2023 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey Coming in May

OPM has announced that the 2023 Federal Employee Viewpoint survey will be distributed in May.

The Office of Personnel Management will administer the 2023 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (FEVS) beginning in early May.

Survey invitations will be distributed to federal employees in two waves over a two week period. Specific dates of when the survey invitations will be distributed were not included in OPM’s announcement.

OPM said it will retain the core set of questions used in prior years, including those in regulation and the key indices of Employee Engagement, Global Satisfaction, and Performance Confidence. There will also be a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion in the survey, cornerstones of the Biden administration’s agenda.

Results from the 2022 FEVS indicated that federal employees’ overall satisfaction with their pay is declining. See Federal Employees’ Pay Satisfaction on the Decline.

Results from past years of the FEVS are available on OPM’s website

The text of OPM’s memo with the announcement about the 2023 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey is included below.

OPM Memo – 2023 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey

Memorandum for Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies

From: Kiran A. Ahuja, Director
Subject: 2023 OPM Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey

I’m very pleased and excited to share the news that the 2023 OPM Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (OPM FEVS) is on schedule to be administered early May. As you know, the OPM FEVS is the largest employer survey in the country, reaching more than 1.6 million employees. It remains one of the most powerful platforms for Federal employees to have a voice in sharing their work experience, critical to achieving effective agencies and responsive public service in times of significant change and adaptation. Providing agencies with a reliable method for capturing and analyzing employee feedback, benchmarking successes, and identifying emerging opportunities and challenges is key to retaining the best employees and recruiting talented new hires into the Federal government.

Following past practices, survey invitations will be rolled out in two waves over two consecutive weeks. Points of contact at each agency and the Chief Human Capital Officer (CHCO) Council are updated continually with the information you need to support your campaigns to encourage employee participation in the OPM FEVS. Strong survey participation is foundational to providing you with the highest quality data possible to support your agency action initiatives and governmentwide priorities, such as the President’s Management Agenda. Successful strategies to improve response rates include tracking survey participation during fielding, communication of actions taken and, most importantly, frequent, and ongoing communication from agency leadership expressing strong commitment for the survey and acknowledging its importance. Your support is key, and I deeply appreciate your ongoing efforts to engage your employees in the OPM FEVS.

Continued census and expanded eligibility supports wide access to the survey

The 2023 OPM FEVS will feature a full census of each agency’s eligible employees along with detailed reporting to the lowest office levels identified by each agency. Employee eligibility has been expanded in recent years, allowing agencies to include populations that were not previously considered eligible to participate in the survey (i.e., seasonal employees). More employees than ever before have a voice in the survey and the opportunity to impact change within agencies and across government.

OPM FEVS content improvements sustain performance strategies into the future

The employee work experience has evolved over the past several years, affecting many across the workforce. Responses to the pandemic have led to rapid changes and new experiences with technology, evolving perspectives on work-life balance, and workplace innovations including expanded work outside of a traditional office. Many employees have returned to traditional office settings and continue to adjust to a hybrid work environment. Assessing the employee work experience through the OPM FEVS is more critical than ever to achieve understanding of the new challenges employees and agencies face amidst this ever-changing work environment. Recognition of changes confronting employees and agencies have driven the addition of content to recent administrations of the OPM FEVS such as resilience, innovation, customer responsiveness, autonomy; Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA); and information sharing. Given the criticality of these topics to sustained performance in the future of the workforce, they will continue to be featured in 2023.

Maintained core content supports progress on Federal government priorities

The core set of questions used in prior years — including those in regulation and the key indices of Employee Engagement, Global Satisfaction, and Performance Confidence — will be retained. These critical items and indices trended over time provide agencies with consistent metrics to analyze workforce challenges. Combined with new, timely content, these core questions allow identification of solutions as we plan together toward a high performing future for Federal agencies. Employee Engagement and DEIA are featured measures in the President’s Management Agenda and cornerstones to achieving Priority 1, Strengthening and Empowering the Federal Workforce. OPM FEVS results provide an essential resource for assessing an emerging priority around organizational health. The survey framework, especially newly added measures, allow key insights into the performance potential of the workforce.

Communication of results and action capture the full value and power of the survey

The foundational value of the OPM FEVS in supporting a strong and empowered workforce is only fully realized when employees believe leadership at all levels of each agency value and engage in action on survey results. Please share results with the workforce, both good and bad. Let employees know that they are heard, their input matters, and steps are being taken to both celebrate wins and improve aspects of work and workplaces with clear challenges.

Achieving the full value of the OPM FEVS is a year-round process. Communicating past results and identifying actions taken in response to survey findings are essential to engaging employee participation in the 2023 survey. Full engagement and communication about the OPM FEVS from leadership at all levels will clearly show employees that their input is valued and can make a difference, boosting response rates and supporting widespread access to high quality data.

Accessing results and more

Prior year’s OPM FEVS results are posted as they become available on the FEVS website. Thank you for helping to make the OPM FEVS a success. If you have any questions about the upcoming survey, please contact Dr. Kim Wells, Survey Manager, at Kimberly.Wells@opm.gov or evs.internet@opm.gov.

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of FedSmith.com. He has over 20 years of combined experience in media and government services, having worked at two government contracting firms and an online news and web development company prior to his current role at FedSmith.