NEW NUMBERS CONFIRM APPOINTEE EXODUS HAS STARTED, SLOWING PACE OF BUSINESS
The Department of Defense has 45 vacant senior level appointee positions heading into the last year of the current administration. The State Department has 51, according to numbers released last week on Govexec.com. Overall, approximately 25% of senior appointee positions are vacant throughout government. While this can sometimes mean good news for contractors if the exodus slows progress on unwanted programs, it usually ends up being a hindrance to getting new things done. Appointees bring energy and also the ability to initiate new projects and make sure things get done. In their absence, the pace of change in government usually slows. The vacancy rate will continue to climb through the year and Congress is unlikely to confirm any new appointees, except for those that are “must haves”. The result for contractors is that audiences for truly innovative approaches to IT problems will shrink. Innovation won’t end, but you will have to hunt deeper to find feds who will support it. “Retain existing” will continue to be a good segment to work in as well.