Objective: Approximately 25% of the public health workforce plans to retire by 2020. Succession planning is a core capability of the governmental public health enterprise; however, limited data are available regarding these efforts in state health agencies (SHAs). Methods: We analyzed 2016 Workforce Gaps Survey data regarding succession planning in SHAs using the US Office of Personnel Management's (OPM's) succession planning model, including 6 domains and 27 activities. Descriptive statistics were calculated for all 41 responding SHAs. Results: On average, SHAs self-reported adequately addressing 11 of 27 succession planning activities, with 93% of SHAs adequately addressing 1 or more activities and 61% adequately addressing 1 or more activities in each domain. Conclusions: The majority of OPM-recommended succession planning activities are not being addressed, and limited succession planning occurs across SHAs. Greater activity in the OPM-identified succession planning domains may help SHAs contend with significant turnover and better preserve institutional knowledge.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This project was supported by a cooperative agreement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (3U38OT000161-03S2).
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- public health practice
- state health agencies
- succession planning