OPM offers Y2K stress reduction tips


Managers beware: the grueling hours and tedious coding federal Y2K workers face everyday may be bugging them out.

Luckily, a new resource is available to help federal managers prevent stressed-out Y2K workers from spontaneously combusting.

The Office of Personnel Management's report, "Managing for Y2K in the Federal Workforce: The Human Element," offers managers the do's and don'ts of handling the federal Y2K workforce. The tips cover organizational structure, stress management, employee assistance programs, personnel flexibilities, and proactive management.

"The Y2K staff may be different from the employees that the manager is accustomed to supervising," the report warned. "They may feel like the child with a finger in the dyke."

To counteract such stress, OPM recommends that managers monitor sick leave and intervene before an entire workgroup gets Y2K burnout. "Don't encourage them to 'lighten up'," and "don't make extraneous demands on Y2K staff, no matter how minor they may seem to you," the report said.

The report recommended that managers make sure employee assistance services are readily available to Y2K staff through orientations and conveniently scheduled seminars. Managers should protect the privacy of staff who choose to use employee help services, the report said.

Several agencies were singled out for their efforts to reduce Y2K employee stress. The Department of Labor, for example, has separate office space for the Y2K team. Managers of the Y2K team make it a point to accept responsibility for flubbed projects.

The Interior Department takes a team approach to cultivating Y2K spirit and identity. "Y2K Team" caps, pens and mugs are distributed as informal awards to employees who support the effort.

OPM gave itself a pat on the back for creating new flexible work schedules for Y2K employees, among other stress-reducing efforts.

OPM is culling examples of best practices in federal Y2K workforce management. E-mail your agency's ideas to ehs@opm.gov and OPM will post them on its Web site.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.