HR trends & takeaways from NASPE 2023

July 27th, 2023
The HireVue Team

HireVue had the privilege of attending the annual conference for the National Association of State Personnel Executives (NASPE), an HR event specifically tailored for professionals in state level spaces.

The conference brings together HR experts from various states to discuss crucial topics in the public sector, offering a diverse range of sessions including job satisfaction, HR maturity, skills-based hiring, and attracting Generation Z to government-based work. 

Below are 4 key takeaways from this year’s event in hopes of shedding light on the challenges and opportunities faced by public sector HR professionals.

Foster Job Satisfaction

This year, discussions centered around a vital theme—job satisfaction. Attendees were encouraged to consider three essential elements for achieving job satisfaction in their current roles within the federal and government space. The elements included:

  1. Opportunities to help people: Meaningful work that positively impacts citizens and society is a fundamental aspect of job satisfaction. HR professionals were urged to seek roles that allowed them to contribute to the well-being of the public in some way.
  2. Expressing skills and superpowers: Job satisfaction is amplified when employees have the chance to leverage their unique skill sets and talents in service to the nation. Finding roles that align with their strengths can lead to a more fulfilling career.
  3. Ease and compatibility: The third key element emphasized finding roles that come relatively easy to individuals within the context of the federal and government space. When employees find their work enjoyable and compatible with their capabilities, they are more likely to experience job satisfaction—so lean into technology to start building an empowered workforce.

And when it comes to recruiting Gen Z candidates, the same ideas apply. This younger generation is looking for opportunities that align with their values. According to Intel, diversity “will be a workplace deal-breaker for Gen Z.” Over a third of Gen-Zers say if given two similar offers, they would undoubtedly choose the company they perceived as more diverse and inclusive. Gen Z candidates are seeking companies that align with their values, and they’re 204% more likely to engage with that employer when candidates perceive the hiring process as fair.

Using technology that helps create fairer workplaces is imperative in today’s landscape—it’s not only the right thing to do but helps you attract the right candidates. HireVue launched Builder for Live which combines the structured interview generator with HireVue’s live interview platform, bringing consistency and fairness to every version of virtual interviews. By implementing the technology, hiring teams are given access to well-designed, pre-written, and science-backed interview questions that evaluate for job-relevant skills and assess for competencies (not resumes)—which helps ensure all your candidates are evaluated consistently.

Optimize your HR tech.

The HR Maturity Index, presented by Qualtrics, offered an invaluable tool to HR groups within the federal and government sectors. The index served as a framework to assess and articulate the current level of optimization for HR processes. With the ability to gauge optimization, government entities can identify areas for improvement, potentially streamlining their HR practices and enhancing efficiency to better serve the public. 

HireVue believes there are 3 key steps to optimizing your HR tech stack. When auditing your processes, ensure your solution can:

  1. Automate your pain points
  2. Integrate with your ATS
  3. Engage more candidates in less time

Want to learn more? Check out our Optimization Guide.

Embrace skills and competency-based hiring.

An increasing number of entities in the federal and government space are embracing skills-based hiring by removing degree requirements from over 50% of traditional job descriptions. This approach aims to widen the applicant pool and diversify talent in service of the nation. The relevance of competency-based assessments, such as video job tests (VJTs), was also discussed, particularly for low-tech maturity groups seeking efficient hiring solutions.

HireVue believes in skill-based assessments, and we now offer an assessment for every role at every level, including early talent. Our suite of solutions, including the Virtual Job Tryout®, helps take the guesswork out of good hiring, providing a Realistic Job Preview for candidates in the hiring process. And for those early career candidates, a lot of their jobs don’t require skills, so hiring technology measures factors like aptitude—instead of the skills that will be more crucial later in their careers. 

Back your decisions with data and ensure all your candidates are evaluated the same—making your hiring fairer for everyone. 

Attract Gen Z to government-based work.

Public sector hiring teams face the double-edged sword of hiring—not only are they competing for top talent but they’re competing against the private sector as well. This year’s final session revolved around attracting Gen Z to government roles and 3 strategies to incorporate into your race for talent.

  1. Educate Gen Z on government-based work: Create awareness about the significance of public sector roles and their positive impact on citizens and the nation.
  2. Highlight the singular perks: Showcase the unique benefits of government work, including pension plans, comprehensive health coverage, and potential career growth within the federal and government space. Many young candidates aren’t aware of the costs of retirement or healthcare when they first enter their careers, so take the steps to help educate them on the advantages of government benefits.
  3. Invest in career development: Offer robust pre-boarding, onboarding, and continued professional development as a way to entice Gen Z talent towards a rewarding and impactful career in service.

This year’s conference provided a wealth of insights and perspectives on crucial topics in public sector HR. From enhancing job satisfaction to navigating complex HR processes, the event underscored the importance of continuous improvement and innovation within the federal and government sectors. As HR professionals embrace these learnings and implement progressive strategies, they move one step closer to creating a thriving and engaging work environment while effectively serving the diverse needs of the nation and its citizens.

HireVue is FedRAMP certified and used by 8 of the 10 largest federal agencies. Request a demo to take your hiring to the next level.