The top federal procurement officer on Mar. 21, 2013 called for “not a tweak but a full rethink” of the government’s planning for its acquisition workforce, warning that as many as 40 percent of the 36,000 federal contracting officers could retire in the next five years.
Joe Jordan, administrator of the White House Office of Federal Procurement Policy, compared the coming brain drain to water flowing out of a “giant bathtub,” saying he plans to push agencies to “widen the aperture of who they recruit.”
Hiring managers should sell their agencies “as a good place to work for anyone who is smart and wants to serve” and then train them at facilities such as the Federal Acquisition Institute, Jordan told an audience of vendors and agency staff at the “Acquisition Excellence” conference hosted jointly by the American Council for Technology-Industry Advisory Council and the General Services Administration. “Retaining these people in an era of continuing resolutions and pay freezes is a real challenge.”
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