Congress and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) have reported that more needs to be done to ensure that Federal government’s veterinary workforce has the intellectual and physical capacity to meet the ever changing and evolving needs of our country; such as preventing animal diseases, protecting our nation’s food supply, preparing for and addressing catastrophic events, and responding to zoonotic disease outbreaks. At the same time, the Federal government is at a pivotal point with how it manages human capital (its employees) because fiscal resources have diminished in years past. Agencies are required to review how they manage their human resources because of the tight fiscal environment that we are confronted with, so this means that agencies must identify effective and efficient means for managing its people.
On June 27, 2012, a first of its kind Veterinary Workforce Assessment (VWA) is being deployed by the federal veterinary workforce’s Talent Management Advisory Council (TMAC). The TMAC is an interagency group (consisting of federal Veterinarians, Human Resource Specialists, Workforce Planners, Human Capital Officers, and other experts) that is developing a strategic interagency workforce plan to obtain a government wide understanding of the current status and future needs of the federal veterinary workforce. This VWA will be used to collect previously unavailable information about the federal veterinary workforce and focus on the importance of federal veterinarians by better defining the many roles they fill in protecting both animal and human health.
If you are a federal veterinary employee, information about how to access this workforce assessment tool can be found at federalworkforce.org. Your feedback will be used to:
A) Provide critical information, such as, first responder capabilities and capacity and identify Federal Veterinarian capacity for sustaining continuity of operations.
B) Inform agencies about where training is needed for veterinarians.
C) Succession planning: ensure the needs of our nation’s animals and public health, for which the federal veterinary workforce is responsible, can be met now and in the future. To include: retaining our current workforce while recruiting for current and future positions.
It is important to note that such an interagency effort has never been attempted by a federal health professions workforce. The federal veterinary community is taking the lead to help shape its future while improving public& animal health.
The assessment will close on at the end of July.