The 5 Agencies Where Employee Satisfaction Is Growing the Most

Some federal employees are much happier in 2016.

For the second consecutive year, federal employees are slightly happier with their jobs than they were the year before.

In the 2016 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, the global satisfaction score -- which measures workers’ happiness with pay, their individual jobs and the overall organization -- rose to 61 percent from 60 percent in 2015. The modest increase was the second in as many years, following several in which employee morale and engagement had slipped significantly.

The results varied across government, with some agencies able to outperform the governmentwide number. Some agencies improved in 2016, but still ranked among the bottom overall, such as the Homeland Security Department.

Here are the five large agencies (those with more than 800 employees) that saw the biggest upticks in satisfaction since 2015:

1) Securities and Exchange Commission: 9 percentage point uptick

2) Energy Department: 5 point uptick

3) Environmental Protection Agency: 5 point uptick

4) Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation: 4 point uptick

5) National Archives and Records Administration: 4 point uptick

The SEC said it has invested in the development of its employees, boosted communication to employees at all levels, and launched a new forum to enable the agency to reach non-adversarial solutions with the National Treasury Employees Union.

“We are very pleased that the results reflect the sustained effort by our employees and leadership teams to work together to create an environment that fosters employee engagement and supports the SEC’s commitment to excellence in our work on behalf of America’s investors and our markets,” said Mary Jo White, the SEC’s chair. 

Here are the five small agencies (those with fewer than 800 employees) that saw the biggest increases in satisfaction since 2015:

1) African Development Foundation: 44 percentage point uptick

2) National Endowment of the Arts: 14 point uptick

3) Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission: 13 point uptick

4) Postal Regulatory Commission: 13 point uptick

5) Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board: 12 point uptick