[IPAC-List] What does 2009 hold for public sector HR?

Dr. Dennis Doverspike dd1 at uakron.edu
Mon Jan 19 13:59:58 EST 2009


I believe that the IPMA has come out as concerned, I guess that is the best
word, with the new Ledbetter and Paycheck fairness acts. I can understand
why. It could open up a great deal of new litigation, which means a lot of
cost. You also have to wonder if there will be more of that type of
legislation, including a rewriting of the Civil Rights Act.

Overall, I would say, there will be pressure on cities and states to spend a
lot more money at a time where they have a lot less money to spend. This
could lead to a lot of dissatisfaction with government.

OK - I always say, we are really bad about predicting the future. I can
point to all the people who right now are saying what will happen in the
next year, who never foresaw the events that occurred in the last year.

Overall, it comes down to the fickle psychological phenomena of consumer
confidence. I guess it also depends on whether you believe people like or
want change. Or do they want constancy?

All I know is every time I buy stocks thinking it is time for the big
turnaround, I lose money. So don't ask me. I do better at the craps table.

Dennis Doverspike, Ph.D., ABPP
Professor of Psychology
Director, Center for Organizational Research Senior Fellow of the Institute
for Life-Span Development and Gerontology Licensed Psychologist, #3539
(OHIO) Psychology Department University of Akron Akron, Ohio 44325-4301

330-972-8372 (Office)

330-972-5174 (Office Fax)

ddoverspike at uakron.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: ipac-list-bounces at ipacweb.org [mailto:ipac-list-bounces at ipacweb.org]
On Behalf Of Mark Hammer
Sent: Monday, January 19, 2009 1:16 PM
To: IPAC-List at ipacweb.org
Subject: [IPAC-List] What does 2009 hold for public sector HR?

Some would say we're poised for sea change. Some would grumble and say
we're poised for simply more of the same. Some would look forward with
rejoicing to tomorrow and the subsequent months, where others say that we're
setting ourselves up for disappointment by expecting too much. (And
congrats on a new president, BTW)

One thing is clear, though. In response to events of the summer, and the
months preceding and following, governments everywhere are set to take bold
fiscal steps that can't help but have implications for what happens in the
public sector (I ran into our own finance minister in the hallways last week
and he looked like he had the weight of the world on his shoulders while he
is preparing a federal budget for next Monday). On the one hand, times of
duress sometimes provoke a bolstering of the public sector and frenzied
hiring to serve the underclass tries desperately treading water. On the
other hand, part of me says that we are about to see the public sector lose
its recruiting edge to the private sector as stimulus packages try to prop
up the economy. I have no indications yet that either of these is a
certainty or unlikely.

So, I'm not looking for the degree of certainty that would result in a wager
of this type: http://www.longbets.org/ I'm just curious about what some of
the members here think might be the implications in the public sector HR
world for the manner in which your federal and state governments, and our
federal and provincial governments here in Canada, are directing themselves
and their thinking to their response to the state of the federal economy.
Will all of this risky borrowing and deficit financing in the presence of a
new fiscal conservatism make the audit function the new poster child for
public service? Will we see growth in social programs and hiring in the
health, social welfare, and education sector? Will there be changes in the
expectations for how hiring is done? Does an emergency like the present one
push us towards faster hiring, with sacrifices in quality or parity? And I
feel silly saying it, but is the installation of Barack Obama as president
going to hav
e implications for what people expect in the way of minority hiring? Are
views of hiring immigrants (of ANY ethnicity) going to change as citizens
think about bailing out their own country and fellow citizens first? Do
folks see the government change as essentially good, but the implications
for HR as being of concern?

There's a lot in the offing here. I'm just wondering which way folks think
the wind is going to blow, and how hard, so I have a better sense of what
hat to wear and how tightly to secure it.

Mark Hammer

IPAC-List at ipacweb.org

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