(e) When taking disciplinary action, agencies should have discretion to take into account an employee’s disciplinary record and past work record, including all past misconduct -- not only similar past misconduct. Agencies should provide an employee with appropriate notice when taking a disciplinary action.
(f) To the extent practicable, agencies should issue decisions on proposed removals taken under chapter 75 of title 5, United States Code, within 15 business days of the end of the employee reply period following a notice of proposed removal.
(g) To the extent practicable, agencies should limit the written notice of adverse action to the 30 days prescribed in section 7513(b)(1) of title 5, United States Code.
(h) The removal procedures set forth in chapter 75 of title 5, United States Code (Chapter 75 procedures), should be used in appropriate cases to address instances of unacceptable performance.
(i) A probationary period should be used as the final step in the hiring process of a new employee. Supervisors should use that period to assess how well an employee can perform the duties of a job. A probationary period can be a highly effective tool to evaluate a candidate’s potential to be an asset to an agency before the candidate’s appointment becomes final.
(j) Following issuance of regulations under section 7 of this order, agencies should prioritize performance over length of service when determining which employees will be retained following a reduction in force.
Sec. 3. Standard for Negotiating Grievance Procedures. Whenever reasonable in view of the particular circumstances, agency heads shall endeavor to exclude from the application of any grievance procedures negotiated under section 7121 of title 5, United States Code, any dispute concerning decisions to remove any employee from Federal service for misconduct or unacceptable performance. Each agency shall commit the time and resources necessary to achieve this goal and to fulfill its obligation to bargain in good faith. If an agreement cannot be reached, the agency shall, to the extent permitted by law, promptly request the assistance of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and, as necessary, the Federal Service Impasses Panel in the resolution of the disagreement. Within 30 days after the adoption of any collective bargaining agreement that fails to achieve this goal, the agency head shall provide an explanation to the President, through the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM Director).
Sec. 4. Managing the Federal Workforce. To promote good morale in the Federal workforce, employee accountability, and high performance, and to ensure the effective and efficient accomplishment of agency missions and the efficiency of the Federal service, to the extent consistent with law, no agency shall:
(a) subject to grievance procedures or binding arbitration disputes concerning:
- the assignment of ratings of record; or
- the award of any form of incentive pay, including cash awards; quality step increases; or recruitment, retention, or relocation payments;
(b) make any agreement, including a collective bargaining agreement:
- that limits the agency’s discretion to employ Chapter 75 procedures to address unacceptable performance of an employee;
- that requires the use of procedures under chapter 43 of title 5, United States Code (including any performance assistance period or similar informal period to demonstrate improved performance prior to the initiation of an opportunity period under section 4302(c)(6) of title 5, United States Code), before removing an employee for unacceptable performance; or
- that limits the agency’s discretion to remove an employee from Federal service without first engaging in progressive discipline; or