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Case Study

Assessing impact of a major reorganization in a federal agency


Photo: Agency leaders gain significant insight into challenges and opportunities of new organizational structure.
Agency leaders gain significant insight into challenges and opportunities of new organizational structure.

Right before Covid and the resulting shutdown, an Executive Branch federal agency’s Office of Human Capital went through a major reorganization that reduced its size by half – from about 65 to 32 employees. Key functions of the organization were outsourced under a shared service provider model for human resources systems and services. The provider handled the agency’s systems and support for operational functions – personnel, recruitment, time and attendance, staffing and recruitment, employee benefits, workers compensation, and payroll services. Work related to planning, policy, analysis, and organization development consulting was retained by the agency.

While the outsourcing has the potential for many positive outcomes, the change was characterized to staff as the result of a deficiency within the office. The loss of many coworkers and vital functions impacted staff, and leaders were trying to rebuild esprit de corps among remaining staff members and refocus those staff members whose duties were outsourced on performing in a consulting capacity versus an operational one.


Profile Partners performed an organizational assessment to provide more insight for leadership on the organization’s strengths, gaps, and its readiness to build consulting competencies. Additionally, the assessment would provide data to inform the upcoming strategic planning process and help leadership prioritize initiatives and interventions.

Profile conducted interviews with customers and agency leaders, and focus groups with employees. Additionally, we reviewed data from recent employee surveys and coded thematically. We delivered several reports — one for the organization’s leadership and another for employees. Of particular interest to both groups were the customer data from interviews.


The assessment unearthed several surprising findings. The first was a gap in that customers were evaluating the office’s success on their delivery of services that had been outsourced. Thus, the organization was evaluated on work they were no longer performing. The second gap was that clients valued operational support over consulting, which was in conflict with the desire to develop consulting capabilities in all staff. Leadership used this information to develop its strategic plan and design initiatives for staff members.

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