HR Strange But True!
July 22, 2009

Do your managers sometimes complain about the time it takes to do proper background checks? Well, President Obama is in this situation. Who is fretting about the vetting process? It's none other than Hillary Rodham Clinton.

After being sidelined by a workplace fall in the company [State Department] parking lot and having surgery on her broken elbow, the Secretary of State is back to work and wondering why it is taking so long to fully staff her agency.

According to Google News, Secretary Clinton told her assembled employees at a meeting at the U.S. Agency for International Development (AID) marking her first 6 months on the job that she is “frustrating beyond words” at the time it is taking to fill key positions, including an AID director. “ The clearance and vetting process is a nightmare. And it takes far longer than any of us would want to see,” she continued.

The dictionary says “to vet” means to thoroughly and carefully inspect and examine, and that is just what is being done to make sure that staffers—as well as campaign supporters being rewarded with diplomatic posts (a long-time Washington tradition)—don't have anything nasty, like income-tax problems, issues with nannies, or other “ethical lapses,” show up in their background checks.

For example, candidates for State Department posts must provide lists of everywhere they have lived since the age of 18 and of every foreign national they know. Reuters reports that Clinton quipped “Beyond a certain age, you can't even remember where you were when you were 18.”

Sources: Google News and Reuters

TGIF - It's HR
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