OMB Releases Memo on Reducing Federal Civilian Workforce

On April 12, 2017, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released a Memorandum to federal government agencies entitled, “Comprehensive Plan for Reforming the Federal Government and Reducing the Federal Civilian Workforce.”   The memo will replace the Federal “Hiring Freeze” Memorandum issued by President Trump on January 23, 2017. The memo directs federal agencies to make personnel cuts over the next year and provides guidance on fulfilling requirements of the Hiring Freeze Presidential Memorandum and the Executive Order (Reorganization EO) issued by the President on March 13, 2017.

The memo directs all agencies to:

  • Begin taking immediate actions to achieve near-term workforce reductions and cost savings, including planning for funding levels in the President's Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Budget Blueprint; 
  • Develop a plan to maximize employee performance by June 30, 2017; and 
  • Submit an Agency Reform Plan to OMB in September 2017 as part of the agency's FY 2019 Budget submission to OMB that includes long-term workforce reductions. An initial, high-level draft of the Agency Reform Plan is due to OMB by June 30, 2017. 

The memo also directs agencies to eliminate, restructure, or merge programs or activities that are needlessly redundant, non-essential to the agency’s mission or where other entities such as the private sector, another Federal program, or state or local governments are more appropriate to carry out the program or activity. Specific cuts will be made at the discretion of the agency. 

Federal Agency personnel are able to visit the MAX website for a timeline, more information on the Agency Reform Plan, and for more details and examples available to assist government agencies in implementing the workforce reduction plan.