worked with an Agency that hired non U.S. Citizens in GS 12 & 13 positions. Some didn't speak English yet have been here in America for years

frankgonzalez  
#2 Posted : Thursday, January 9, 2020 4:20:25 AM(UTC)
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I hear this complaint frequently, yet when the facts are looked at, rarely is there an actual issue, just someone upset they didn't get selected. Plenty of complaints at the EEOC and MSPB where people claim to be better qualified due to education or time at an agency or in the federal government, and they usually lose. Those that win typically can point to things beyond that to prove to be better qualified...ie expert witnesses, actual experience (ie selectee has never done the job, whereas the complainant has done it well for several years and won awards for their work in this area, etc).

If a job series doesn't have a education requirement, then people without a degree (let alone a graduate level education) can get hired into those positions with their experience.

On the reverse side, I have seen plenty of people with graduate degrees and PhDs who shouldn't be in their positions but are simply because the hiring manager considered those more valuable than actually being able to do the job. I've seen PhDs shoot themselves in the foot in an interview but denigrating people who don't have formal educations (or worse, those who don't have a PhD) failing to realize, only one person on the interview panel has a PhD, and the selecting official "only" had a Master's degree....but they also had several patents to their name.

Once you get to the GS12 level and above, education becomes less important as there is no education equivalent you can use to get there. There may be a requirement for the job series (ie Engineering positions need an Engineering degree, a Lawyer position needs a law degree AND passing the bar, etc), but outside of that, experience is the driver for the higher grades.

I was at a Executive Training day for people considering the SES, and when I raised the issue of not having a degree, let alone a graduate degree, the response was "There is no degree requirement for the SES, only the ability to get the job done. The series may have an education requirement, but that only drives the series not the Senior Executive Service as a whole. So don't let a lack of a degree dissuade you from trying."

So...if the people hired are incompetent, that is the issue, regardless of if they have a degree or not.

Of course, I say this as a GS14 in my field...with only a couple of useless Associate Degrees (CCAF for those who know it!) unrelated to the field, and 23+ years experience doing this specific work.
You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
thanks 7 users thanked frankgonzalez for this useful post.
GWPDA on 1/9/2020(UTC), Endless Summer on 1/9/2020(UTC), country mouse on 1/9/2020(UTC), Unknown007 on 1/9/2020(UTC), AuditWorld on 1/10/2020(UTC), King_Fed on 1/13/2020(UTC), Kenaz on 1/31/2020(UTC)
FS0201  
#3 Posted : Thursday, January 9, 2020 12:39:32 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
They know they are getting away with it because it is so hard to report prohibited personnel practices.


I agree with everything Frank said, but will add that it is not difficult to report a PPP. OSC has jurisdiction to investigate and take action regarding violations of the Prohibited Personnel Practices, and anyone can file a complaint here: https://osc.gov/Pages/File-Complaint.aspx . One might also go through other venues such as the IG, which will investigate if deemed worthy of their efforts.

The problem is that while it is easy to make the allegations, and I have worked some that resulted in either a removal or retirement/resignation, most allegations don’t come to anything because the allegation doesn’t hold water.
The excuse of, "I read it on FederalSoup..." won't work. Please do your due diligence.
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King_Fed on 1/13/2020(UTC)
FrankJr  
#4 Posted : Thursday, January 9, 2020 4:31:41 PM(UTC)
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A city of 30,000 people with one employer of 2,500 people can and does result in favoritism. The one employer is easily 25% of the economy of the city, let alone the metropolitan area of the city. Not out of the ordinary for the husband, the wife and the three children to work at the one employer. Not out of the ordinary for hiring and firing and promotions and performance to be a function of favoritism. The hiring managers realize the "good fit" is in fact the local hire. The local hire will continue with the organization for decades but the not local hire will continue with the organization only long enough to change both jobs and cities. The scenario exists for political reasons more often than not so the fix would also need to be political. No congressional representative will allow 2,500 job be moved from one city due to favoritism. OPM and OMB are well aware of the most extreme examples but are clueless on a fix for the issue. Regardless, don't hesitate to apply for a federal job; every now and then the employer overrun with favoritism hires an oddball candidate to prove no favoritism.
GWPDA  
#5 Posted : Thursday, January 9, 2020 5:23:20 PM(UTC)
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Who lives in a town of 30,000? In the year 2020, who imagines they're going to grow up and be employed in the town of 30,000 where they were born, AND be a GS employee? The only ones I can think of are NPS seasonal employees and folks who work for the Postal Service. Everybody else? Not terribly likely.

