Category Findings

As part of the Best Places to Work analysis, the Partnership and BCG measure views on 10 aspects of the employee experience and provide a government-wide score and individual agency scores for those specific issues. The 10 workplace categories are effective leadership, employee skills-mission match, satisfaction with pay, strategic management, teamwork, innovation, training and development, work-life balance, leadership’s support for diversity and how employees are recognized for performance.

The 2019 data shows small increases in eight out of the 10 workplace categories. The largest increases are in training and development, and performance-based rewards and advancement. Support for diversity and pay were the two areas where employee satisfaction slightly declined, with scores falling by 0.2 and 0.4 points respectively. As it has been since the start of the rankings, employee skills-mission match is government’s highest scoring category in 2019.

Leaders have a big impact on employee engagement

Many issues influence employee engagement, but effective leadership continues to be the key driver for federal employees as it has been every year since the Best Places to Work rankings were first launched in 2003. This category encompasses employee views on supervisors, fairness, empowerment and senior leaders.

While the government’s effective leadership score increased by 0.3 points to 56.7 out of 100 in 2019, it remains the second-lowest category score after performance-based rewards and advancement.

Two other key factors that influence engagement are how well employees believe their skills are matched to their agency mission and pay. On employee skills-mission match, the government-wide score increased by 0.2 points to 77.5. On satisfaction with pay, the government-wide score fell by 0.4 points to 59.5, the largest category score decrease in 2019.