NRC’s Inspector General issues report

August 13, 2020, 8:31AMNuclear News

Overall findings of a survey of Nuclear Regulatory Commission personnel indicate that while the NRC maintains a few strengths compared to external benchmarks, results have declined since 2015 in a number of areas, according to a recent report from the NRC’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG).

The survey was conducted in February 2020 by Willis Towers Watson, a global risk-management, insurance brokerage, and advisory firm that has partnered with the OIG for more than 20 years to assess the NRC’s safety culture and climate, as well as other aspects of employee experience.

Zooming in: Out of 2,802 employees invited to participate, 2,132 completed the 2020 survey—a return rate of 76 percent, higher than the 2015 survey’s return rate of 70 percent. Results were compared with those from the 2012 and 2015 surveys, as well as with U.S. national norms and research and development norms. The 2020 survey contained 80 separate items, broken down across 13 categories.

The comparison with the 2015 survey showed declines across all categories, with substantial declines in nine out of 12 comparable categories. The largest declines were in human capital, management, and NRC objectives and strategic plans. Categories with the smallest declines were differing views process, supervision, and workload and support/working relationships.

Compared with 2012, the NRC has decreased in 11 out of 12 categories. The lone category with a favorable difference was supervision.

When compared with the national norm, the overall category scores for the NRC were significantly less favorable in 5 out of 11 comparable categories. Performing worst against the national norm—between 11 and 18 points below the norm—were the categories of human capital, management, and organizational change.

The OIG’s 52-page executive summary report can be found here.

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