Governor Signs Executive Order to Expand Opportunity for Pennsylvanians Seeking a Career in Public Service

Governor Josh Shapiro signed Executive Order 2024-01, establishing the Hire, Improve, Recruit, Empower (HIRE) Committee to expand opportunity for Pennsylvanians seeking a career in public service.

“Public service is a noble profession – and I am proud to serve alongside 80,000 Commonwealth employees who go to work every day to help their communities. Since my first day in office, we’ve worked to break down barriers and create real opportunities for Pennsylvanians who want to work in state government – but we have to do more to remain competitive in a challenging labor market and set an example for the private sector,” said Governor Josh Shapiro.

Chaired by Secretary of Administration Neil Weaver and comprised of Cabinet secretaries and senior Administration officials, and the HIRE Committee will help to strengthen the Commonwealth’s recruitment, hiring, development, and retention of high-performing employees by attracting younger generations, hiring for historically hard-to-fill jobs, and ensuring our workforce represents our residents.

“We need to do everything we can right now to attract the best and brightest to public service to lead our Commonwealth into the future. We want to hire Pennsylvanians from all backgrounds, beliefs, and walks of life, so that our workforce continues to represent our 13 million residents,” said Secretary of Administration Neil Weaver. “Through today’s Executive Order to create the HIRE Committee and our ongoing efforts around recruitment and hiring, we are positioning the Commonwealth to be a model employer and a destination for employees who want to make a difference through their work.”

 To build a competitive workforce and become a model for other states and the private sector, the HIRE Committee will work with the Office of Administration (OA) and other Commonwealth agencies to:

  • Develop a pilot program to create financial incentives to help recruit Commonwealth employees with non-English language proficiency for key roles where language proficiency is needed.
  • Continuously build creative recruitment strategies for the Commonwealth’s most hard to fill jobs.
  • Develop a mentorship and networking program to support recently discharged veterans entering or returning to Commonwealth employment.
  • Collaborate with the PA Reentry Council to promote pathways to employment in state government for recently incarcerated Pennsylvanians who are returning to our communities as productive citizens.
  • Create an inclusive workplace in state-owned buildings by directing an accessibility study of the Harrisburg Capitol Complex to improve mobility in and around the Capitol Complex for individuals with disabilities.
  • Expand childcare options in state-owned buildings to support working parents.
  • Expand the availability of free menstrual products in Commonwealth-owned restrooms.
  • Continue efforts working with the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation to widen pathways to Commonwealth employment for individuals with disabilities.
  • Provide employees with notice that they may use allotted sick leave to prioritize their mental health.

Seven percent of Pennsylvania residents are foreign-born and 12 percent speak a language other than English – and by continuing to strengthen the Commonwealth’s recruitment, hiring, and development of employees, the Commonwealth will serve as a model employer and will better meet the rapidly evolving needs of Pennsylvanians.

“With this Executive Order, the Shapiro Administration is letting Pennsylvanians know that our doors are open to everyone,” said Norman Bristol Colón, Commonwealth Chief Diversity Officer. “It’s important that Pennsylvanians see themselves reflected in their state government – and the HIRE Committee’s efforts will help the Commonwealth strengthen our workforce by making jobs more accessible, meaningful, and representative to help deliver better services for everyone.”