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DHS Employees Unsatisfied With Work Environment

March 28, 2012 by  

DHS Employees Unsatisfied With Work Environment
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s employees are below average when it comes to job satisfaction. Q

Imagine a career that gave you the opportunity to spend each and every day working to thwart a nameless, faceless enemy that you are told by your superiors is an immediate threat to your safety, culture and way of life. Now imagine if much of the population believed that you and your agency were the real threat to the American lifestyle. Welcome to a career at the Department of Homeland Security.

According to reports, morale within the ranks of the Federal government agency designed to protect Americans from perceived threats in a post-9/11 United States has been in bad shape since 2004. That year, a White House-sponsored survey showed that 56 percent of the agency’s employees said they were satisfied with their jobs, compared to 68 percent for government employees overall, according to Federal Computer Week.

Last Thursday, Congress heard testimony from the DHS Subcommittee on Oversight, Investigations and Management focused on the ongoing interagency battle with low employee morale. From the testimony lawmakers learned that DHS employees were averagely satisfied with the rate of pay they receive, but had less positive attitudes about the work they do. Subcommittee chairman Representative Michael McCaul (R-Texas) said that while the employees generally believe in their mission, they are unhappy with the leadership within the agency.

The Washington Post reports DHS has put into place a three-pronged strategy to address management and workforce issues, according to Catherine Emerson, DHS’ chief human capital officer. The first aspect mandates that all top officials prioritize employee engagement. The second element promotes better employee communication, training and employee recognition. The third part strengthens the leadership skills among DHS management.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

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  • Sirian

    Hmmm, lets see here. . . 1. “The first aspect mandates that all top officials prioritize employee engagement.” In simple terms, set new rules and restrictions on employees so as to emphasize the betterment of the entire department along with embellishing the top officials for further recognition and advancements. 2. “The second element promotes better employee communication, training and employee recognition. Here we have nothing more than developing training that will ensue in producing a new method of distributing brighter, shinier and larger trophies. 3. “The third part strengthens the leadership skills among DHS management.” This final segment will enable further management training on all levels, across the board, to achieve more secure methods to guard against disruptions within management on a personal level. Simply put – CYA. Once this is completed the morale level within DHS will rise to an all time high. Sure it will . . . :(

    • Jazzabelle

      No, Sirian, it’s not about trophies. “Employee engagement” and “better communication” and “leadership” are code words for increased surveillance of the DHS employees. Find out who’s dissatisfied and why, so we can con them into supporting us better …. and if that doesn’t work, we’ll know whom to blacklist.

      • Sirian

        “and if that doesn’t work, we’ll know whom to blacklist.” Yep, without any doubt at all that falls under #3 – CYA. . . :)

    • ChristyK

      Better training = better indoctrination

    • Bruce

      the whippings will continue until moral improves.
      Maybe the employees know they are doing things that are basically and fundamentally wrong, and are thus unhappy.

    • Michael

      Just remember, the beatings will continue until morale improves……..

    • Rocky Night

      Maybe a contest? The one that puts the most Americans in jail wins a new shiny trophy.

  • stopspending4

    They seem to forget step 4, the most important and probably the only action that will improve moral and security for the rest of us. Replace the top leadership of DHS!!! People get dissatisfied with their jobs when the leadership is poor, not because communication is poor. The US people do not like what the department is doing or not doing and that dislike is felt by the employees. I am sure their jobs are hel.

    • Michael

      The Department of Homeland Security has become a joke, as is the Department of Justice(sic). Furlough the head and let the rest join the unemployment lines.

  • Wumingren

    The article would have been more valuable had it included direct quotes from disgruntled employees describing exactly what they are disgruntled about. What I see is HSA attempting to do damage control by directing discussion toward morale boosting incentives, and casting blame on the American public for taking umbrage over the poorly conceived HSA screening process.

    I suspect that employees are less demoralized by a lack of public trust and affection, and more demoralized by being thwarted in their mission to protect the public by the Obama administration. Were I an HSA employee, I would be upset that I am tasked with protecting my fellow Americans from foreign enemies, when in actuality, we are in greater peril from domestic enemies operating under color of authority. I would be demoralized by the willful sabotage of my mission by stooges taking orders from the usurper, Obama.

  • s c

    They have leaders at the DHS? That’s quite a claim. Is this agency part of what some want us to think is a social contract? Or, is this just another example of a braindead nanny state?
    Napolitano sure is a “good” example of what happens when that leader is a refugee from a state where common sense
    is ignored and common criminals are treated better than the LEGAL, law-abiding citizens of that state [Arizona].
    Sorry, but I’m fresh out of sympathy for gubmint employees. I have no sympathy for a prez who creates his own problems and expects America to pay for his non-leadership and his puppet behavior.
    You don’t like working for DHS? TOUGH! Did you figure out that the DHS is a prime example of a non-functional gubmint agency that has NO plans for doing its job?
    There’s always McDonald’s and Burger King. Maybe you can re-trained at a local school (if you chase a degree, that is). Maybe you can float a loan from the loan king in the White House. Maybe you can cry in your beer. Write a book, folks. Uncle Scam won’t hep you.

  • http://none jay

    Need to fix that by getting rid of that bizarre Nappy. Put some body competent in there. Nov is coming Bobo.

  • Thor

    Folks appointed by a President–any President–are appointed to complete a two-sided agenda. First, there is the stated objective of the agency to which they are appointed; and, secondly but most importantly, there is the political goal of molding an instrument of political will.

    When people see the duty entrusted to them by the American people subverted by nebulous political forces–depriving peaceful, law-abiding Americans of their personal and civil rights, for example–they have a negative, gut-reaction to the leaders asking them to do it. This is especially true when they know the leadership will turn on them in an instant for not marching to a proper drum beat. Recent whistle-blowing by a DOJ lawyer is a fine testament to the viscous attacks that will be leveled at internal dissent.

    In such a work environment low morale is predictable.

  • Bob Johnson

    government never does anything well, nuff said?

    • Les

      “It’s a damned good thing we don’t get all the government we pay for.” – Will Rogers

  • Donald York

    Training these guards on the border with Mexico to look the other way when the jumpers cross illegally is not my idea of homeland security.
    Obama would have better served the country if he had replaced Janet Napolitano with someone like General Pertraeus and sent her into retirement. Bringing our troops home and stationing them on our borders and giving them authority to capture illegal crossers and FORCING ICE to deport them back where they came from. Having all the cameras and expensive equipment dont mean a thing if we look the other way.

    • Joe H

      The problem is they HAVE to look the other way to catch the REAL crooks!! They have to look at DC!!!

  • Sean Steele

    They realize now who the real terrorists are and hopefully will now perform thier duties and eradicate the problem along with the rest of the asshat clown brigade. Or mayby seeing their boss every day took its toll

  • Adollarsworkapeenyspay

    So, if their that dissatisfied then step aside and give another stiff a chance to feed his family!! “while the employees generally believe in their mission, they are unhappy with the leadership within the agency”.. So, they linger on.. For the pay.. Typical freeloader.

  • http://PersonalLiberty Alondra

    Yep, they are too busy. Fourth year they are investigating sheriff Joe Arpayo instead of ObaMao’s eligibility, his betrayal and treason of American and the amount of the disgust and sicken corruptions in his administration including him and his buddy holder.

  • oh oh

    Wrong leadership, policies, priorities, missions, targets… of course it will affect morale. Respect and self-respect are lost when ideologically driven incompetence overcomes common sense.


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