Deciding on the right situation for paid administrative leave within government

Managing paid administrative lead could help government organizations address important issues.

Managing paid administrative lead could help government organizations address important issues.

Without proper attention and modernization, inefficient payroll systems could lead to many problems. Organizations need to understand and use them effectively to not just coordinate pay among a diverse workforce, but react to specific problem situations. FCW recently reported on the issue of putting government workers under investigation on paid leave, something that writer Steve Kelman says is part of a "broken" HR system.

In this example, Kelman refers to the legal difficulties in solving these issues that have resulted in this "dysfunctional" practice. As a possible alternative, he says that employees should be suspended without pay when they have been found guilty of wrongdoing. The HR system used has to be ready to adapt to such situations for the most beneficial outcome.

This blog has mentioned multiple examples of paid leave and the different approaches organizations can take to this method. Both Kelman and an article in the Washington Post mention a memo from Katherine Archuleta, the director of the Office of Personnel Management who criticized the habit of using administrative leave when it isn't the best solution.

As she puts it, leave shouldn't be seen as the only response to bad employee behavior for disciplinary purposes.

"While administrative leave may be appropriate under various circumstances, supervisors often place employees on administrative leave rather than utilizing other options that may be more appropriate," she said. "Administrative leave is not an entitlement, and agencies are not required to grant it."

When your organization does decide to grant leave, it should be able to coordinate policies based on what works for each employee and what the situation requires. If your business is unsure how to proceed, you can find an HR consulting business for relevant information that will help you restructure effectively.