Performance-Based Actions & Poor Performance Ratings
Federal Employment Attorneys
If you're a federal employee facing scrutiny for your performance, it's crucial that you take the allegation seriously and proactively prepare for your response, and to participate in a performance improvement period (PIP). A proposed demotion or removal for unacceptable performance can have a devastating effect on your career and potentially harm your employability. At The Law Firm of John P. Mahoney, Esq., Attorneys at Law, PLLC, we understand the need for strategic and creative planning to protect our clients' interests.
A performance action can often result in:
- A Performance Improvement Plan (PIP)
- Undesirable transfer
If you have recently received a poor performance rating, talk to an attorney who cares about your case. Contact The Law Firm of John P. Mahoney, Esq., Attorneys at Law, PLLC, and let's discuss how to move forward with your issue. Attorney Mahoney has published a book chapter on responding to performance cases. As a result, we can review whether you have been unfairly targeted and identify ways to respond to a PIP to avoid adverse action.
What Happens If I Get a Poor Federal Performance Rating?
In recent years, a wide range of new policies were passed with the intent of making it easier to penalize poor performers in federal workplaces.
In October of 2020, The Office of Personnel Management issued new regulations establishing how managers should handle employees with poor performance ratings. The guidelines, which went into effect in November, enacted the following procedures:
- Employees with poor performance ratings will receive a notice from their supervisor concerning their performance, as well as metrics they should attempt to pass to improve their performance. However, compared to previous federal employee policies, employees now have shorter deadlines to improve their performance, and require fewer formal notices of their performance rating.
- Agencies now have no obligation to employees to help them improve poor performance;
- Employees who are accused of poor performance now have less time to respond to those allegations;
- Agencies are now responsible for reminding supervisors when workers who are under probation for poor performance are about to see their probation periods expire;
- Agencies are now restricted from removing or changing information in an employee's personnel record if an employee with a poor performance rating achieves some sort of settlement agreement with the agency before leaving their position;
- There are now mandatory procedures agencies can take to respond against supervisors who retaliate against whistleblowers.
Generally, employees who receive a poor performance rating will receive a formal notice from their supervisor informing them of how they failed to meet the expectations of their position, and what sort of achievements the employee must make to rectify those errors.
In certain situations, the employee may be placed under probation while they attempt to improve their performance.
Employees are usually given a certain timeframe for improving their performance. If they fail to successfully improve their performance even after multiple formal notices and chances to do so, they may be removed from their position.
How Can I Challenge Allegations of Poor Performance?
Our lawyers are based in Washington, D.C., and bring decades of experience defending federal employees against performance actions and other allegations that can jeopardize their careers. We have been effective at negotiating with federal agencies and getting these proposals reduced or reversed altogether. We do everything we can to advocate for our clients and protect their interests.