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U.S. Office of Personnel Management - Ensuring the Federal Government has an effective civilian workforce

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Human Resources Line of Business (HR LOB)

Historically, the U.S. Federal Government has taken an agency–centric approach to delivering human resources services to government employees.  Agencies have their own human resources (HR) missions, HR staffs, HR management practices and technology.  While it makes sense for agencies to maintain control of some HR practices, it also makes sense that other HR practices – those that are transactional in nature and not clearly linked to agency missions – be taken out of the agency domain.  This frees up agency resources to do the more valuable, strategic work of HR.

The Human Resources Line of Business (HR LOB) initiative has been launched to think through this fundamental business issue.  This initiative has been tasked to consider business benefits and impacts and propose a service delivery model that preserves some HR functions at the agency level – where it makes sense – and that moves other HR functions to federal HR service centers.  Over time, as the federal HR service centers evolve and expand their capabilities, more and more functions will shift to the service center delivery mode.

The HR Line of Business initiative supports all three principles that guide the President’s Management Agenda.

1) It is citizen-centered.  The service centers will free up agency HR personnel to do the more valuable, strategic work of building a federal workforce that includes more employees in customer service delivery roles and cultivating a citizen-centric culture. 

2) It is results-oriented.  The initiative will identify outcomes and establish performance measures and an ongoing tracking process to ensure desired results are achieved.  Where they are not achieved, corrective actions will be taken. 

3) It is market-based.  The shared service center approach is designed to encourage competition among federal and private sector providers and maximize private sector involvement; this competition in turn should result in improved quality, efficiency and customer satisfaction.