Improving Employee/Labor Relations

  Memo #4 of Strengthening the Federal Workforce

Summary: Federal labor unions play a vital role in the effective management of the federal workforce. As such, it is critical that the President and Congress take proactive steps to improve and maintain the Federal Government’s relationship with labor representatives, especially in light of the ongoing challenges associated with reform efforts in human resource management.

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Recommended Actions

1. Union cooperation should be sought in implementing comprehensive human resource management reform efforts. Reform cannot be successfully implemented without the cooperation of federal employee unions. 

2. The National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations (NCFLMR) is an excellent avenue to increase overall coordinative efforts between federal management and employee unions – its use should be encouraged. The continued use of NCFLMR should be encouraged, as should the use of labor/management councils at the agency level.

3. Federal management, unions, and other interested groups should begin a coordinated effort to improve the image of the federal workforce. Such an effort will enhance recruitment and selection efforts as well as dispel inaccurate perceptions of the federal workforce. The NCFLMR should coordinate these efforts in cooperation with the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA), the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA), the Partnership for Public Service, and other public service organizations.