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Questions About the Hiring Freeze? OPM Has the Answers

To help clear up confusion around the federal hiring freeze, the Office of Personnel Management released a guidance to address the specific recruitment activities agencies may participate in during the freeze.

The guidance consists of 43 frequently-asked-questions about the hiring freeze and states that agencies may continue to post job announcements, participate in recruitment fairs, conduct interviews or review applications for positions that are under the hiring freeze, but they are not allowed to make any job offers.

“Agencies should consider the timing of posting new jobs openings for positions that are subject to the freeze in order to help manage applicant expectations,” the guidance stated.

The document also provided guidance specific to the Senior Executive Service. Agencies are permitted to submit qualifications packages for SES candidates, and OPM will continue to process Qualifications Review Board (QRB) certification packages or QRB moratorium exemption requests if agency chief human capital officers tell OPM that it made an SES offer before noon on Jan. 22, 2017, reports Federal News Radio.

As for promotions, agencies are not allowed to make competitive promotions during the hiring freeze unless the position was exempted from the freeze, and they cannot fill vacancies by promoting candidates from either inside or outside the agency’s workforce.

Agencies can, however, reappoint, reassign or promote an employee if the organization must take some kind of personnel action to comply with a decision from the Merit Systems Protection Board, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or other third party adjudicative agency, the memo said.

Posted in General News

Tags: OPM, hiring freeze

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