Washington Headquarters Services
The Washington Headquarters Service (WHS) faced significant delays in onboarding new employees, impacting the Department of Defense's efforts to protect the American people. Mary Kay Byers, a retired intelligence community professional, was recruited to address this challenge and reduce the hiring duration.
Mary Kay conducted a thorough review of the hiring process, interviewing stakeholders and creating personas and journey maps to understand the customer experience. She identified a stovepipe hiring process with inefficient handoffs and a lack of oversight. A five-year data review highlighted the impact of external factors on efficiency and service delivery.
Empowered by WHS leadership, Mary Kay implemented a new pilot human resources program based on a shared service model. She defined staff roles, handoff points, and established frequent status communications. A dedicated group of internal staff monitored the recruiting flow and provided timely updates to hiring leaders and candidates.
Mary Kay's pilot program achieved remarkable results, reducing the average hiring and onboarding time to 35 days—an 81% reduction. The redesigned processes improved efficiency, stakeholder satisfaction, and performance measurement. These achievements enhance public safety and were accomplished during a challenging time for the human resources community.
Mary Kay's data-driven approach has also identified further best practices and areas for improvement, leading to a renewed contract for her services and the implementation of new solutions based on informed knowledge of HR processes and challenges. Her dedication and exemplary service have made a significant positive impact.
SERVICE TO THE CITIZEN AWARD WINNER
MARY C. BYERS, PhD.
Director, Human Capital Strategy, and Evaluation (Highly Qualified Expert), Human Resources Directorate, Washington Headquarters Service
U.S. Department of Defense