A recent Forrester Research study found that nearly one in five government employees report a low quality experience in the workforce. While 21% of public sector employees report a low-quality work experience, only 14% of private sector employees report a low-quality experience. On the flip side, private sector employees are 13% more likely to report a high-quality work experience.  A low-quality work experience can lead to challenges around morale, engagement, and career development. Moreover, this can lead to challenges recruiting a retaining talent and could trickle down to a lack of support and development of products and services. Indeed, the report found that only 34% of public sector employees were willing to recommend their organization’s products or services. On the other hand, this does create opportunities for strengthening human capital, improving processes, and developing technology solutions to increase engagement and effectiveness.

This report provides several strategies for increasing engagement. The two most cost-effective ways centered around processes and policies. The report found that removing barriers that sideline or hamper employees is one approach. Consultants may be able to benchmark against organizations that have undergone process improvements or review current state processes to identify barriers and simplify processes. A second approach was taking a more human centered lens to support productivity and fostering policies to support this. Telework, if managed effectively, could be one such example (and COVID has certainly provided sample data for this). Establishing policies that support employees, meet them where they are, and reward productivity can align efforts and increase engagement.

Reports like these provide interesting insights into partnerships with public sector clients and an added lens for approaching the work, supporting the client, and building lasting relationships.   

About the Author

Evan Piekara

Evan Piekara

With over twelve years of experience consulting and working in the government and nonprofit sectors. Evan started his nonprofit career as a member of Teach For America (TFA), where he served as a teacher, volunteer, and in operational support and training roles for the organization. He has supported BDO Public Sector in the launch of their management consulting practice and has provided strategy and operations, human capital, and information technology support to government and nonprofit clients. At BDO Public Sector, Evan led efforts building internal practice recruiting processes including interview questions, cases, and candidate evaluation criteria and developed their Graduate Advisor internship program.