Doctor of Public Administration
Public Policy & Administration
Recent studies conducted by oversight agencies show that improvements are needed in Federal personnel office (FPO) operations. The existing literature and research in the field of public personnel administration provides little guidance as to what types of changes or interventions will improve service quality. The purpose of this study is to identify organizational variables that influence FPO service quality.
This study is based on the multiple-constituency model of organizational effectiveness and the body of literature pertaining to service quality research conducted in private sector service industries. The investigator developed a conceptual model of FPO service quality based on the findings from service quality research and from various Federal personnel studies. Using the conceptual model as a guide, the statement of the problem became: How do the organizational dimensions of FPO access, human resource management (HRM) program design, FPO staff qualifications, FPO staff attitudes, Federal manager status, and Federal manager support influence the quality of FPO service as perceived by Federal managers? Within these six dimensions, sixteen variables were identified for testing. The research design was based on determining the association of sixteen predictor variables to the criterion variable of perceived service quality, using analytical surveys randomly administered to 72 personnel specialists and 269 Federal managers in six Federal government organizations. Of the sixteen variables tested, six had a significant relationship to managers' perceptions of service quality. These were FPO proximity, HRM program responsiveness, FPO staff training, FPO service standards, and a managers' supervisory level and authority for HRM actions.
The primary significance of the study is that it extends service quality theory to Federal personnel administration, it provides an additional dimension to the current multiple constituency models of personnel office effectiveness, and it provides guidance on how to improve FPO service quality.
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