The Federal Government does not position its worksites to benefit its workforce. It does not benefit the government to be the single employer in an area, for all the real and imagined reasons listed above. If there is a concentration of one agency's jobs in one location it's because the work is in that location - CPB and ICE jobs tend to be near borders. Work at NARA tends to be in one of the 8 NARA main locations. Want to work for the Army? Well, there you've got more range, but it's hardly a matter of each town having a built-in Army employment center.

As has been repeated endlessly, most complaints of favoritism or special preference don't go anywhere because the complaints cannot be supported by fact. And they most certainly can't be supported by rumour, gossip or envy. Apply for the jobs you want and work to be qualified to get them. They probably won't be in your backyard.
frankgonzalez  
#6 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 4:11:38 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: GWPDA Go to Quoted Post
Who lives in a town of 30,000? In the year 2020, who imagines they're going to grow up and be employed in the town of 30,000 where they were born, AND be a GS employee? The only ones I can think of are NPS seasonal employees and folks who work for the Postal Service. Everybody else? Not terribly likely.

The Federal Government does not position its worksites to benefit its workforce. It does not benefit the government to be the single employer in an area, for all the real and imagined reasons listed above. If there is a concentration of one agency's jobs in one location it's because the work is in that location - CPB and ICE jobs tend to be near borders. Work at NARA tends to be in one of the 8 NARA main locations. Want to work for the Army? Well, there you've got more range, but it's hardly a matter of each town having a built-in Army employment center.

As has been repeated endlessly, most complaints of favoritism or special preference don't go anywhere because the complaints cannot be supported by fact. And they most certainly can't be supported by rumour, gossip or envy. Apply for the jobs you want and work to be qualified to get them. They probably won't be in your backyard.
I will say that military bases tend to be the major employer in small towns. Alamogordo, NM...Holloman AFB or WSMR. Minot ND...Minot AFB. Panhandle of FL...Pensacola NAS, Eglin AFB, Hurlburt Field, and Tyndall AFB (plus a few other military sites sprinkled around). Yuba City, CA...Beale AFB. And so on.. Hell, Colorado Springs, CO has Peterson AFB, the AF Academy, Ft Carson, Schriever AFB The military tends to place its bases (not always, but many, if not most) in small towns. Cheaper land, less things to mess up if something goes "boom" when it isn't supposed to, etc. So in this locations, I can see family dynasties of federal employment occurring. Some National Guard units I've seen have been really bad in this regard. May not be favoritism, but it does cause a second glance when you see the same name everywhere.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
tic32003  
#7 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 8:37:13 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
I personally know a few people who are not veterans without a master or PhD degree, or related work experience that are hired at GS-11/12 positions.


And?

Not all positions require a degree, regardless of the grade level. In fact, I'd estimate that the majority of positions don't have an educational requirement.

I see absolutely nothing in your post that would even hint at a prohibited personnel practice.
Endless Summer  
#8 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 9:22:15 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
Say there is a position for a GS-11 HR Specialist, you advertise that job as no education requirements to hire your relative or friend. Then 2 month later another GS-11 HR Specialist position opens up, you advertise that job as master degree or ph.d because whomever you know has that requirement.

..."


I just did a brief search on USAJobs for Job Series 0201. I only looked at a handful of the 247 postings, but I saw none that required a Master's or Ph.D. Sure, you can substitute education for experience in a few of them.

You've posted pretty much the same post on a few occasions, so I get that you feel like you've been mistreated but I don't think you're looking at this objectively and there's benefit in continuing to feel like you're the victim.

Good Luck
FS0201  
#9 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 10:55:09 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Endless Summer Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
Say there is a position for a GS-11 HR Specialist, you advertise that job as no education requirements to hire your relative or friend. Then 2 month later another GS-11 HR Specialist position opens up, you advertise that job as master degree or ph.d because whomever you know has that requirement.

..."


I just did a brief search on USAJobs for Job Series 0201. I only looked at a handful of the 247 postings, but I saw none that required a Master's or Ph.D. Sure, you can substitute education for experience in a few of them.


This is not how it works. I have spent my career in the 0200 series, and I have never seen an 0200 position that required a masters or doctorate; applicants are able to use education to meet the minimum requirements, but that is for many positions (and not for all grades).

In order to announce the position as having a positive education requirement, there needs to be a determination by OPM that the duties of the position cannot be performed without the prescribed minimum level of education. Think attorneys, nurses, engineers, doctors, educationalists, historians, architects, mathematicians. etc.... The closest I have seen to an positive educational requirement for an HR position are some appellate type roles (defending personnel actions), where it is noted that a JD would be beneficial - but is not required.

