A lot of federal employees are eligible to retire or will be able to very soon. It has some executives at OPM and in human resources offices worried as agencies may lose a lot of corporate memory and experience that isn’t easily replaced.
And, according to the Partnership for Public Service, this is also true of the new Department of Homeland Security. Within the next five years, 59% of employees at the Federal Emergency Management Agency, 54% of the Coast Guard employees and 46% of the Customs Service employees will be eligible to retire.
When corporations merge, about half of the executives leave within the first year. Of course, government agencies reorganize all the time and the number of executives who leave in that situation doesn’t come close to the 50% figure.
Nevertheless, this merger is unlike most agency reorganizations. Different technology, different cultures, different attitudes, and a new mission different from “the way we used to do it in my agency” may all play a role in influencing how many of these feds will opt to retire when they can.
Of course, if the TSP C fund continues to lose money every year, those employees in the FERS retirement system may not have a choice. Those of you who have a long career ahead of you may have a bright future at DHS.