House gives job swapping bill the green light

House gives job swapping bill the green light

Federal and industry systems employees are a step closer to being able to switch jobs.

The House by voice vote last week passed the Digital Tech Corps Act. The bill, HR 3925, would give midlevel government IT employees the opportunity to work with companies and share lessons learned with their agencies. Employees would be able to switch jobs for up to two years.

'The bill has a simple premise: Through partnership, the public and private sector can do a better job of tackling government's IT skills shortage than the government can do alone,' said Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.), the bill's sponsor. 'It will improve the skills of federal IT managers by exposing them to cutting-edge management trends in the private sector and help federal agencies recruit and retain talented IT managers by offering them a valuable career development tool.'

The bill included two amendments. One would require the Office of Personnel Management to submit to Congress a report on the adequacy of existing IT training programs; the other would require that 20 percent of the program's participants take positions in small businesses.

Davis said a number of companies, including Accenture LLP of Chicago, have agreed to participate in the program.

The bill will now be sent to the Senate, where Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) introduced a companion version in February.

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