In accordance with Section 1128 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004, the U.S. Department of Labor posts annual employee surveys describing employee engagement and global satisfaction as well as leadership and management practices. The Annual Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (FEVS) administered by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), measures employees' perceptions of the work environment. The results of the FEVS are reviewed and analyzed to determine patterns and themes to identify DOL's strengths and challenges; and the results are used to guide employee engagement efforts.

The FEVS captured data on Employee Engagement, Global Satisfaction, and the New Inclusion Quotient (New IQ); as well as four additional themes: Leadership & Knowledge Management, Results-Oriented Performance Culture, Talent Management, and Job Satisfaction.

DOL focuses on the following FEVS indices: Employee Engagement, Global Satisfaction, and the New Inclusion Quotient (New IQ). In addition, DOL tracks three additional focus areas related to: Leadership, Training, and Innovation.

Survey Administration, Sample Size, Response Rate

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) administered the FEVS between May 4, 2017, and June 15, 2017, to all eligible (N = 14,779) full-time and part-time, permanent, non-seasonal Department of Labor (DOL) employees onboard as of October 31, 2016. A total of 8,837 surveys were completed, yielding a response rate of 59.8 percent, which was lower than the previous year's rate of 74.6 percent, but outpacing the government-wide response rate for the last four years.

Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey Year






DOL Response Rate






Government Response Rate







Survey respondent demographics included:

  • Location: 37.0 percent located in DOL headquarters; 62.9 percent located in DOL Field Offices
  • Gender: 47.6 percent women; 52.4 percent men
  • Race: 71.6 percent White; 17.9 percent African American; 5.3 percent Asian; .9 percent American Indian/Alaska Native; 0.4 percent Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander; 3.9 percent two or more races
  • Persons with Disabilities: 17.4 percent
  • Supervisory Level: 69.2 percent non-supervisor; 8.2 percent team leader; 14.1 percent supervisor; 6.8 percent manager; 1.7 percent executive
  • Pay Grade: 0.1 percent Federal Wage System; under the General Schedule - 3.3 percent Entry Level (GS 1-6), 51.6 percent Mid-Level (GS 7-12), and 42.9 percent Senior Level (GS 13-15); 0.1 percent Senior Level (SL); and 1.4 percent Senior Executive Service; .6 percent Other
  • Federal Tenure: 11.9 percent 3 or less years; 32.6 percent 4-10 years; 27.1 percent 11-20 years; 28.4 percent more than 20 years
  • Age: 4.4 percent 29 and younger; 21.4 percent 30-39; 24.4 percent 40-49; 32.6 percent 50-59; 17.2 percent 60 and older

2017 DOL FEVS Results

Overall results — DOL's 2017 FEVS results were more positive than its 2016 results. DOL's percent positive scores were higher than the government-wide average on 66 of total survey items.

Forty-one survey items were identified as "Strengths," with positive responses of 65 percent or higher.

Two survey items were identified as "Challenges," with negative responses of 35 percent or higher.

FY 2017 Strengths: DOL's top five positive responses were:

  • item 7: When needed, I am willing to put in the extra effort to get a job done (96 percent);
  • item 13: The work I do is important (92 percent);
  • item 8: I am constantly looking for ways to do my job better (90 percent);
  • item 16: I am held accountable for achieving results  (88 percent); and
  • item 50: In the last six months, my supervisor has talked with me about my performance (88 percent).

2017 Challenges: DOL's two negative responses were:

  • item 33: Pay raises depend on how well employees perform their jobs. (40 percent);
  • item 9: I have sufficient resources (for example, people, materials, budget) to get my job done. (37 percent)

Comparison with FY 2016 Results — DOL's 2017 results show that 56 items increased since 2016. Of those, 26 items increased two percentage points or more. DOL achieved the highest percentage point increase on:

  • item 84: How satisfied are you with the following Work/Life programs in your agency? Elder Care Programs (+4.4);
  • item 55: Supervisors work well with employees of different backgrounds. (+4.0);
  • item 44: Discussions with my supervisor about my performance were worthwhile. (+3.2)

DOL's 2017 results showed a two percentage point improvement from 2016 in Global Satisfaction and New IQ. In addition, the results showed a one percentage point improvement from 2016 in overall Employee Engagement and its sub-components (Leaders Lead, Supervisors, and Intrinsic Work Experience); and Training. There was no change from 2016 in Leadership and Innovation.

The increase in positive results mirrors the dedication and teamwork of DOL employees to address DOL's mission to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

The Department still seeks higher positive responses from its workforce and continues to implement strategies toward improving communication, training, leadership and innovation within each DOL agency. DOL will work diligently and collaboratively to continue identifying opportunities for improvement, address employment barriers and workforce concerns, and foster an environment of excellence that supports all of our workers and allows each to contribute to their and our Department's fullest potential. DOL will continue to use survey results to support the development and implementation of ongoing improvement strategies.