IBM: Civil reforms work

Three states that have eliminated or dramatically curtailed their civil service systems have reaped many benefits, including quicker hires, improved satisfaction with personnel administration and better-qualified applicants, according to a new report from the IBM Endowment for the Business of Government.

The report details the effects of personnel reform in Florida, Georgia and Texas. Texas disbanded its Texas Merit Council in 1985 and returned control of most personnel management to state agencies.

Georgia passed a sweeping civil service reform bill in 1996. Every state employee hired since then serves at will. In 2001, Florida collapsed its state job classifications and eliminated civil service protection for managers and supervisors and seniority for all state employees.

The report, "Life After Civil Service Reform: The Texas, Georgia and Florida Experiences," is available at



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