Doesn’t seem fair. Does it to you?
We’ve surveyed Public Works readers for a decade on city, county, special district, township, and state compensation. Beginning in 2008, bit by bit, drop, by drop, the benefits that offset lower public-sector wages are diminishing.
Recession-induced staffing cutbacks mean many of you are juggling more balls than ever before. Tax revenue decreases prompted governments to push more benefit costs onto employees. Even if you’ve received annual salary increases over the last couple years, financially you’re probably treading water.
I’m not sure why the following press release launched this rant except that I don’t know many public- OR private-sector employees who will have two post-retirement income streams. Do you? Also, if local governments don't or can't offer a similar deal, they could lost top-notch talent to federal agencies.
Here’s the release:
Why Job-Hunting Millennials could Find a
Perfect Match with the Federal Government
The greying of the federal-government workforce could create a hiring crisis if a new generation declines to fill the breach. Most young people look elsewhere, finding no motivation to vie for positions that strike them as more dreary than dazzling.
“Millennials want to work someplace cool, like Google, or at least for a company with a recognizable name,” says Ann Vanderslice, president and CEO of Retirement Planning Strategies. “Not that the federal government isn’t recognizable. But it seems bureaucratic to them, with lots of rules and structures.”
According to the Partnership for Public Service, millennials account for 23% of the U.S. workforce but only 7% of federal employees.
They're also dissuaded by USAJobs, the federal online application system. “It’s very cumbersome,” says Vanderslice. “They get lost in it. If you do finish the application, it can take six to nine months for the hiring process to play out. Most find jobs in the meantime.”
But if they’re willing to persist, millennials could find that employment with the federal government is more desirable than they realize. Reasons include:
• Enormous potential to move up quickly. Thirty percent of federal employees are eligible to retire right now or within the next three to five years. They hold higher positions that will suddenly open up, giving an entry-level employee the chance to make $80,000 in three to five years.
• Exceptional benefits compared to other workers. In addition to health benefits and paid holidays, federal employees have the 401(k)-style Thrift Savings Plan and a pension, something few private companies offer anymore.
• Personal fulfillment. Millennials prefer jobs with a purpose beyond making money. Federal employment provides the opportunity to make a positive difference in people’s lives.
“Not only would millennials benefit from joining the federal government labor pool, the government would, too,” Vanderslice says. “Millennials bring youthful enthusiasm. They also tend to be technologically savvy. This is a potential match that would work well for both employee and employer.”