As part of Convergence’s continued work with efforts around modernizing Congress, Convergence signed a joint letter with ten other organizations commending the Chief Administrative Officer of the House of Representatives Catherine Szpindor and her team for the new “Career Paths” initiative to help House staffers plan their careers and build the skills they need to succeed.
Here is the text of that letter:
Dear Chief Administrative Officer Szpindor:
We are writing to commend you and your team for the development and release of “Career Paths” features within the House of Representatives’ Human Resources Hub (HR Hub).
Our organizations are grateful for the outreach that resulted in a recent demo by the CAO team. We are impressed with the proactive steps the CAO is taking to improve information available for staff to use in career planning and accessing important resources.
As a bipartisan group of organizations working independently to support and encourage Congressional modernization, we understand the importance of recruiting, developing, supporting, and retaining qualified staff to DC and district offices. Congress’s effectiveness and capacity are a direct result of its investment in its workforce, and its ability to foster a culture of professionalism and collaboration. The new Career Paths feature not only helps with standardized definitions of key roles in Congressional offices, but also enables staffers to identify future opportunities if they decide to stay in Congressional service, helps them understand the skills required to advance, and, importantly, facilitates connections to CAO Coaching resources that provide training and resources to help staff develop those skills. This feature lets Congress tap into some of the best practices around human resources recognized by industry leaders in the private sector.
We also note that this new offering was initiated independently within the Office of the CAO to build on existing work completed in response to recommendations by the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress. The team identified needs and potential solutions for improving the staff experience and worked to develop and release an in-house solution—built with existing resources and released in a timely manner. This kind of proactive, ongoing system improvement often goes unacknowledged, but is essential to a “modern” Congress.
We encourage you to consider making non-sensitive portions of the site publicly viewable, since this information would be immensely helpful for students and professionals considering a career in Congress, especially candidates from backgrounds not already well-represented in the House labor force. Our organizations stand ready to help distribute and share this information if and when it is publicly available.
In addition, we look forward to future additions to the HR Hub, including the inclusion of resources for Congressional interns, features on exploring non-linear career paths, career paths including committee and leadership positions, and the incorporation of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion’s insights into barriers to Congressional service.
Again, we appreciate your team proactively reaching out to share information about these new features and we remain committed to supporting and amplifying these efforts in the future. Please do not hesitate to reach out if we can be a resource in this or any other endeavors.
Bipartisan Policy Center
Congressional Management Foundation
Convergence Center for Policy Resolution
Demand Progress Education Fund
Partnership for Public Service
Pay Our Interns
U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress (FMC)