My Coast Guard
Commentary | June 6, 2022

Time to tell it like it is 

By Kathy Murray, MyCG Writer

The pandemic led to more flexibility in the workplace, and guess what? Employees at the Coast Guard decided they liked telework.  

At least that’s the message sent by those who took the Federal Employment Viewpoint Survey (FEVS) last year, with the number of respondents saying they needed to be physically present to do their jobs was down 10 points to 17%, from 26% in 2018.  

And just in case you’re wondering, the message was received. 

“Coast Guard leadership hears you loud and clear,” said Michael GrayWolff, in the Office of Workforce Relations in Civilian Human Resources. “We are in the process of updating telework policies so the Coast Guard can remain the employer of choice by retaining our high performing workforce, attracting new talent, and allowing flexibility while ensuring our mission is accomplished.” 

This despite the fact, GrayWolff notes, that one of the consistent challenges with FEVs is that employees don’t believe anything will be done with the results.  

That isn’t the case, of course. Diversity initiatives, new training opportunities, and a cyber career ladder and recruitment/retention efforts are among the responses to previous FEVS. In addition, he adds, there is now a new civilian position within the Coast Guard that will take a closer analytical look at the FEVS results and trends, and work on plans to address issues raised in the survey. 

Plus, this year’s survey is going to have an expanded list of questions on pandemic work life, telework, and other issues that affect the workforce today. 

When is this happening and how can I take part? 

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) will release the 2022 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (FEVS) is scheduled to be released early in June to all eligible Department of Homeland Security (DHS) employees. 

All permanent, non-permanent, full-time, or part-time civilian employees who were employed with the Coast Guard as of November 2021 are eligible. If you qualify and have a valid email address, you will receive an email from EVHS@opm.gov. The subject line will read "2022 OPM Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey." You will also be sent reminders to complete the survey by July 22.  

You can also learn more about the 2021 results as well as the upcoming survey at the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey Connect website

Why should I offer my input? 

Your feedback is used to identify and address areas where the Coast Guard has challenges or can improve. The FEVS data is also used for OMB/OPM/DHS initiatives, DHS and government-wide benchmarking, and Best Places to Work rankings.  

Will my responses be traced to me? 

No. The survey is confidential. No individual responses will be provided to DHS or the Coast Guard, and the data received is aggregated to ensure anonymity. Plus, employees are encouraged to use work time to respond to the survey. The survey takes approximately 20-30 minutes to complete. It is mobile enabled, with easy access from government-issued cell phones. Each survey link is personalized and should not be shared. However, employees may forward their own link to their personal e-mail to complete the survey from their personal computer, tablet, or phone. 

Can I access the FEVS results and reports? 

Annual FEVS Coast Guard reports are available here. Units interested in obtaining more data can contact our FEVS team at:  FEVS@uscg.mil.  Watch for a message with 2022 FEVS results in early 2023.   

Government-wide FEVS data can be accessed on OPM's website

What if I need help? 

For technical issues, please contact the OPM FEVS Help Desk by replying to the email invitation you received. 

If you have any additional questions, please contact our FEVS team at: FEVS@uscg.mil