Edited by user Friday, January 10, 2020 11:06:05 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Included additional field with positive education requirement

The excuse of, "I read it on FederalSoup..." won't work. Please do your due diligence.
mallen  
#10 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 11:00:12 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: GSBS Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
I personally know a few people who are not veterans without a master or PhD degree, or related work experience that are hired at GS-11/12 positions. I am thinking about applying for a position, but where I live the federal employees is about hiring families and friends. They know they are getting away with it because it is so hard to report prohibited personnel practices.
I worked with an Agency that hired non U.S. Citizens in GS 12 & 13 positions. Some didn't speak English yet have been here in America for years



Your fluency in foreign languages must be an asset to you in finding work. Clearly you have had in depth conversation with these people to determine that they are not us citizens and dont have critical experience or job skills to qualify for the positions. Obviously you would not just assume so based on their accent, or skin color.

Edited by user Friday, January 10, 2020 11:16:48 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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frankgonzalez on 1/14/2020(UTC)
djp  
#11 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 5:45:37 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: frankgonzalez Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: GWPDA Go to Quoted Post
Who lives in a town of 30,000? In the year 2020, who imagines they're going to grow up and be employed in the town of 30,000 where they were born, AND be a GS employee? The only ones I can think of are NPS seasonal employees and folks who work for the Postal Service. Everybody else? Not terribly likely.

The Federal Government does not position its worksites to benefit its workforce. It does not benefit the government to be the single employer in an area, for all the real and imagined reasons listed above. If there is a concentration of one agency's jobs in one location it's because the work is in that location - CPB and ICE jobs tend to be near borders. Work at NARA tends to be in one of the 8 NARA main locations. Want to work for the Army? Well, there you've got more range, but it's hardly a matter of each town having a built-in Army employment center.

As has been repeated endlessly, most complaints of favoritism or special preference don't go anywhere because the complaints cannot be supported by fact. And they most certainly can't be supported by rumour, gossip or envy. Apply for the jobs you want and work to be qualified to get them. They probably won't be in your backyard.
I will say that military bases tend to be the major employer in small towns. Alamogordo, NM...Holloman AFB or WSMR. Minot ND...Minot AFB. Panhandle of FL...Pensacola NAS, Eglin AFB, Hurlburt Field, and Tyndall AFB (plus a few other military sites sprinkled around). Yuba City, CA...Beale AFB. And so on.. Hell, Colorado Springs, CO has Peterson AFB, the AF Academy, Ft Carson, Schriever AFB The military tends to place its bases (not always, but many, if not most) in small towns. Cheaper land, less things to mess up if something goes "boom" when it isn't supposed to, etc. So in this locations, I can see family dynasties of federal employment occurring. Some National Guard units I've seen have been really bad in this regard. May not be favoritism, but it does cause a second glance when you see the same name everywhere.



First off...in many cases the bases were there before most people. They didn’t get the land because it was cheap and rural.

The bases were needed in part to have large areas of land for trainingorits sn airport....thus many don’t want yo live near there because of nouse


There has not been a new base created in the continental USA in years other than an air guard unit using a commercial airport.




Yes many of these training bases are large employers in small communities.

As a result of this you have selection priorities like military spouse

In the real world a lot of this has to do with professional network and “ nepotism” of friends hiring friends or peop,e they know well.

As for degrees..history lesson here...


In the mid 80s is when the transition started for many jobs requiring a degree as a preliminary job screener. Those people now in their early 50s and older could work there way up without a bachelors degree.

Is not official practice but in the military you now need to have a masters to get promotion to O5. O5 is about a high 13/low 14 position. Some applying For GS 14 orhigher are going to need a masters or higher unless they know people and have built a reputation. Im not intimated by phDs just as smart as them. In fed govt outside of a few positions or areas, phDs are unnessacery. So do e hiring mgr will ignore applicants even if qualified if they don’t have a masters.






djp  
#12 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 5:59:23 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: FS0201 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
They know they are getting away with it because it is so hard to report prohibited personnel practices.


I agree with everything Frank said, but will add that it is not difficult to report a PPP. OSC has jurisdiction to investigate and take action regarding violations of the Prohibited Personnel Practices, and anyone can file a complaint here: https://osc.gov/Pages/File-Complaint.aspx . One might also go through other venues such as the IG, which will investigate if deemed worthy of their efforts.

