A new survey of federal government workers found that job satisfaction and commitment levels to be at the lowest points in a decade.
According to the annual "Best Places to Work in the Federal Government," the government-wide job satisfaction score fell from 64% in 2011 to 60.8% in 2012. The 3.2-point drop "is the largest change in the history of the rankings."
The survey found that 77.3% of government employees say they value their agencies’ missions, but number fell from 2011 as well.
The Department of Homeland Security "was the lowest-ranked large agency" -- only 52.9% of employees there were satisfied with their jobs. The Department of Veterans Affairs followed, ranking 18th out of 19 large agencies.
Max Collier, the assistant director of a VA community liaison program, told the Washington Post the agency had "a lot of issues and problems."
Max Stier, president of the partnership that conducts the survey, told the Washington Post that these numbers reflected a "failure of management,”at many government agencies.
Of the large agencies, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Justice experienced the biggest decreases in satisfaction. Among mid-size agencies, the National Labor Relations Board experienced the biggest decrease in employee satisfaction from last year. And of small agencies, the Federal Maritime Commission and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative had the largest declines in employee satisfaction.
There are some agencies where morale is high. NASA ranked as the best place to work in the government, followed by the intelligence community, the State Department, the Commerce Department, and the Environmental Protection Agency.