The Office of Personnel Management is outlining its data goals for fiscal years (FY) 2023-2026 in its first-ever Data Strategy to bolster the Federal workforce’s data analytics skills.

In the new strategy, OPM said it aims to lay a strong foundation of people, data, technology, and governance for long-term success.

“OPM staff has already begun this work and I am excited about the prospect of working with our workforce and partners to leverage data to drive the implementation of workforce flexibilities, expand the Federal talent pool and bring about positive change for the Federal workforce,” OPM Director Kiran Ahuja said in the strategy.

As part of the President’s Management Agenda (PMA), OPM is aiming to drive a data-driven and best practices approach to recruitment, assessment, and hiring strategies that strengthen and supports diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) across the Federal Government.

To achieve this goal and redefine the future of the Federal workplace, Ahuja said this will depend largely on the ability of Federal human capital professionals to gather meaningful insights from OPM’s human capital data.

“As such, OPM will need to take substantive steps, consistent with Federal law, to 1) increase data competencies and mobilize human capital professionals not only at OPM but across the Federal government, to collaborate and exchange ideas, techniques, and products to drive effective workforce policies, programs, and services, and 2) strategically leverage its human capital data assets, increasing their usability while also protecting personnel and other sensitive data,” Ahuja said.

The new data strategy, developed in collaboration with Federal agency partners, outlines four key goals:

  • Goal 1: Develop a strong, data-driven culture and a highly skilled data and analytics workforce across the Federal government;
  • Goal 2: Deliver high-quality human capital data products that inform and support critical decision-making for OPM, Federal agencies, employees, and the public;
  • Goal 3: Leverage technology and standards to improve data collection, enable data integration, and advanced analytics; and
  • Goal 4: Develop and implement strong data governance to include privacy, security, and management.

Notably, the strategy outlines the agency’s plans to modernize its aging data platforms and develop a scalable, cloud-based analytics platform “that provides advanced levels of automation and appropriately integrates government-wide human capital, industry, and contextual data.”

“The unified platform will address the need for repetitive data collection and management across agencies,” the strategy says. “Additionally, it will facilitate consistent access, security, enhanced privacy, and governance across all data assets.”

Additionally, the strategy outlines plans for OPM to develop a data portal where agencies, employees, and the public can utilize human capital data products and services – enabling a seamless customer experience for data access.

OPM also plans to implement a common set of data analytics and data science tools to optimize collaborative learning and analysis of human capital data across the workforce.

“OPM has begun laying the foundation for successful implementation of its data strategy,” the strategy says. “Components of its enterprise-level data and analytics platform are being built and new data products are being piloted to test capabilities and prove concepts. Internal and cross-agency data communities are forming and eager to advance data learning and idea sharing.”

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Grace Dille
Grace Dille
Grace Dille is MeriTalk's Assistant Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.