The problem is that while it is easy to make the allegations, and I have worked some that resulted in either a removal or retirement/resignation, most allegations don’t come to anything because the allegation doesn’t hold water.


Earlier this week I was talking with coworkers about some stuff regarding what our office and past experiences and would detail assignments benefit some. You ne m ntioned that with many jobs applied in 95% of the situations they already someone in mind for the promotion.

We have a job opening with one of our people transferred agencies this week and wondered if the position would be modified some. The duties if they remain the same will be highly specialized and there are no who you already know type of potential applicants.


mallen  
#13 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 6:54:24 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
I think it just depends on the geographical region, population, and culture. Definitely not upset and not interest in the job. Maybe your office is more scrutinized when it comes to hiring. When you work in an office environment where there are generations of employees who were hired because of favoritism relating to relatives or friends. Then it becomes a big problem, because it becomes part the culture. From working in such environment, why is such behavior allowed?

This happened to me, I applied for a job at my office. I had the education and experience, but hr did not refer my application because they said there was a best qualified candidate. The person turn out she had to experience at all, and knew nothing about the job. I had to train the individual, yet I was told not best qualified.


If this keeps happening, review your resume. There may be some issue that prevents hr from accurately determine your qualifications.
FS0201  
#14 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 6:56:26 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
The one in my hometown requires either a master or Ph.D. I did trying applying in the past base on experience, but hr tells me doesn't meet educational requirements.


I would be interested to see the announcement for that, if you would like to share - either posting of through private message.
The excuse of, "I read it on FederalSoup..." won't work. Please do your due diligence.
Endless Summer  
#15 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 2:51:23 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: FS0201 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
The one in my hometown requires either a master or Ph.D. I did trying applying in the past base on experience, but hr tells me doesn't meet educational requirements.


I would be interested to see the announcement for that, if you would like to share - either posting of through private message.


Yeah, post a link. Here's what the OPM says about minimum education requirements for the 0200 series...
https://www.opm.gov/poli...-standards/#url=0200-ndx

Spoiler alert, there are no education requirements for any grade or sub series in the 0200 field.

Not trying to be a d%^k, but are your posts an example of your writing, attitude, and general communication skills? Look at the sentence in the above quote, do you not see any problems with it? If your resume is written in the same manner, I can understand why you are not moving up.

Post the link to the job announcement.
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FS0201 on 1/11/2020(UTC)
FrankJr  
#16 Posted : Sunday, January 12, 2020 8:13:07 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: GWPDA Go to Quoted Post
Who lives in a town of 30,000? In the year 2020, who imagines they're going to grow up and be employed in the town of 30,000 where they were born, AND be a GS employee? The only ones I can think of are NPS seasonal employees and folks who work for the Postal Service. Everybody else? Not terribly likely.

The Federal Government does not position its worksites to benefit its workforce. It does not benefit the government to be the single employer in an area, for all the real and imagined reasons listed above. If there is a concentration of one agency's jobs in one location it's because the work is in that location - CPB and ICE jobs tend to be near borders. Work at NARA tends to be in one of the 8 NARA main locations. Want to work for the Army? Well, there you've got more range, but it's hardly a matter of each town having a built-in Army employment center.

As has been repeated endlessly, most complaints of favoritism or special preference don't go anywhere because the complaints cannot be supported by fact. And they most certainly can't be supported by rumour, gossip or envy. Apply for the jobs you want and work to be qualified to get them. They probably won't be in your backyard.


The federal government does position its work sites to benefit the politicians; and in turn the constituents of the politicians.

Complaints of favoritism don't go anywhere due to the retaliation associated with the complaints of favoritism. Be it public sector or private sector, the investigations of corruption in the workplaces focus solely on the likely outcome in a court case. Nothing more detrimental to the process than a judgement to the disadvantage of the employer. Few have both the time and the money to pursue the issue and the employer is well aware of the predicament for the employee.
ninem  
#17 Posted : Sunday, January 12, 2020 2:14:05 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: djp Go to Quoted Post

...
Is not official practice but in the military you now need to have a masters to get promotion to O5. O5 is about a high 13/low 14 position. Some applying For GS 14 orhigher are going to need a masters or higher unless they know people and have built a reputation. Im not intimated by phDs just as smart as them. In fed govt outside of a few positions or areas, phDs are unnessacery. So do e hiring mgr will ignore applicants even if qualified if they don’t have a masters.


