Federal employees have greater job satisfaction for the first time in four years, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration remained the top Federal agency to work at, according to the Partnership for Public Service’s 2015 Best Places to Work in the Federal Government.

The Partnership released the study Tuesday.
The study, the Partnership’s 10th annual report on Federal agencies, revealed a slight increase in Federal employee satisfaction and commitment with their jobs and workplaces. The 2015 score of 58.1 out of 100 represents a 1.2-point increase from 2014 and follows four years of declining employee satisfaction, according to the Partnership.

The primary factor influencing Federal employee satisfaction and commitment is effective leadership. In 2015, the score for senior leaders remains low but it improved 1.4 points to 43.8 after dropping three points in 2014, the Partnership said.

The Partnership identified the top Federal agencies in its Best Places to Work report.

Top five large Federal agencies:

1. National Aeronautics and Space Administration

2. Intelligence Community

3. Department of Justice (tie)

3. Department of State (tie)

5. Department of Commerce

Top five midsize Federal agencies:

1. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

2. Peace Corps

3. Government Accountability Office

4. Federal Trade Commission

5. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

Top five small Federal agencies:

1. Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service

2. Overseas Private Investment Corporation

3. Federal Labor Relations Authority

4. National Endowment for the Humanities

5. Surface Transportation Board

Top five agency subcomponents:

1. Office of the Inspector General (Tennessee Valley Authority)

2. Office of the General Counsel (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission)

3. U.S. Army Audit Agency (Army)

4. Environment and Natural Resources Division (Justice)

5. Office of Budget, Finance, and Award Management (National Science Foundation)

The most improved large agency for the second year in a row is the Department of Labor. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is the most improved midsize agency. HUD, however, still ranks 21 out of 24 midsize agencies. The Federal Maritime Commission is the most improved small agency.

More than 70 percent of Federal organizations saw their employee satisfaction and commitment scores increase in 2015, according to the Partnership, compared to only 43.1 percent in 2014 and 24 percent in 2013.

While the government-wide Best Places to Work score increased to 58.1, it is still well below the private sector, the Partnership said. According to Sirota, a survey research organization, the 2015 satisfaction rate for private sector employees is 76.7.

The Best Places to Work rankings include 391 Federal agencies and their subcomponents, which represent 97 percent of the Federal executive branch workforce.

Organizations are rated within one of four groupings: large agency (15,000 or more employees), midsize agency (1,000-14,999 employees), small agency (100-999 employees) and agency subcomponent (subagency, bureau, division, center or office).

The Partnership for Public Service produced the report with consulting firm Deloitte.

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