From the Ottawa Citizen. (H/T Andrew)
Recent post-secondary graduates recruited by the federal public service appear to become more disengaged and less ambitious the longer they’re in their jobs.
That’s a key conclusion of a new study that provides an intriguing window into perceptions of government employment by new public service hires and potential recruits. The study, recently posted to a government website, was done for the Public Service Commission by EKOS Research Associates.
It involved online surveys with two groups of people hired through the government’s Post-Secondary Recruitment Program (PSR), as well as recent hires recruited through other methods and “potential recruits” — mostly university graduates under age 35.
As part of the study, EKOS re-interviewed 219 PSR recruits who were surveyed in an earlier phase of the study in 2009. It found some “troubling shifts” in their attitudes.
The importance these recruits attach to “key intrinsic job aspects” has declined over the past year, the study reports. The weight they give to the opportunity to be creative declined by nine percentage points from 2009 to 2010, it says, while the importance they attached to the prestige associated with their jobs fell by 10 points.
There were also smaller declines in the importance ascribed to meaningful work and opportunities for career advancement, while “more extrinsic issues” — such as attractive compensation and a good work-life balance — assumed greater significance.
“These findings suggest that PSR recruits become less ambitious/intrinsically motivated as they spend more time in the federal public service,” the study concludes.
Can people who are disengaged serve the public as well as private sector workers whose compensation and continued employment depends on their being engaged in their work? This is why we need to privatize as much as possible.