For anyone reading this and looking for jobs in the 2210 series, it probably doesn't apply as much as in other job series. I've received several GS-14 offers and my only education is a bachelors from a barely accredited degree mill. The government hurts for good tech talent because you can make twice+ as much in the private sector
mallen  
#18 Posted : Sunday, January 12, 2020 3:26:15 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: mallen Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Unknown User Go to Quoted Post
I think it just depends on the geographical region, population, and culture. Definitely not upset and not interest in the job. Maybe your office is more scrutinized when it comes to hiring. When you work in an office environment where there are generations of employees who were hired because of favoritism relating to relatives or friends. Then it becomes a big problem, because it becomes part the culture. From working in such environment, why is such behavior allowed?

This happened to me, I applied for a job at my office. I had the education and experience, but hr did not refer my application because they said there was a best qualified candidate. The person turn out she had to experience at all, and knew nothing about the job. I had to train the individual, yet I was told not best qualified.


If this keeps happening, review your resume. There may be some issue that prevents hr from accurately determine your qualifications.



My resume is well written, the problem is the selecting official has establish a friendship with HR Specialist to say can you just refer me John Doe resume. The hr Specialist works directly at the office instead of a centralize federal hr department in another state. I find it strange my application gets referred by out of state hr Specialist for the same position, but mark not qualified with the in town hr Specialist. I am moving to another state for the same job.


There are avenues that you can persue. I don't know how its Done in your agency, but when I was at DOL, I could send complaints to our agencies inspector general. If the abuse was really as eggregious as you say, it would be literally trivial to substantiate. All they would have to do is look at the pool of applicants, and they could see. But most especially if they emailed each other about their conspiracy. But it might also turn up that these people WERE actually more qualified. If that happened, they wouldn't tell you any details and you would simply think "they got away with it" and OIG is useless. Maybe you don't know about that person's disability they got in the military, because that's protected information. Or the agreement when they sued the agency over sex or racial discrimination, and the settlement that gave them priority in the hiring process.

DaVinci95  
#19 Posted : Monday, January 13, 2020 7:28:10 AM(UTC)
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Keep in mind that there is no Congressionally-mandated requirement to hire the absolute "best qualified" candidate. Unless the agency mandates some kind of scoring system, the hiring official can hire anyone off of the cert for any reason, provided it doesn't violate prohibited practices and that the candidate has in fact met the minimum requirements for the position (HR does occasionally let unqualified candidates slip through). They don't have to compare who has the most or highest degrees. They don't have to measure who has spent the most time in the series. So even if you have a PhD and 10 years more experience than the selectee, you would still have to prove that your exclusion was due to a prohibited practice or that the candidate doesn't meet the minimum requirements.

Personal experience and recommendations can play a factor. I have worked with several people that I would hire in a heartbeat without looking at anyone else on the cert. I have also worked with a few that I would not hire even if they were the only name on the cert. If someone on my staff recommended a candidate I'd take it into consideration. I wouldn't put much weight behind a familial connection, but I could see how that might play differently in a small town facility. As frustrating as it may be for the unconnected candidates, as long as the family member has met the minimum requirements and made the cert they are eligible to be hired.

Edited by user Monday, January 13, 2020 7:28:48 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

djp  
#20 Posted : Monday, January 13, 2020 6:14:55 PM(UTC)

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Another side issue.....

In smaller cities and the agency is the only game in town or the big fish you get a culture of cliques and friends of friends

Previously I worked at a VA hospital in an administrative position. A few things I saw...

Background—the city mainly had the VA and two other hospitals. One of them thry had acontract with for specialty referrals. The hospital was a lower level godpital that couldn’t handle stroke patients for example so they would go to the private hospital. When stabilized they would transfer to VA for care

1 in specialty area people in VA knew the other people at the other hospitals doing the same thing. For some to help grow their career would go in VA hit a ceiling thrn go private fir 3 yrs then come back by passing an employee who is anchored in a position till retirement. People know a lot of others in the application process...both good and bad.

2 cliques form. I came as an outsider who wasn’t from the area and didn’t know the people who were working there for 10-20 years and from don’t want to change how things were done. This is also a driver in locals who come in. If they don’t fit in they leave. People who come in plan to be there till retirement just working there way up.


#2 is common with other agencies when it comes to change...the middle management level. They feel they can hold out because senior leadership tend to move on in 3 yrs. thus new leadership will com in with new ideas do why bother changing.

I’ve also had jobs that were created by national HQ imposed on lower level.

In agencies you have a national HQ, 6-10 regional offices, then 20+ area offices. The job was at the area office level and I was looked at asan outsider the clique which caused problems. My job had regular communication with regional and HQ when the office was generally autonomous outside of the director of the area . Some kind of looked at me as a spy.







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